ATLANTA, Ga. (CBS46)- CBS46 is advocating for your financial health.
The new year is bringing a change in credit score calculations. The bottom line: It could help you big time.
DeKalb County financial expert and accountant Andrew Poulos told CBS46 how the new "UltraFICO score" works.
"Let's say the average Joe or Jane, trying to get a car loan, they're at 580 and the bank might require a 600 credit score or 620.
They're going to be on the verge of getting denied. By adding in their bank accounts, linking their bank accounts to their credit history, depending on the longevity of the accounts, if they don't have any non-sufficient funds in the past, and they have at least 400 dollars in the account, with Ultra FICO, that could boost up their score minimum 20 points, maybe 40, or 60. It just depends on their bank account history."
According to the FICO website, more than 15 million people who currently don't have a fico score could receive an "UltraFICO score", and access to credit and loans.
But Andrew Poulos wonders about a downside to taking on more debt.
"Are we incentivizing them to get credit and debt that they can't manage and afford? I always say that being able to afford something on paper and the practical aspect, being able to afford it meaning can you manage your money to pay that for the longevity or the life of the loan are two different aspects in life," Poulos said.
Credit reporting agency Experian is doing something similar.
It's called "Experian Boost" and it allows people to get higher credit scores based on payments of
phone, cable, and electric bills. Both programs appear to be in the pilot stage with roll-out dates in the coming months.
CBS46 reached out to ask more questions of a FICO spokesperson, and we're still waiting to hear back.