What is the difference between a credit report and a credit score?

If you’re unsure of the difference between a credit report and a credit score, you’re not alone. Here’s an overview of the major distinctions between these two assessments of your financial life.

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What is it?

It’s a document
A history of all of your accounts and payments.

It’s comprised of:

Credit cards


Auto loans

Student loans

Bankruptcy, liens or court judgements

How do you get it?

You’re entitled to one free credit report from each credit reporting bureau per year.
Visit www.annualcreditreport.com for more information and to order your report.


What is it?

It’s a number
Based on your credit report.

It’s comprised of:

35% Payment history: All on- time and late payments and public records (bankruptcy, judgments and liens).

30% Accounts owed: The percent of money owed to total available credit.

15% Length of credit history: How long your accounts have been open and active.

10% Types of credit: Credit cards, auto loans and mortgages.

10% New credit: Recent applications and new accounts.

*Average credit score as of 2015. Source: FICO®

How do you get it?

The most common credit score is the Fair Isaac Corporation (FICO®) score.
Credit reporting bureaus such as Experian, Equifax, and TransUnion supply this number, often for a fee.

How are they connected?

A credit score is generated from the results of your credit report. It’s how lenders decide your credit worthiness. A credit score ranges from 300–850. The higher the number, the better credit you have.

Know where you stand

1/3 of Americans have never checked their credit report or score, according to a study by TransUnion. That does not have to be you. The more aware you are about your credit, the better decisions you will likely make when it comes to spending. Request copies of your credit report and score today.

FICO is a registered trademark of Fair Isaac Corporation in the United States and other countries.

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The material provided on this website is for informational use only and is not intended for financial, tax or investment advice. Bank of America and/or its affiliates, and Khan Academy, assume no liability for any loss or damage resulting from one’s reliance on the material provided. Please also note that such material is not updated regularly and that some of the information may not therefore be current. Consult with your own financial professional and tax advisor when making decisions regarding your financial situation.

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