A lot of people think that to be considered to have “perfect” credit, you need to have a score of 850. After all, that is the highest credit score possible on the standard range of credit scoring. However, as described in the previous post about the possibility of achieving a credit score of 900 or greater, to be considered as perfect credit you really just need to be at a score of 799 or above.
Anything from that score, or higher, is all the same – being at 850 will not get you any more advantages than someone who has a score of 800. Some experts even argue that perfect credit begins at a lower score, at around 751 or above. However, a little bit of research by our team here has indicated that the bar is a little bit higher than that.
While you may think that getting a perfect credit score is not attainable, when you think about it is not being at 850, and instead think of it as being around 800 or above, then it is a much more feasible goal. If you’re already in the range of 750, which is excellent credit, it is definitely within your reach.
How Many People Have a Perfect Credit Score?
After studying a large sample of the population, research has shown that credit scores fall in the following proportions (percentages are rounded to the nearest whole number):
- 15%: Perfect Credit Score (800 – 850)
- 14%: Excellent Credit Score (750 – 799)
- 14%: Good Credit Score (700 – 749)
- 16%: Fair Credit Score (640 – 699)
- 41%: Bad Credit Score (300 – 639)
If you don’t know what your score is, there are plenty of places on the web where you can check for free. Knowing what your score is, and what is factoring most into your credit-worthiness, are the first steps to be on your way to a perfect score. However, as we’ll go into below, you don’t need to be at 850 to be perfect. We’ll also get into some tips to help boost you up into that range.
Why 850 Isn’t a Perfect Credit Score
How many people do you think have the maximum score of 850? According to the major credit-scoring firms like FICO, only around 1% of credit users fall into this top spot. Do you think only 1 out of 100 people could be considered candidates for perfect credit worthiness? Of course not! It wouldn’t make much sense for creditors to have special products that only apply to such a small demographic.
Do you ever recall seeing an advertisement from a credit company that offers something for perfect credit? No way. You’ll see language about “good credit” or “excellent credit”, as this opens up their target market to a much broader swath of the population.
Where the line is drawn between what is excellent credit and what is perfect credit is subjective and will differ depending on the source. What it comes down to is what is the risk and reward for a potential creditor extending financing to a particular candidate. The point where that delineation, between excellent and perfect, is somewhere between 750 and 800, depending on the creditor.
However, you don’t necessarily need to be at around 800 (or higher) to get the best rate. Typically, being at 750 or above is considered to be of no credit risk, and will open up the best financing for you. To be safe, though, getting to 800 sure won’t hurt your chances for better terms. Instead of thriving for 850, shoot for whatever is needed to qualify you for the best terms. Investing your time in raising your credit score is an investment in yourself and your future!
How to Build Perfect Credit
Here are a few ways that you can inch your score upward, and they are all easy to implement.
- Pay two times a month: Obviously, you need to pay your bills on time every month, so that means at least one monthly payment to meet your monthly obligation. However, if you pay a second time towards a debt each month, you can lower your credit utilization, and also lower the balance that will be charged interest.
- Maximize your credit limits: Another way to lower your credit utilization, other than paying down your balance, is by raising the other side of the equation by maximizing your credit limit. Even if you have no plans on using it, asking your credit card company to raise your limit gives you a bigger denominator to determine your credit utilization. It is free to ask, though make sure you know whether or not a hard inquiry will be pulled on your credit file for them to make a decision. Some do, but most don’t. Most credit card companies allow you to request a limit increase every 6 months. Make it a habit to ask whenever available – it doesn’t hurt to ask!
- Check your score regularly: Knowing what your score is, and what factors are playing the biggest part in your score, helps you stay on top of what you need to do to continue to raise your score. Knowledge is power!
You’ll want to check your credit score at the three major bureaus, because that is what any lender will look at.