11/17/2009

My Canadian Credit Score

Your credit score is a judgment about your financial health, at a specific point in time. It indicates the risk you represent for lenders, compared with other consumers. In Canada, there are two credit reporting agencies: Equifax and TransUnion. You can receive either just your credit report via mail, or you can receive your credit report and your credit score if you pay a fee and order them online.

It's been about a year since I last ordered my scores, so I thought it was a good time to check them again. With our home buying timeline advancing, we're also looking at checking Jordan's credit score to see how much it's improved over the last year and what we need to do to continue to improve it, I'll write more on his another day.

The last time I checked my scores in January, they were 788 (TransUnion) and 749 (Equifax). They are now 829 (TransUnion) and 769 (Equifax). These scores are very good - but it would be nice to see Equifax at the 800+ mark like trans-union is.

A lot of people have written about how to improve your score and how to actually order your score, but I'm curious about what the difference is between the two companies, and what do the differences mean. In my reading, I have found out that Equifax reports your FICO score, and is apparently used by most major banks. Transunion scores you, but it is not a FICO score.

hmm..

Can anyone shed some light on this, do you know what the difference is?

I know, at least in part, why my scores are so different. Forever ago I accidently opened a department store credit card, and cancelled it a few months later. It still appears open with Trans union, however is closed with Equifax. Further to that, Trans union doesn’t have my cell phone account listed whereas Equifax does. Finally, both bureaus have incorrectly listed one of my repayment amounts (it appears lower then it actually is).

I wouldn’t have thought that the above would translate to such a huge discrepancy. I wonder if the department store card is giving me a ‘false history’ with Trans union.

Does it even matter, if Equifax is the bureau most often used by big banks?  What are your thoughts on credit scores and the differences between the two reporting agencies in Canada?
Reactions:

5 comments:

  1. Personally I never check the score. I do order a credit report once a year. But the score is meaningless to me. If you pay your bills on time, and pay back credit on time your score is going to be pretty high. There is no need I think to look up that score or really care about it.

    On the other hand, a Credit report should be looked at often to see what mistakes are on there and then you should take actions to fix those mistakes

    regards,

    Jason

    ReplyDelete
  2. I do the score and the report :D

    ReplyDelete
  3. In the U.S., we can get our credit reports from all 3 agencies (Experian, Equifax, TransUnion) for free once a year. I get them to check for mistakes, like canadiansavings mentions. I've only gotten my score once, before we wanted to buy a house, so we could see where we were at. And we were pleasantly surprised! Mine ranged from 792 to 811, which was awesome, but I'm never late on bills and keep credit card balance-to-credit line ratios relatively low.

    ReplyDelete
  4. Hey,

    Great blog! I will be adding you to my blogroll. Credit scores are funny things, it is amazing how inaccurate they can be at times.

    ReplyDelete
  5. How do you find out the credit score? Does it cost to do this? I just received my credit report today from Equifax and I'm glad I did. A lot of things are inaccurate (where I live, my job, it's all from 6 years ago!)

    ReplyDelete

Hi! Thank you for stopping by and leaving a message.

Followers

Links ♥