cancel
Showing results for 
Search instead for 
Did you mean: 

Why is my Credit Karma Score much lower than FICO Score?

djrx
New Member

Why is my Credit Karma Score much lower than FICO Score?

I signed up for that $1 promotional 3 Bureaus report from www.creditchecktotal.com, an Experian company. My scores are 850, 850 and 840 for Experian, Equifax and TransUnion, respectively. These are FICO 8 scores.

 

On Credit Karma, my score are 797 and 806 for TransUnion and Equifax, respectively.

 

My question is why is there a huge discrepancy between these two scores? 

 

Edit:

I am preparing on a student loan refinance with my credit union. Their best rate requires an Equifax score of 825 but not really sure which score they use. Once of their customer service rep said they use Vantage (same with Credit Karma), but not sure which version. I have 4 inquiries falling off in a month. I plan on refinancing then. Should I bbe confident with my FICO 8 score or Credit Karma Scoring?

Message 1 of 15
14 REPLIES 14
Revelate
Moderator Emeritus

Re: Why is my Credit Karma Score much lower than FICO Score?

Vantage score is mostly useless: it is especially unlikely that any CU uses it TBH.

Also 825 sounds absurdly high for a non industry option or some other score out of 900... I suppose VS 2.0 suffices that and the CSR’s claim.



        
Message 2 of 15
KLEXH25
Valued Contributor

Re: Why is my Credit Karma Score much lower than FICO Score?

First of all, you have great scores!! Congratulations!

As for why there’s such a discrepancy between Vantage and FICO, it’s because they use different formulas, so various factors are weighed differently. It’s also why there’s a discrepancy between FICO scores of different types, such as FICO 2 vs FICO 8 (etc). One model might be more forgiving of one factor, compared to another. I don’t think anyone here has really taken the time to learn what Vantage scores value because most of the time, lenders use FICO, but I guess your CU is the exception. Can you ask someone else at your CU the same question to see if you get the same answer? Is there a big rate difference between the top tier and the next?


Message 3 of 15
KLEXH25
Valued Contributor

Re: Why is my Credit Karma Score much lower than FICO Score?

Also wanted to add that CK doesn’t seem to like balances / high utilization. I put a large charge on my Discover card and my FICO 8 dropped 20 points (Fico 2 dropped 30 pts). Just checked Credit Karma and it dropped 67 POINTS. Looks like CK is more balance / utilization sensitive. For perspective, the card was 66% utilization and total aggregate was 10.4% utilization (I already paid it off).

When my balances were all $0 across the board 2-3 weeks ago, my Vantage scores all went up, while FICO went down.


Message 4 of 15
Anonymous
Not applicable

Re: Why is my Credit Karma Score much lower than FICO Score?

CK uses VS 3.0 and I'm quite sure that your lender doesn't.  Contact the lender and get someone on the phone that knows their stuff and ask them two questions.  First, which scoring model (and bureau data) they use and second, what the lowest score is from that model that's needed for their best rate.  I agree with the others that 825 sounds way too high, regardless of scoring model.  Unless the lender says they use VS 3.0, there's no reason to sweat those scores.  Also, the highest scores I've ever seen reported from VS 3.0 (from people with 850 FICO scores) are in the 835-840 range; expecting someone to have a score within 10-15 points of that for a "best rate" is unrealistic.

Message 5 of 15
KLEXH25
Valued Contributor

Re: Why is my Credit Karma Score much lower than FICO Score?

I definitely agree that the CU's score requirement of 825 sounds way too high. Your scores are more than optimal already. I would definitely verify this information with a few different people at your CU.

 

On a different note, I found this post comparing FICO & Vantage score factors:

https://www.experian.com/blogs/ask-experian/credit-education/score-basics/what-is-a-good-credit-scor...



Message 6 of 15
alma_socal
Valued Member

Re: Why is my Credit Karma Score much lower than FICO Score?

Hi all!

 

Just thought I'd add a data point to this thread, since the use of Vantagescore is discussed. 

 

My credit union is American Airlines Federal Credit Union, and they now DO use Vantagescore for credit card pulls at least. 

 

It's the only one I've come across so far that uses Vantagescore, but I was surprised when I called for a CL on my Visa with them and they pulled Vantagescore. 

 

So, at least for me, Vantagescore is not entirely useless as far as my Credit Union goes. 

 

For reference, my FICO 8s are 738-781 and my Vantagescore was 730 when they pulled it. 

 

 



Message 7 of 15
KJinNC
Valued Contributor

Re: Why is my Credit Karma Score much lower than FICO Score?

An example of difference that I have encountered:

 

I have a 2016 charge-off of $92 (surprise! Blindsided by it this year when checking credit)

 

I paid it off about six weeks ago

 

It no longer counts on VantageScore, but does count on FICO. So in my case, I could expect a lower FICO than VS.

 

However, if it was a collection instead of a charge-off, it would have never counted against FICO (they disregard collections under $100), but would have counted against VS until paid off. Keep in mind that if you have great credit, a single derogatory item can have a big impact. So for example, if you had one collection for $80, it might hurt your VS a lot and not affect your FICO at all.

 

It's just two different formulas that try to do basically similar things, but do it in different ways. Results are "probably" "usually" similar but in specific cases, could vary greatly.

 

Either way, your credit is way ahead of mine! Good luck!


FICO Resilience Index: 65. Cards: 5/24, 5/12, 2/6. Accounts including loans: 8/24, 7/12, 2/6. Card CLs total $204,900, or $231,400 including the AU card.Cards (oldest to newest)

Authorized user / Corporate / Auto loans / Personal loan
Message 8 of 15
UpstreamSwimmer
New Member

Re: Why is my Credit Karma Score much lower than FICO Score?

 


@KLEXH25 wrote:
Also wanted to add that CK doesn’t seem to like balances / high utilization....  aggregate was 10.4% utilization


I posted in another thread here about my score dropping when I paid off a card and went from ~15% to ~10.4%.  There's something really weird about being 10% to 12% that tanks your CK (VantageScore3) scores.  So it's not just "high" utilization.

Message 9 of 15
Revelate
Moderator Emeritus

Re: Why is my Credit Karma Score much lower than FICO Score?

@alma_socal did it explicitly state Vantage on the score disclosure or did it just happen to match score wise?

I got a VS disclosure from Chase back in the day (1/2013 to be precise) but we haven’t had many other explicit disclosures to my knowledge.



        
Message 10 of 15
Advertiser Disclosure: The offers that appear on this site are from third party advertisers from whom FICO receives compensation.