Do you belong to those 25% of the millennials who don’t even have an idea of what a credit score is? Then this article is definitely for you. We’ll uncover the key details of credit history, report and score definitions, difference between them, types of credit score, FICO score, factors influencing your credit, bad credit definition, opportunities to get approved for Payday loans with bad credit, and ways to improve your score.

How much would you like to borrow?

Credit score, credit report, credit history. 

Credit score is a figure which lenders, banks and other financial institutions use to assess how trustworthy or how risky you are as a borrower. This number is based on the information from your credit report.

Credit report is a detailed report of an individual's credit history prepared by a credit bureau. Credit bureaus collect information and create credit reports based on that information, and lenders use the reports along with other details to determine loan applicants' credit worthiness. 1

The information included is:

  • name, date of birth, your addresses from the past 6 years, and any financial associations with another person, e.g. joint mortgage. 
  • Whether you are registered to vote at your address
  • County Court Judgements (CCJs), bankruptcies and Individual Voluntary Arrangements (IVAs)
  • Credit account information: how much you owe and whether you have paid on time, the age of the account (including mortgages, credit cards, store cards)
  • ‘Hard’ searches carried out on your account
  • Fraud that has been committed using your name or any fraud that you've committed using someone else’s name

This information is collected from banks, lenders and utility companies. It’s updated once a month and saves the data for half a year.

Your credit report is given to you by one of the three main credit reference agencies (Equifax, Callcredit and Experian). It shows you how your credit report will look to lenders (the higher the score, the better it looks).

Credit history is a record of a borrower's responsible repayment of debts. A credit report is a record of the borrower's credit history from a number of sources, including banks, credit card companies, collection agencies, and governments. [Credit History - Investopedia]2

Types of credit score. FICO score. 

Actually, there are hundreds of credit scores. They may be specific to a certain credit bureau, or to the type of a loan. But fortunately, a few of them are more common and widely recognized than others. They are FICO, Experian, Equifax, TransUnion and Vantage scores. They share some of the main criteria identifying your creditworthiness but are slightly different. Let’s see how.

According to your payment history, amounts owed, length of credit history, new credit, types of credit used the score ranges are the following:


300 - 850


330 - 830


300 - 850


300 - 850


501 - 990, A - F

The most commonly recognized is FICO score, while Experian, Equifax and TransUnion are the biggest official organizations maintaining records for practically everyone in the USA, and VantageScore is rather new one. It was created to provide lenders with risk assessment across all three reporting agencies.

The most influential factors for your FICO score are your payment history and the debt you owe (65%) alongside with the length of your credit history, your credit mix, and new credit/inquiries (35%).

For VantageScore, the most important is your payment history. The next go the age and types of credit you have, combined with how much of your credit limit is in use.

How much would you like to borrow?

How do I know my Credit Score? 

Federal law allows you access to a free copy of each of your three reports every 12 months, so there’s no reason not to take advantage of this benefit. You can check your credit report from each bureau for free once per year from It’s recommended to get a report from each of them as the score may vary. You’d better ensure they have the most accurate and up to date information – otherwise your credit score could be affected.

Interesting to know!
9% of Americans worry that they won’t be able to pay off their debt in the long term future while 2% of them are planning to check their credit report more often and 2% are going to check their credit score more often. These tendencies are definitely interconnected and interdependent!3

When you request a copy of your credit report, you’ll see your financial history. It’s not the score. To get the score you need to purchase it from the company’s website. You can also sign up for a credit monitoring service if you expect to work on your credit score over time and want to view your progress on a regular basis. Just be sure to select a company that does indeed use the real FICO.

What is Bad Credit Score? 

Each lender determines what is a good or bad credit score. It can also vary according to the Credit Bureau you apply to and according to the type of loan you are going to take. However, there are several general score range points:

  • Excellent/very good credit score: 700 to 850
  • Good credit score: 680 to 699 (Average American score is 682)
  • Average/OK credit score: 620 to 679
  • Low credit score: 580 to 619
  • Poor credit score: 500 to 579
  • Bad credit score: 300 to 499

What these numbers really mean is defined in the following table:

Credit title




Very good


Credit score






What does it mean?

You may be rejected. Or you may need to pay a fee or a deposit.

To get approved may be rather difficult and the rates are likely to be higher

You are an “acceptable” borrower

You may get better interest rates from lenders

You will be easily approved for a loan

27% of people have a very good score while only 2% - poor. The highest average score is in Wisconsin, the lowest – in Mississippi. Still any US resident with financial difficulties can apply and get approved for a loan. Those with very good or even exceptional score may qualify for any type, amount and lower rates loans, while the others can get a payday, personal or installment loan.

Although there is some distinction between a low credit score and a bad credit score, it is important to note that many lenders consider consumers with scores under 620 as credit risks.

Bad credit score by state. 

The U.S. average is 687, with southern states typically reporting lower scores. California (754), Oregon (750) and Wisconsin (749) led the country with the highest average FICO scores. 11.7% of Americans have a score of 549 or less, 20.4% - from 800 to 850.

Percentage of the population with declining credit: 

  • 8% - South Dakota
  • 9% of the population - Wisconsin, Utah, Nebraska, Minnesota
  • 10% - Hawaii, Idaho, Massachusetts, Montana, Vermont, Washington, Wyoming
  • 11% - Virginia, Rhode Island, Pennsylvania, Oregon, New Hampshire, New York, New Jersey, Maine, IllinoisColorado, California, Connecticut, Alaska
  • 12% -Indiana
  • 13% - West Virginia, Ohio, Maryland
  • 14% - Arizona, DC, Delaware, Missouri
  • 15% - Kentucky
  • 16% - Nevada, North Carolina
  • 17% - Oklahoma, Florida
  • 18% - Alabama, Georgia, Louisiana, New Mexico, Texas
  • 19% - Mississippi
  • 20% - South Carolina
  • Average score is minimum 642 in Mississippi, maximum 707 in Minnesota

[ Fair Isaac Corp ] , [ United States Federal Reserve Bank ].4

Does your credit score matter abroad? 

Almost all the countries have credit score systems to evaluate how risky a borrower you are. There may be some differences but the basic principle is the same, lenders still look at how you’ve conducted your finances, the timeliness of payments, and how much of a risk you are. Let’s compare American, Canadian, British and European scoring.



The UK


They work on a scale of 300 to 850 and have three credit bureaus.

They work on a scale of 300 to 900 and have two credit bureaus.

There are three credit bureaus, and lenders also take into account court judgments and whether the borrower has voted in elections.

Your score depends on your current salary, your family situation, current debts, residence status, and other factors. If you don’t pay off on time, this information is shared by all lenders across most of Europe, which makes it hard for you to get approved for a loan.


Must know!

First of all, you must remember that if you plan to move to another country you may face difficulties getting a visa if you have serious loan debt. In case you did move you’d better make sure your credit record is OK as it may also be counted while applying for a loan abroad. The credit bureau Equifax operates in 15 countries through Europe and Latin America.

If you don’t maintain your credit in the U.S. while living abroad, you lose it and will have to start over once again upon return to the States. And everybody knows that no credit is as bad as having a poor one. So use the Internet to check your score and pay by your credit card at least once in a while to show that you use it and track your credit.

How can I take a Payday loan if I have a poor or fair credit score?

Bad credit loan is the type of credit given to borrowers with a FICO score below 640. You usually need at least 600 to qualify for such loan. To get money you may turn to credit unions, family, friends, peer-to-peer lending platforms or use online lending service. When choosing an online lender for a bad credit loan, there are important features to take into account. You can find all these important criteria on website, which gives you a unique opportunity to compare companies. Pay attention to5:

  • Type of lending company
  • Credit history and general qualifications
  • Co-signer option
  • Additional eligibility qualifications
  • Employment requirements
  • Interest rates and types
  • Loan terms
  • Fees and penalties
  • Repayment options

The types of loans available for bad credit applicants are Payday, Personal and Installment. They typically have higher interest rates and shorter terms than loans offered to people with good credit. You are most likely to get a Payday cash advance as its amount is not very high, $100 - $1000, and the APR on the contrary may exceed 400%. This fact shouldn’t frighten you as due to short (14 - 30 days) term the overpay could be only $1 a day.

How much would you like to borrow?

You’ll get up to $1000 cash deposited into your account within 24 hours. Just fill out a simple application form online and get instant approval if you meet the lenders’ basic requirements, which typically are:

  • Minimum FICO score of at least 600
  • Clean credit history; no judgments, liens and bankruptcies on your credit report; and a history of making on-time payments
  • Stable employment
  • Proof of identification with a passport, driver’s license or voter’s ID. You’ll also need to provide proof of residence such as a utility bill.

Installment and personal loans are also available for borrowers with a bad credit. Though you score can influence the amount you want to take and the interest rate the lender will offer to you. The maximum sum for an installment cash advance is $5000, and for a personal loan - $15000. In any case you need no collateral, no guarantor, no paperwork. No matter whether your credit score is 400, 550, or 600, get the chance to learn more about all the opportunities you have and compare the best lending services you are offered on