A new government report found that the credit score you see might not be the same score lenders are seeing when they pull your credit report.
According to a study from the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, one out of five consumers is likely to receive a score that is “meaningfully” different from the score used by a lender to make a credit decision.
Apparently the confusion comes in because of where lenders and consumers get their information. Most lenders look at any one of 49 different FICO scores when deciding whether to give out a loan. The score consumers get when they pay for their FICO score may or may not be the same score used by their lender. Sometimes those scores can be very different.
While the number of consumers whose scores vary by large margins is relatively low, for those that are effected it can have a big impact. Those the believe their scores are higher than they really are will apply for loans they don’t qualify for. While those that think their score is lower than it is might settle for higher interest rates or worse terms.
Consumers are advised to shop around when applying for credit cards or loans and be familiar with their FICO credit score.