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Credit Score

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A credit score is a value computed by a credit reporting agency, or credit bureau, and based upon information about a person collected by the agency. The credit score is sold by subscription to banks and other companies, who use the credit score when making credit decisions. Three major credit bureaus compute their own credit score for an individual. Typically, a lower credit score (i.e. below 600) will reduce the consumer's eligibility for credit products. As a result, a lower credit score tends to increase the cost of credit. Under federal law, an individual may obtain (free upon request) the credit report from which their credit score is based if credit is denied. Credit reports can also be obtained for free once per year. Some of the more common factors that are used to determine a person's credit score are: payment punctuality, current debt to available credit limit ratio, and length of credit history.

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