Did you know..... That the FICO score you see is not necessarily the same one the bank sees? Yes, it is true. Many lenders for cars and mortgages use a different variation of the FICO score you see. The scores you see and get are a general score. It is a good guide to your credit health. However, scores are tweaked according to what lender is looking at it for what type of loan. For example, you know your score is 705. Credit Karma says so. The dealer runs a Trans Union credit report and it comes back 705. Ok, a match. Both scores are FICO scores, an industry standard score. The dealer figures a rate of 5.9% based off your 705 score and sends it off to Bank ABC. Bank ABC approves it but at a higher rate of 6.75%, not the 5.9% the dealer offered. The finance guy calls the bank and asks why the difference? Well the bank says that a score of 698 qualifies for the 6.65% rate. The finance guys says it's 705, not 698. The bank answers that they don't use the FICO score, they use a different score for auto loans. It's like a FICO but is marked an AU score, not FICO. The AU score is a more accurate score that has to do with auto loans. Many dealers run FICO scores and many run the AU version. So, the bank asks the finance guy to fax the complete FICO report so they can "justify" the lower rate to the underwriters. The deal gets done but it shows that not all credit scores are equal. The AU means AUto score. The AU score looks more closely at your previous auto payment history. If you had 2 different loans over the last 7 years with every payment on time, your AU score may be the same or a few points higher than the FICO. If, on the older loan, you had 1 or 2 payments that were late but caught up and were never late again, then the AU score would come in lower than the FICO because it tracks auto loans more closely. The FICO score tends to "forgive" a blemish that is over 3 years old so that's why the higher score. The AU score is less forgiving. On the flip side, if you have 7 lines of paid credit and 4 were car loans (of the 7) and every payment was perfect, your AU score could be higher than the FICO, even if you had 1 late payment on a credit card last year. The AU cares more about your auto history and less about the overall history. Both scores would be lower due to the 1 late credit card payment last year but the FICO would penalize you more than the AU score. The same thing applies to mortgage lenders. They have a specific score for mortgages. If you have had a few different mortgages over the years, and those lenders sold your mortgages several times, you have a nice list of opened and closed mortgages that were paid perfectly. This gives you a higher mortgage credit score. If you had 1 or 2 late mortgage payments over the last 7 years, your score will be severely affected. They hate late mortgage payments, even if it was over 3 or 5 years ago. You often have to write statements as to why you had those late payments which is sent to underwriting for consideration of your mortgage approval. The point is; Your FICO score is not always your actual credit score. If you are close to a cutoff, (700 to 699) tread lightly.