Posted by William Charles on November 23, 2013
Questions & Answers

Published on November 23rd, 2013 | by William Charles

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TransUnion FICO Score Vs Equifax FICO Score Vs Experian FICO Score – What’s The Difference?

Question:

I went to purchase a FICO score from myFICO.com I noticed I could purchase a TransUnion FICO score, an Equifax and an Experian score. What’s the difference and which one should I actually buy? Tom, California

Answer:

Hi tom, thanks for the question! There are actually 49 FICO scores, but myFICO.com only sells three of them. They currently sell the following scores:

  • TransUnion FICO Risk Score, Classic 98 (TU-98)
  • Experian, FICO Risk Model V3 (EX-04)
  • Equifax, BEACON 09 (EQ-08).

Click her to get the Equifax Beacon 09 score for free by signing up to myFICO’s score watch program. Make sure to cancel within 10 days to avoid paying any fees (which is very easy to do).

As you can see there is a TransUnion, Experian & Equifax score. These are the three consumer reporting agencies and they all collect their own credit information from the different furnishes (e.g credit card companies, banks, etc). This information is compiled into a credit report and then the credit report is turned into a credit score through mathematical analysis.

Because they have different information, there is a score available from each of them on myFICO.com. The reason there is 49 different FICO scores is that the FICO algorithm that creates these scores is regularly updated, there has been three major updates, 1998, 2004 and 2008. Each update contains one “classic” score and then several industry specific scores (e.g bankcard, mortgage and auto scores).

The TransUnion score on myFICO uses the 98 update, Experian the 04 update and Equifax the 08 update. These are all “classic” scores, the industry specific scores put slightly different weighting on different categories.

At the moment most lenders look at the 2004 scores, this might sound unusual given that it’s now 2013 but creditors are slow to update the systems the use in case something goes wrong.

Given that 2004 is the most looked at model still, we’d suggest you get your Experian FICO score from myFICO.com. You can save $4 if you use the following promo code: “E1311BDY20FST” (valid for November, 2013). Alternatively look at how to get a free score.

If you have a question, feel free to contact us. If something isn’t clear in this answer, let us know in the comments below.



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