In India, banks use CIBIL, Experian, Equifax, or CRIF High Mark scores. Here, we will discuss all three credit scores.
The CIBIL, Experian, CRIF High Mark, or Equifax credit scores are all used by Indian banks to gauge the creditworthiness of borrowers. All of them are authorized by the Reserve Bank of India and regulated by the Securities and Exchange Board of India (SEBI).
A credit score is a three-digit number that tells about your creditworthiness. Lenders always check your credit score to get an idea about the risk involved in lending you money. Credit scores are important because they -
Show how responsible you are as a borrower
Speed up the decision-making process of loan approval
Gauge the likeliness of you defaulting on a loan
Inform about your payment history
Tell about the number of active loans under your name
Provide information about your credit age
TransUnion CIBIL is one of the most popular credit bureaus in India. Their members include banks, financial institutions, and NBFCs - over 5,000 in number. They maintain credit information of over 1,000 million individuals and businesses.
Apart from India, TransUnion CIBIL has a presence in Africa, Latin and North America, Asia Pacific, and Europe. They are characterized by the following facts -
It was established in the year 2000
Their rating ranges from 300-900, and a rating of 700 and above is generally considered good
You can check your score for free, but the basic plan of 1 month costs Rs.550 + GST, which will include your CIBIL report as well
Experian is a credit bureau that has supported over 3.5 billion credit decisions. It has been providing data and analytics tools for over 125 years. It is present in over 44 countries in America, Asia Pacific, Europe, and Middle East & Africa.
Here are some important facts about them -
It was established in the year 2006, but got registered in India as a credit information company in 2010
Their scores lie between 300-900, and a score above 700 is considered good enough by most lenders
It is free for the first time, but Rs.399 + GST for continued membership
Headquartered in Atlanta, Equifax is a global data and analytics company that has been functioning as a credit rating bureau since 2010. It is present in 24 countries all over the world.
Following is an overview of Equifax -
The company was established way back in 1899, but it received its license in India in 2010
Their scores range from 300-850, and a score of 670 and above is accepted for credit
You can check your score for free, but for a detailed report, you have to pay Rs.250 for a month’s subscription
CRIF High Mark is approved by RBI to function as a credit rating company in India. It caters to over 10,500 banks and financial institutions, and 600 insurance companies.
Their services are available in over 40 countries including India. In addition to these facts, there are a few others worth noting -
It was established in 2007, and it was licensed to operate as a credit bureau in 2010
Their scores range from 300-900, and a score above 700 is generally considered good
You can get monthly reports at Rs.399 + GST
Banks in India use the TransUnion CIBIL, Experian, Equifax, or the CRIF High Mark score. Out of these, the TransUnion CIBIL score is the one that is used most commonly. All credit rating bureaus generate credit scores and reports which help lenders assess the creditworthiness of borrowers.
The credit information bureaus receive information from various banks, insurance companies, and NBFCs and assess credit scores based on timely payments, credit age, number of loans, and other such factors. Banks may use any of the recognized credit scores according to their need and preference.
To maintain a good credit score and report, you must check your own report regularly. It is best to take a subscription to any one of the bureaus and monitor your score. After taking a subscription, you can also raise disputes if you see any discrepancy in your report.
Banks might choose to check the CIBIL or Experian score depending on the type of credit and their preference. But in general, banks check the CIBIL score before checking the Experian score.
Banks in India most commonly use the CIBIL score. But the Experian, Equifax, and CRIF High Mark scores are all used in India.
The SBI Bank prefers using the CIBIL score in most cases.
Both CIBIL and Experian use different models to assess your creditworthiness. Thus, your CIBIL score and Experian score might be different.
Both CIBIL and Equifax have their pros and cons. As CIBIL was established in 2000, and Equifax in 2010, if your credit history began prior to 2010, you will need to choose CIBIL. The CIBIL score is slightly costlier as compared to the Equifax credit score.
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