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Barrett Burns

Contributor |  In Credit Score, Credit 101

Barrett Burns is president and chief executive officer (CEO) of VantageScore Solutions LLC, an independently managed joint venture of the three national credit reporting companies, Equifax, Experian and TransUnion, and the company behind the VantageScore® consumer credit scoring model. He is a 2011 member of the Federal Reserve Board’s Consumer Advisory Council and a director of the Homeownership Preservation Foundation.

A Roadmap to Better Credit Scores

Credit Score

A Roadmap to Better Credit Scores

A Roadmap to Better Credit Scores

I’m often asked about the best ways to improve a consumer’s credit scores. Is it by paying bills on time or is it better to pay off credit card debt? Or, is it by avoiding any new, unnecessary credit?  The answer, of course, is that all of those factors are important to achieving and maintaining... Read More

What Really Influences Your Credit Score?

Credit Score

What Really Influences Your Credit Score?

What Really Influences Your Credit Score?

It seems like a very straightforward question that deserves an equally straightforward answer, but the biggest credit-scoring question consumers want answered is anything but simplistic. Consumers want to know, of course, “What influences my credit score?” The short answer is: Your credit behaviors reflected in your credit files at the three largest credit reporting companies... Read More

A Credit Insider’s Tips for Smart Holiday Spending

Personal Finance

A Credit Insider’s Tips for Smart Holiday Spending

A Credit Insider’s Tips for Smart Holiday Spending

The holiday shopping season is now in full swing. Malls and other retail outlets have their decorations up and holiday music playing, enticing us all to shop for our friends and family. And as inevitable as hearing “Frosty the Snowman” is the chorus of checkout clerks asking shoppers if they’d like to open store credit... Read More

Who Doesn’t Have A Credit Score? (Hint: It Could Be You)

Credit 101

Who Doesn’t Have A Credit Score? (Hint: It Could Be You)

Who Doesn’t Have A Credit Score? (Hint: It Could Be You)

For numerous reasons unrelated to their ability to pay back loans, millions of creditworthy borrowers find themselves unscoreable under traditional credit scoring models. Yet at the same time, lenders are seeking new pools of creditworthy borrowers. With such a win-win proposition, it’s amazing we are still discussing how to solve this challenge. A basic requirement... Read More

The Hidden Benefits of Credit Scores

Credit 101

The Hidden Benefits of Credit Scores

The Hidden Benefits of Credit Scores

In my recent Credit.com column, Credit Score Obsessed? Don’t Be, I likely surprised many readers by recommending that consumers pay less attention to their credit score and focus their credit management energies on their credit report. This column is likely to be more expected because I want to offer what I believe is good and beneficial... Read More

Lenders Look at More than Your Credit Score

Personal Finance

Lenders Look at More than Your Credit Score

Lenders Look at More than Your Credit Score

You may be happy to learn that a common misconception held by even financially savvy individuals is that a bank's decision to lend hangs solely on a person's credit score. The credit score is certainly an important part of the approval and pricing criteria, but generally it is not the sole determining factor.

The Ups And Downs Of Your Credit Score

Credit Score

The Ups And Downs Of Your Credit Score

The Ups And Downs Of Your Credit Score

If you’re getting tired of seeing your credit score rise and fall like the tides, then you’re not alone. We’ve found that among people’s chief complaints about their scores is the fact that they don’t understand why they go up and down. [Free Resource: Check your credit for free before applying for a credit card]... Read More

Credit Score Obsessed? Don’t Be.

Credit Score

Credit Score Obsessed? Don’t Be.

Credit Score Obsessed? Don’t Be.

It may sound strange coming from the president and CEO of a credit scoring company, but when I meet someone obsessing over his or her credit score, I always tell them the same thing: don’t worry so much about being up 10 points or down 20. Instead, focus on the direction your score is moving... Read More

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