What is Credit Score?

Your credit score is like a report card for how well you've handled money in the past. It's a three-digit number that shows if you're good at paying back loans or using credit cards responsibly. Banks and other lenders use this score to decide if they can trust you to borrow money. The score goes up if you're good with money and down if you're not so good. So, it's like a grade that helps decide if you can get a loan when you need one.

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Your credit score is like a trust rating for borrowing money. It tells lenders if you're good at paying back loans on time. When you want a loan or credit card, the lender checks your credit score to see if you're a safe bet. It helps them know if you're likely to repay what you borrow.

Think of your CIBIL score as a credit grade between 300 and 900. The higher the score, the better. If you have a score of 750 or more, that's like an A+ for lenders, and they really like that. They might still consider you for credit cards even if you have a score of 700 or higher. So, the higher your score, the more likely banks are to say "yes" when you ask for a loan or credit card.If you're late or miss paying your loan EMIs or credit card bills, it hurts your credit score. But if you're good about paying on time and don't apply for credit too often, your score goes up. So, paying your bills on time and not asking for credit too much helps boost your credit score.

Credit Bureaus in India

TransUnion CIBIL (used to be called Credit Information Bureau (India) Limited) is like a report card keeper for your credit score. It's the oldest one in India, but there are three others: Experian, CRIF High Mark, and Equifax. These bureaus calculate your credit score based on info from banks and others. Because each bureau has its own way of calculating, your score might be a bit different with each. They all do the same job—keeping track of how well you handle credit.

You can easily check and download your credit report for free on MybankingTips.com. We team up with all four top credit bureaus, including CIBIL, so you can keep an eye on your credit score without spending a penny. It's quick and won't affect your score, whether you check it once or a bunch of times. So, in just a few minutes, you can stay on top of your credit game.

How a Credit Score is Calculated?

Your credit score is like a report card made by credit companies. They look at many things to figure it out, like how you've used credit before. And every time you ask for a new loan or credit card, these companies tell banks and others about how you've done with credit in the past.

5 Factors that Affect Credit Score

Here are some important things that affect your credit score:

Duration of Credit History: How long you've been using credit, like credit cards or loans, matters for your credit score. If you've had them for a while and always paid on time, it shows you handle credit responsibly. This has a medium impact on your credit score. Loan Repayment History: Paying your loans on time is great for your credit score. It makes it go up. But if you're late or miss payments, especially for things like EMIs, it brings your score down. How you've handled repaying loans in the past is a big deal when they figure out your CIBIL score. Number of Hard Inquiries: When you apply for a new credit card or loan, the lender checks your credit score. These checks are called hard inquiries. Having too many can bring down your credit score because it might seem like you're really eager for credit. If there are several of these checks at the same time, it can have a short-term impact on your score. However, checking or downloading your credit report yourself is a soft inquiry and doesn't affect your score. Credit Mix: Having different types of loans, like personal, auto, or home loans, and paying them off responsibly is good for your credit score. It shows you can handle various kinds of credit. However, if you have too many unsecured loans, like personal loans, it might seem like you're too eager for credit. This could lead to rejection when applying for a loan. Although having a mix of credit is good, it doesn't have a big impact on your credit score. So, even if you don't have a perfect mix, it's unlikely a lender will reject your application just because of that. Credit Utilization: Your credit utilization ratio (CUR) is the amount of credit you use compared to what you have available. It's suggested to keep this ratio below 30% of your credit limit. While a slightly higher CUR might not hurt your credit score if you pay your credit card bill on time, consistently maxing out your credit card limit can be seen as relying too much on credit. This could have a negative impact on your credit score. So, it's wise to manage your credit card spending responsibly.

Other Factors Affecting your Credit Score:

In addition to the main 5 factors, things like mistakes in your credit report, having a limited credit history, and not being able to fulfill your role as a loan guarantor can slightly lower your credit score.

What is Considered a Good Credit Score?

A credit score of 750 and above from CIBIL or any credit bureau is generally considered good by most lenders. If you maintain a CIBIL score in this range, it's easier to get loan or credit card approvals, with higher chances if your score is closer to 900. However, it's possible to have a good CIBIL score while having a credit score below 700 from another bureau. Therefore, it's recommended to monitor your credit scores from multiple bureaus. Checking your credit score once a month is a good practice.

Credit Score Range and Meaning
Score Band Category Meaning
300 No Score/No History It means you have never taken a loan or credit card and have no credit history. For the best offers on loans and credit cards in future, you should start building your credit score.
300-550 Very Low Credit Score Your credit history is damaged. However, with awareness and discipline you can strengthen your credit score. Check your credit report thoroughly to find out why your credit score is low and take action.
551-620 Low Credit Score You might not have shown a good credit behaviour that has damaged your credit history . You need to take immediate measures to improve your score to become eligible for credit in future.
621-700 Fair Credit Score You are not very far from a strong credit score. To be eligible for the best offers, you should work on improving your score.
701-749 Good Credit Score You have been responsible with credit and have displayed good credit behaviour. Most banks and NBFCs would be happy to offer you credit.
750+ Excellent Credit Score Your track-record with credit is superb! With this score, you would meet the eligibility criteria of most banks and NBFCs and are likely to get the best offers.

Please Note: The credit score range mentioned above is only indicative and may vary from lender to lender and bureau to bureau.

Benefits of a Good Credit Score

When you apply for a loan or credit card, the bank or NBFC usually checks your credit score first. If your score is low, they might say no right away and not look at your application in more detail.

A high credit score is like a green light for lenders. It means they'll dig deeper into your application to see if you're trustworthy with credit. So, a good credit score boosts the chances of getting your loan approved.

While a good credit score is important, it's not the only thing lenders check when deciding to give you credit. They also look at your income, how you've repaid loans before, your debt compared to your income, your work history, job, and more. All these details help them decide whether to approve or deny your loan or credit card application.

Having a good credit score not only helps you get credit but can also save you money. Some banks and companies give people with good credit scores a special deal on interest rates for loans. So, a good score can mean paying less interest when you borrow money.

Benefits of Maintaining a High Credit Score

While lenders look at various factors for loan or credit card applications, your credit score is crucial. Keeping a good credit score offers several advantages, such as:

- Higher chances of loan approval as a good credit score reflects greater creditworthiness and lower risk for the lender. - Increased likelihood of receiving lower interest rates on loans. - Quick and easy approval for your loan and credit card applications. - Access to pre-approved loans based on your eligibility. - Ability to secure higher credit card limits. - Potential discounts on processing fees and other charges.

How to Improve Credit Score?

If your credit score is low, it can be tough to get approved for loans or credit cards. To boost your credit score, follow these steps carefully:

Improve your credit score by following these steps:

1. Always pay your loan EMIs and credit card bills on time, without any misses. 2. Cut down on relying too much on credit, especially if you tend to max out your credit card often. Aim to lower your credit card balances. 3. If you find mistakes in your credit report, fix them promptly. Regularly check your credit score online through platforms like MybankingTips to catch any issues early. 4. Avoid applying for lots of loans or credit cards in a short span. Wait at least six months after getting a new credit before applying for more. 5. Don't close your oldest credit card. Having a longer credit history makes lenders more confident in your creditworthiness. 6. Maintain a good balance of secured (like home or car loans) and unsecured credit (like personal loans or credit cards). 7. Get advice from experts like MybankingTips’s Credit Advisory Services to significantly improve your credit score.

Reasons for a Low Credit Score

- Missing or delaying credit card payments and loan EMIs. - Maxing out credit limits or having a consistently high credit utilization ratio. - Errors in your credit report can significantly lower your score. - Regular or multiple hard inquiries for credit may damage your credit score. - Closing the oldest credit account, especially if other accounts are relatively new, reduces the age of credit history. - Settling a loan or credit card account instead of paying it in full and closing the account.

FAQs on Credit Score

1. How to Check Credit Score for Free?

You can easily check your credit score for free every month on mybankingtips.com, a reliable platform for online credit score checks from different credit bureaus.

Additionally, following RBI's guidelines, credit bureaus are required to provide a Full Free Credit Report (FFCR) once a year to individuals with the credit information they possess. You can request your free credit report once a year from CIBIL's official website.

2. How to Download CIBIL Report?

When you check your credit score on MybankingTips, you receive scores from various bureaus. Your CIBIL report is available on the dashboard alongside your CIBIL score. You can download your CIBIL report from there, and the password for accessing it is set as DDMMYYYY.

3. What is the Minimum CIBIL Score to Get Personal Loan?

The minimum CIBIL score needed for approval of unsecured loans like personal or business loans varies among lenders. Yet, having a CIBIL score of 750 and above makes it easier to get your loan approved. While some lenders may consider applications with a score of 700, it might come with higher interest rates.

4. Can Anyone Check my CIBIL Score?

No. Your CIBIL score is private and confidential. Only you or authorized entities with your consent are allowed to access it. Typically, financial institutions and banks, which are trusted CIBIL members, can access your credit report when you apply for a new loan or credit card.

5. Is CIBIL Score of 750 Considered Good?

Keeping a credit score of 750 and above is seen as good because it reflects financial discipline and makes you a reliable customer for lenders. A solid CIBIL Score in this range increases your likelihood of approval for credit products such as loans and credit cards.

6. Why does my CIBIL Score Keep Changing?

Your CIBIL score can be affected by various factors, both subtle and noticeable. Small details like late payments or reaching your credit card limit can impact it. Additionally, significant events such as taking out a new home or car loan can also influence your credit score.