770 Credit Score – Is It Good And What Does It Mean?
If you plan on applying for car loans, mortgages, or personal loans, you’re probably wondering if a 770 credit score is good enough to be approved or not.
Generally speaking, a 770 credit score is pretty good considering FICO credit scores range from 300-850, and the higher your number the better.
There are many factors that go into determining your credit score and we’ll look to break down the following topics:
- Credit Utilization
- Debt To Income Ratios
- On-Time Payment History
We’ll also go over what types of credit you should be able to apply for and what sort of rates you can expect.
By the end of this article, you should understand everything you need to know about your 770 credit score.
Average Credit Scores And Credit Rating Levels
In February 2021, one of the three major national credit bureaus, Equifax, conducted research to figure out what the average credit score was for a person in the US.
The research was based on the VantageScore rating levels, which is a credit model where all three major credit bureaus share data to come up with more consistent credit scores.
VantageScore numbers will usually be very similar to your FICO scores.
The research concluded that the national average credit scores based on VantageScore data are 698. So, as you can see, a 770 credit score puts you well ahead of the average and will qualify you for most loans and financial services at better interest rates.
For comparison purposes, any credit scores below 500 can be considered poor.
Credit scores from 600 to 700 would be considered a moderate level, you should strive for improving it from this range.
Any credit score above 750 is in an excellent range, with 800+ scores being superb.
Generally, anything above 750 is going to qualify you for most loans that you might want. But being qualified is not the same as being approved as there are many other factors that go into a lender’s decision besides just a credit score.
How Lenders View Your Credit Score
According to the Experian, only 1% of consumers with a 770 credit score or higher have a chance of being late with credit repayments. So, having a high score of 770 or above will make you look like a “safer bet” to lenders that you’ll repay your debts on time.
This is a good sign for them to move forward with your loan, and more importantly – include lower interest rates. Even if you could get approved for the same type of credit with a lower score, your interest rates would probably be higher.
The lower your score is, the higher the interest rates will be and that’s the main advantage of a 770 credit score as it helps lock in the lowest rates for most loan types.
Types Of Credit You Can Apply For With a 770 Credit Score
Since having a 770 credit score means that you are a responsible and organized borrower, you will have many loan options to choose from. Credit scores of 770 and above are certainly qualifying for the lowest interest rates, and that can greatly affect the total cost of the loan.
Let’s see what the benefits of this score level are for each of the loan types that you can apply for:
Getting An Auto Loan With 770 Credit Score
With a 770 credit score, you can get a car loan with interest rates as low as 3.49% at the time of this writing. It also means that you are more likely to be accepted for the loan, so you can see what your payment would be with these interest rates when using a car payment calculator.
An additional benefit of great credit scores in the 770+ range is that you can choose from different creditors, perhaps you might even be able to find a better option at a local bank or a credit union rather than with a car dealership that offers on-site credit approvals.
Overall, the minimum credit score to qualify for a car loan is around a FICO 600, but the interest rates could be hefty at up to 9.41%. So, there’s a clear benefit of having a 770 credit score or higher in this case.
Qualifying For Personal Loans
Getting approved for a personal loan shouldn’t be an issue if you have an excellent credit history. However, personal loans always come with much higher interest rates than other types of loans as they tend to be considered unsecured debt.
Still, there’s a clear difference in interest rates paid with an excellent score vs a bad credit rating in this case as well.
For instance, with a 770 credit score or a higher rating, you will usually get interest rates in the range of 10% to 12% for personal loans. That might sound crazy considering the difference we just talked about with car loans, but keep in mind that this is usually much riskier debt for a lender because it is often an unsecured loan.
Loan applicants with bad credit will see much higher interest rates than that if they can even get approval for such loans.
Interest rates for a personal loan with a credit rating between FICO 600 to FICO 700 range from 16% all the way up to 30%. You don’t need a calculator to figure out you’ll be paying a lot of interest if you go this route!
Applying For a Mortgage With a 770 Credit Score
Besides auto loans and personal loans, you can also apply for mortgage loans with a credit score of 770 or higher and get great interest rates. Getting a 30-year fixed mortgage loan for a house usually comes with an average interest rate of 5.2%.
(Editor’s note: at the time of this writing interest rates were fluctuating wildly. Check out our list of current interest rates for more up to date figures!)
However, even though a 770 credit score is very good, you’ll get the best rates if you can bump your credit score above the 800 level.
Getting Credit Card Approvals With a 770 Credit Score
A credit score of 770 is considered to be excellent, and it gives you a variety of options to choose from when it comes to picking a credit card.
For example, one of the many options you may have at your disposal is to get a card with a 0% interest introductory rate which usually lasts for 12-18 months. This can be especially beneficial if you have some big purchases coming up as you can take advantage of the interest-free promotion and spread out your payments.
You can also start to think about rewards credit cards depending on how you make most of your monthly spending and what some of your goals are.
Do you travel a lot? Maybe you should be getting a credit card that gives you points to redeem on hotels and flights.
Or maybe you just want cash back, in which case there are several cards that offer that and it’s just a matter of selecting the best rewards card the different companies can offer.
In my personal opinion, the Chase Sapphire card is the best all-around credit card for collecting and redeeming reward points. You can also redeem for cash back but this is really more beneficial for travel hacking.
Credit card issuers are more than happy to accept most people with scores in the 770+ range. Your score reflects your ability to be responsible with credit and make your payments on time, which obviously these companies want to see.
How To Reach a 770 Credit Score?
If you have a 770 credit score, you are already in a great spot when it comes to lower interest rates on any loans as we discussed. If you are aiming for this score level, and haven’t made it yet, there are several things that you can do to boost your credit score.
You can follow these actions to ensure your credit score reaches the FICO 770 area as soon as possible:
- Never miss a monthly payment
- Keep credit utilization rate below 30%
- Use credit monitoring services for quick updates
- Keep an eye on your debt-to-income ratio
On Time Payments
If you have negative items on your credit report that prevent you from reaching the 770 credit score, you can ask for free annual copies from each credit bureau and possibly dispute some of those items. Most negative entries will drop off after 7 years even if you do nothing.
Because negative items can be so hard to remove that means you want to pay extra attention to making your payments on time. It won’t hurt you if you’re a day or two late but anything over 29 days late usually results in a negative impact on your credit history.
Once you’ve maintained frequent and timely credit repayments, you can adjust your credit utilization, which represents the percentage of credit you are using at any moment compared to your overall credit available.
Ideally, you should be in the range of 17% to 30% utilization if you wish to reach the 770+ FICO score level.
So, if you need to spend a little bit more, the best option is to extend your credit limit and lower your credit utilization while having more credit at your disposal. Again, timely payments are crucial here, as there’s no point in raising the credit limit if you are going to be late on payments.
You should be monitoring your credit reports on a regular basis for any changes. One of the best ways to do this is to sign up for a free account at the three main credit bureaus: Equifax, Experian, and Transunion.
They generally update your credit score once a month and will also send you an email alert when they detect a change such as your credit score rising or falling, changes to your credit utilization, or any new inquiries from lenders.
Debt To Income Ratio
Your DTI ratio is another important factor in determining your credit score. In simple terms, this is all of your monthly debts added up (rent or mortgage, credit card minimum payments, student loans, car loans, child support, etc, etc.)
You take this total and divide it by your monthly income.
For example, let’s say you make $60,000 a year, your monthly income would be $5,000 ($60,000/12=$5,000), And let’s say you have $2,500 in total payments. Your DTI ratio would be figured out by dividing the $2,500 in payments by your $5,000 a month income, or a 50% debt to income ratio.
Ideally, you want to be under 36%, however, Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac-backed mortgage loans do accept DTI ratios as high as 50%.
Basically, your only option, if your DTI is out of whack, is to make more money or reduce your debts. Simple but hard lol.
Keeping Your Credit Score On 770+ Level
Keeping your credit score at a 770+ level qualifies you for most loans with more favorable interest rates. So, it’s essential to keep it that way once you reach your desired credit rating.
The biggest pointers to keeping your credit score high are to make sure you’re making your payments on time and don’t overextend yourself by using credit you don’t have the income to cover.
A proper budget will go a long way towards keeping you on the right track with your income and expenses so you don’t get in trouble and allow your score to drop after you worked so hard to achieve it.
Try to limit applying for any new credit as any hard inquiry on your credit report will have a slightly negative impact.
Also, do not cancel any credit cards or close any open credit accounts.
Some people think they are doing themselves a favor by removing that temptation but the age and history of the accounts actually help your credit score. But only if they remain open! It’d also be a good idea to use them every once in a while even if for a tiny purchase just to make sure the account doesn’t get closed automatically.
Boosting Your Excellent Rating Even Further
Although the 770 rating is a very good credit score, you can even boost it to reach that mentioned 800+ level to get the best rates possible.
Having any credit card debt that isn’t paid off on a monthly basis will hurt your chances of reaching FICO 800. So try to be mindful of that and pay off any open balances if at all possible.
You should aim for your credit utilization to be below 25% to give yourself a better chance of boosting your good credit score past the 800 mark.
The main benefit of having great credit history and a clean credit report means getting mortgages, auto loans, and other loans for higher amounts without collateral. Lenders will simply find you suitable for a loan at great rates due to your excellent score and repayment habits.
Getting a good credit score is difficult, and keeping it that way can be even tougher.
Our advice will guide you towards reaching the desired 770 credit score or higher.
Don’t be afraid to take advantage of the free yearly credit reports that the credit bureaus are obligated to provide you and keep an eye on any changes you might find.
Now that you’ve made it this far you should know that the keys to maintaining a good credit score include reviewing your credit reports regularly and making sure your payment history is free of any late payments. Lowering your credit utilization and your debt to income ratio will be two main areas to focus on for improving your credit.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ):
Can I buy a house with a 770 credit score?
Having a credit score of 770 or more will most likely get you approved for a mortgage.
Underwriters will then look at your credit history and factors such as your DTI ratio and utilization to determine if you can repay the loan.
Is FICO 770 a score above average in the US?
Yes, a 770 credit rating is above the average in the US. An average FICO rating for the last year was FICO 710. So, with a score of 770 or higher, you can probably qualify for most loans and credit cards.
How much interest will I pay on an auto loan with a 770 score?
You should easily be approved for an auto loan with a score of 770, but the interest rates can vary from one lender to another. It’s best to browse for the best rate between car dealerships, local banks, and credit unions.
How to keep a credit score at a 770 level?
It might be hard to keep your credit score at an excellent level, and keeping your credit utilization below 30% is only the first step. You also need to check your credit report regularly to make sure that your payment history doesn’t have any late payments listed.