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What Is Equifax Score?

What your Equifax Score says about you as a borrower

On your credit file, held by Equifax (formerly known as Veda Advantage), there’s a score which compares you as a borrower to the rest of the Australian population.

This is known as your Equifax Score (previously VedaScore) and it’s one of the factors lenders consider when they assess your mortgage application.

The information on your credit file, including personal information such as your age, gender and address, are all used to calculate your score.

Do I have a good score?

As part of your home loan application, we obtain a copy of your credit file from Equifax.

The score provides us with a good indication of your strength as borrower.

So what’s considered a good Equifax Score?

  • Excellent: Any score above 700.
  • Good: Any score from 600 to 700.
  • Average: 550 is the average score.
  • Bad: Any score from 400 to 500.
  • Very bad: Any score below 400.

The average score for all Australians who are credit active is 550, however, your score can range from anywhere between -200 to 1,200.

Having a score of 550 would mean that you have a 1 in 12 chance of having a default lodged on your credit file in the next 12 months, whereas a score of 200 would mean you have a 1 in 2 chance.

It’s extremely rare to see scores higher than 900 or lower than 200.

How do I get a copy of my Equifax Score?

You’ll be able to see your Equifax Score /VedaScore when you apply for a home loan with one of our mortgage brokers.

Unfortunately, we cannot provide you with a copy of your Equifax Score.

If you’re still curious about your score, you can order a copy by contacting Equifax.

Check out their offers on their pricing page.

Their Starter Pack starts at just under $80 and includes your full credit report.

You’ll receive this report annually.

How does Equifax calculate your score?

Your Equifax Score is ultimately a score of all the details of your credit file.

Basic personal information

This includes your full name, date of birth, gender, address, previous address, drivers licence number, employer and previous employer.

If you’re a director or proprieter you should check both the indiviuals and commercial sections of your credit file.

The type of credit provider you applied with

There may be different levels of with each lender.
For example, a credit union may have a higher level of risk than a major bank or lender.

The nature of the credit or loan

Home loans and HELP Debt are seen as a lower risk than car finance or payday lending.

Credit enquiries

Loans that you have applied for in the last five years are listed as credit enquiries.

Defaults

Loans or accounts where you’re more than 60 days overdue are listed as defaults.

Court writs

A court writ is a formally written document that is issued by the court, usually because someone has lodged a court case against you.

Court judgments

Judgments are listed when you’re unable to come to a suitable agreement with the creditor

Bankruptcy history (including Part IX history)

Bankruptcy or entering into a Part 9 agreement will essentially bring your score to zero.

How do lenders use Equifax Score?

Many lenders have Equifax’s score feed directly into their own scorecard that they use to assess loan applications.

Others ignore the Equifax Score and just use the data from your credit file.

Whilst your score with Equifax will not be the only factor that the lender considers, it will make a big difference to the lender’s own credit score and the outcome of your application.

If this may be a problem for you then you can consider:

What is a negative Equifax Score?

If you have serious credit infringement then your score will be negative! It’s possible to have a score as low as -200.

However, if you have been bankrupt or been in a part IX agreement in the last 7 years then your score will be between -994 and -999.

Equifax decided to do this to better differentiate between the risk associated with different types of people who have been bankrupt.

We’re not aware of negative scores being used by any lenders at present, however, we expect that once the accuracy of negative scores is proven then some specialist lenders will use this in their assessment rather than their current risk matrices.

How can I improve my Equifax Score?

Improving your Equifax Score /VedaScore is different to improving your credit score with a particular lender.

Equifax Score is calculated looking only at your credit file, whereas a lender is looking at all aspects of your application.

There are a few simple steps that you can take to improve your Equifax Score.

  • Ask Equifax to fix up any data that’s incorrect.
  • Avoid moving address or employer unnecessarily.
  • Avoid applying for credit that you don’t need.
  • Avoid applying for credit with less reputable lenders.
  • Pay all of your debts and bills on time every time.
  • If you have any defaults then make sure that they are paid.

Why are "enquiries" so important?

While most people are aware that a bankruptcy, court writ or default will have a large effect on their Equifax Score, few people are aware that just applying for a loan can damage their credit file.

Each time you apply for a loan, the lender checks your credit history with Equifax, and Equifax records this as an “enquiry” on your credit file.

This data has a surprisingly large impact on your score! In particular, Equifax takes the following into account:

  • Number of enquiries: Too many enquiries makes you look like a distressed or desperate borrower.
  • Type of credit: If you apply for a mortgage then this is a low risk whereas someone applying for multiple credit cards is seen as a high risk.
  • Choice of lender: If you’re applying with lenders of last resort then this will have a bigger effect on your VedaScore than applying with a bank.
  • Shopping pattern: Applying for 3 credit cards over 3 years is seen as normal, however applying for three credit cards in one go is seen as a risk.

Positive credit reporting and Equifax Scores

At the moment, there is a limited scope of information that banks can access to get a picture of you as a borrower.

Since the rollout of positive credit reporting or comprehensive credit reporting (CCR) in 2014, a whole lot more of your credit history is available.

This has both a negative and positive impact on your Equifax Score /VedaScore depending on your situation.

Apart from the information that’s already available to credit providers, your Equifax Score (VedaScore) now takes into account the following:

  • The date a credit account is opened.
  • Current limit on credit accounts.
  • The nature of the credit account.
  • The date a credit account is closed.
  • 24 months account payment history which will tell the bank whether you paid the minimum amount required on your financial commitments each month or not.
  • A “default” is listed on your credit file for being late by 60 days or more and for amounts you owe over $150, which is up from $100. It will still remain on your file for 5 years.

Apply for a mortgage

Do you have a low Equifax Score /VedaScore? Our mortgage brokers are experts in credit scoring and know which lenders will assess your application favourably.

Please call us on 1300 889 743 or fill in our free assessment form and one of our mortgage brokers will let you know if you can qualify for a home loan.

  • Lucy

    Hey, do I have to pay if you guys check my veda score?

  • Hi Lucy, you don’t have to pay us for accessing your veda report. Veda score will have a big impact to the lender’s credit score and the result of your application.

  • Franz

    Do lenders also use credit scoring from agencies such as Experian? My partner has an Experian score, but there is insufficient information on her Veda profile to generate a score. She has 0 enquiries, defaults, etc.

  • Yes some lenders do use Experian however it is the exception rather than the norm. I wouldn’t worry about your partner not having a VedaScore as with a joint application your score and the overall nature of the loan will have a bigger effect.

    FYI a couple scores higher than a single person in most cases so given that the rest of your situation is ok then I expect you should be fine.

    Try this calc to see what a lender would think https://www.homeloanexperts.com.au/credit-score-home-loan/credit-score-calculator/

  • corey

    I have recently been discharged from bankruptcy and have a score -996. how long will it generally take to get an average score?

  • Hi Corey

    If you have an act of bankruptcy such as a Part IX or Part X or an actual bankruptcy then you’ll have a negative credit score ranging from -994 to -999. Your credit score will stay in this range for 2 years from the date of discharge, or up to 5 years from the date you became bankrupt, whichever is later.

    After that date you’ll have a positive Vedascore, and in many cases it may be quite a good one above 550 from our experience.

    You can still get a home loan for approx 90% of the property value as a discharged bankrupt with this shown on your credit file https://www.homeloanexperts.com.au/bad-credit-home-loans/discharged-bankruptcy/

  • corey
  • Roberto Taranto

    Hi

    I recently checked my credit score, its sitting at around 504

    I haven’t got any default, i’m just curious if i have a 5% deposit will that be enough to be approved. I made a few enquires in the past, not so much in the last 2 years. Also i have noticed my credit scores hasn’t gone up even thought i’ve been paying my finance car loan on time. Is it goong to change?

  • Hi Roberto

    504 is below average (550 is approx average), so it would be a concern and for some lenders it is likely you wouldn’t get approved.

    Your Veda Score feeds into the bank’s credit score. But the bank’s credit score takes more than just your Veda Score into account. Your length of time in your job, having genuine savings, the amount of debt you have and where you live would all matter.

    We have a few lenders with competitive rates that lend 95% with credit scoring. We also have some lenders that do guarantor loans with easier credit scoring and no LMI. https://www.homeloanexperts.com.au/guarantor-home-loans Both of these options would likely work for you.

    Your score will increase over time if you:
    – Don’t apply for unsecured loans like credit cards / personal loans / car loans
    – Make your payments on time (Positive credit reporting will be active within a year)
    – Don’t move address or employer too often.

  • linda ott

    Today, my new score is 775 out of a possible 850; my Vantage score is 990 out of 990; my auto score is 905 out of 950; and my home score is 912 out of 950. All scores computed from the same database on the same day. Why the variances? Use of different algorithms. Who controls the algorithms? The rating agencies..What can you do about it—-nothing! I filed a complaint against the rating agencies in 2010 to the FTC, and to date, they have acknowledged receipt
    but have not responded..They are not going to repond. The rating agencies run wild.I don’t need new credit. I am 73 years old, and have assets. However, I do pay auto and home insurance each year and not having my home and auto scores maxed-out affects what I pay for home and auto insurance each year. Probably costs me several hundred dollars for my private residence and rentals.
    I repeat, the credit rating agencies have more power over your financial life than you can imagine, and they report to no one. Not one government agency will get involved in the algorithms used by rating agencies. It’s their call. Not even the new Consumer Protection Agency will touch this subject. I know. I tried to get them involved but got disappointed..As usual no response..I was able to put a full stop to through the help of a young man and now my scores are what I want it to be..He’s honest and very intelligent..The way he worked it all out I have no idea but he did..You should contact him today he will help change your life..eliterealhack(AT)gmail(DOT)com.

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  • SHRI

    Hi , I have a veda score of 604, I I checked recently, but the credit savvy score is 698, why so much difference ? And would I be able to get home loan on this score , my wife has good veda score and we are applying jointly.

  • Hi Shri
    A score of 500 – 600 is ok to get a home loan in many cases, it just depends on the lender as VedaScore is just part of the lender’s score. Time in your job, your asset position, residential stability and your LVR https://www.homeloanexperts.com.au/home-loan-articles/loan-to-value-ratio-lvr/ all have a big effect as well. In particular having lots of unsecured debt such as credit cards and personal loans will reduce your score. Joint applications score higher than sole applications.
    If you like contact us https://www.homeloanexperts.com.au/free-quote/ and one of our mortgage brokers can look up your credit file and let you know your options. In most cases you won’t pay a higher rate, it’s just about choosing the right bank.

  • Mark clegg

    i have been a victim of scam to different hackers who almost ruined me till i read about geniusolution AT cyberdude DOT com awhile back, i decided to give him a try and just lastnight i checked my credit score and saw the positive changes he had made!! i have since then connected him to friends and family who all were flabbergasted by his results, i feel its only right i share him with the public as am sure there are so many in my situation.

  • Jamie Evans

    Hi i have a low score was 410 its improving slowly now its 457 has default 2014 and missed car payments x 8 2015 clean payments since feb 2016 looking to get a home loan with sister who has a good rating 906 but low income i have a better income we will have a deposit about 30k looking to borrow 350k approx do we need 10% etc can you give idea of how that might play out

  • Hi Jamie,

    We’d need to see your full situation to know for sure. It’s quite complex and there are several possible solutions that you may or may not qualify for. Please contact us if you’d like our help https://www.homeloanexperts.com.au/free-quote/

  • Niharika Arora

    I have 508 credit score and I don’t have any defaults the reason for low scores is lot of inquiries but I have paid all the debt which I took in last 1 year so how its gonna effect in home loan?

  • Fiona Gillen

    Hi I dont understand your scoring. It doesn’t match what Veda says. My score is 836 which Veda says is Very Good not Excellent and my aprtner has a score of 634 which Verda saus is Average no Good. Can you please expalin?

  • Hi Fiona,
    It’s a small difference based on where you draw the line. As a general rule 634 and above would be fine to get approved for a home loan.
    Note that the banks take more than just VedaScore into account when they calculate the score of your application. You can use our credit score calculator to see how a bank would see your situation https://www.homeloanexperts.com.au/mortgage-calculators/credit-score-calculator/

  • Fiona Gillen

    Hi thanks for that.