In the U.S., two companies dominate the credit scoring industry. FICO® is the industry leader, but VantageScore® has been gaining market share since the three major credit reporting agencies created it in 2006. Both companies develop credit scores that lenders and creditors can use to evaluate applicants and manage customers' accounts. However, VantageScore and the FICO® scoring models use slightly different criteria to determine your scores.
When you use your credit card more often—say, during a pandemic when you need help covering expenses or simply don’t want to handle cash—you may notice an unpleasant side effect: Your credit scores take a hit.
Whether you’re temporarily moving to the U.S. for school or work, or making a long-term transition, you may be looking to open a new credit card. However, even for citizens and permanent residents, it can be difficult to get a credit card if you don’t already have a credit history in the United States.
The Chase Sapphire Reserve® was the first viral credit card, inspiring scores of unboxing videos and causing Chase to run out of the metal card when it launched in 2016. (Cardholders received a temporary plastic replacement.) Despite the competition upping their game in recent years, the Reserve® remains the best overall travel card.
If the names TransUnion, Equifax or Experian ring a bell, you may already know a little bit about credit bureaus. They're the large companies that collect and store information about consumers' financial lives and use this information to create credit reports.
Most consumer credit scores are based solely on the information in one of your credit reports. However, your credit reports might not include your rental payments. As a result, all your on-time rent payments might not be helping your credit scores. Fortunately, that may be changing.
Your credit utilization ratio is one of the most important factors in determining your credit score. And it’s easy to understand why. If you’re constantly maxing out your credit cards and loading up on debt, new lenders will see you as a greater risk than somebody who always leaves himself plenty of financial breathing room.