The VantageScore is More Consistent
FICO’s chief competition is VantageScore. Introduced in 2006, it was developed jointly by the three major credit reporting bureaus. Today, it’s independently managed by VantageScore Solutions, which is owned equally by the three bureaus. VantageScore Solutions says its credit score is used by more than 2,800 creditors across all industries except, notably, mortgages.10
Although its initial scores ranged from 501 to 990, the commonly used VantageScore 3.0 and the most-current VantageScore 4.0 mirror FICO’s 300 to 850 range. (For more on the implications of these ranges, see “Credit Score Ranges: What is an Excellent, Good, or Poor Credit Score?”) VantageScore also uses similar categories to organize data, though it weighs them somewhat differently than FICO. Rather than using percentages, VantageScore relies on descriptive phrases to break down your score. In descending order of influence, those weightings are:11
- Extremely influential: Total credit usage, balance and available credit
- Highly influential: Credit mix and experience
- Moderately influential: Payment history
- Less influential: Age of credit history and new accounts
VantageScore also distinguishes itself by what it terms “consistency,” meaning that it intends its scores to be used across all industries. There are no industry-specific versions. Still, VantageScore acknowledges there may be some differences in your score from one credit reporting company to another.
Both FICO and VantageScore 3.0 are calculated solely on your credit history. Neither considers any other factor, such as age, race, gender, marital status, salary, occupation, or even financial assets.