Understanding your credit score. How do you measure up?

Credit scores in New Zealand range between 0 – 1000. After getting your free credit score here you may wonder how you measure up. Check out the categories below to understand more about your credit score band.

Its important to note that different credit bureaus in New Zealand have different scores. The information below is generalised. Your specific characteristics may be different from the generalised characteristics below.

0 Score
Ok, that’s not what you were hoping for. A 0 credit score indicates extremely low creditworthiness and is going to have anyone who runs a credit score check on you ask a lot of questions. Generally a 0 credit score means you are bankrupt, in hardship, but can also mean the credit bureau doesn’t have enough information on you to form a score. It is worth reading this article.

1 – 494 Score
A score less than 494 denotes a poor credit score. Generally if you are in this range it will because you have defaulted on credit contracts or have unpaid defaults or have missed payments on your credit cards, overdraft, or loan facilities including mortgages. Credit providers may treat you will a lot of caution and generally you will have to provide security for any loans you take, or pay high interest rates.

495 – 649 Score
A score in this range is a below average score and suggests you may have unfavourable information on your credit record. This may be because you are in a younger age bracket or you may have missed payments/arrears on credit facilities, or have unpaid defaults Having too much debt may also cause a low score in this range.

650 – 768
A score in this range puts you in the average category. A score in this range may mean the credit bureau has good information on you and your record indicates that you can meet your liabilities. While a person in this score range may have missed a few payments to credit providers they generally don’t have unpaid defaults, certainly not recently. Credit providers may generally be accommodating toward you although you may find it harder/more expensive to access credit than someone with a higher credit score.

769 – 844
A score in this range indicates a strong credit score. If you are in this category your credit file shows a very strong ability to manage liabilities. Generally people in this category have a demonstrated track record of meeting their liabilities on time. Given the established credit history you’re more likely to be older and more likely to be a home owner. Your likely to have a lot of choice among your service or credit providers, and be able to negotiate great rates.

845 +
A score of 845 or above is an excellent credit score. You have an excellent credit history and should be eligible for the best credit cards, loans and utility services. You will likely be able to access unsecured finance easily and be able to negotiate great rates on your mortgage or motor vehicle finance.

Its important to note that credit scores are still relatively new in New Zealand and there is wide variation between the different credit bureaus that provide the score. Whether or not your bank provides comprehensive credit information to the credit bureau may also determine your credit score.

Read more:
How to improve your credit score.
I have a zero credit score, what should I do?