It’s a safe bet that you have used a calculator at some point in your life. Perhaps it was a behemoth from Texas Instruments that needed a heavy duty cord to plug it into the wall, maybe it only required a few batteries, or it could have been solar powered, who knows, maybe the only calculator you have ever really used is the one that’s on your computer. Either way, you know how much quicker they are at solving problems. That’s what they’re designed to do, and they do it well.
Over the course of many years, calculators have definitely evolved. In fact, it seems as though they are getting more and more specialized. There are scientific calculators that let you perform many complicated computations, and graphing calculators, too. Then when you go online you can find calculators that estimate all kinds of things, such as your chances of finding true love, how much of a carbon footprint you have, and even when you’re statistically due to die – yuck!
That’s a lot of calculating power, to be sure. But there’s one that just may be the most important when it comes to everything you do financially: the credit score calculator. So what is it? Just like it sounds, it will use the data you put into to give you a close approximation of your credit score. While each of the companies that give credit scores keeps their precise methods a secret, enough is known about them to give you a pretty good idea of where you stand.
You use a credit score calculator to get a fair and free estimate of your FICO credit score. That score is one of the main criteria lenders use to determine if you will get a loan, and what the terms of that loan will be. It’s also worth mentioning that others may use your score to make decisions, such as potential employers, insurance companies and landlords. That’s why it’s so important to have an idea of what your credit score is–it prevents surprises and gives you a chance to improve your score.
Before you use a credit score calculator for the first time, you should have a few details ready to go. It will make the process easier if you know what type of questions will be asked. The more accurate the information you put in, the more accurate the estimate of your credit score.
Here are some of the main questions most calculators will ask:
- How much is your gross income?
- How many credit cards do you have?
- What types of credit accounts do you have?
- Do you any debts that are thirty days late? Sixty? More? How many?
- Have you ever filed for bankruptcy?
- What is the total amount of debt you owe?
- How many cards are at their credit limit?
- Have you ever had a judgment or tax lien filed against you?
With all of the different calculators out there, it’s good to know that the credit score calculator is a free and useful tool that you can to use to have a better financial future.