Credit scores used for a mortgage or home loan

When you apply for a mortgage or home loan, the lender will use your FICO score. In fact, three FICO scores will be used to determine what’s called your “middle score”.


The middle score
Your lender will pull one FICO score from each of the major credit bureaus (Experian, Equifax, and TransUnion). Of those three scores, your middle score is the second-highest score, or the score that’s in the middle when the scores are sorted from lowest to highest.


Let’s consider the following scenario in which you have the following FICO scores:

Equifax: 722

Experian: 750

TransUnion: 739


In this scenario, your middle score is the TransUnion score.


Other factors to consider

Keep in mind that while your middle score is the score that’s ultimately used during the mortgage process, your credit score is just one factor that your lender will consider when making a decision about your loan.


You can expect your lender to factor in your:

  • Expenses
  • Overall credit history
  • Length of time with your current employer
  • Source of your down payment


This list is not inclusive and will vary by lender and type of loan that you apply for. Before applying for a loan, be sure to mortgage shop to determine 1) the different loan types that the lender offers, 2) the requirements for the loan, and 3) the lender’s in-house requirements. All of this can and should be done before you agree to a hard credit check.