What is the AMP Credit Score?
The AMP Credit Score is a scoring model developed exclusively by eCredable to rate payment behavior of the current verified bill payment accounts in your AMP Credit Report. The AMP Credit Score gives a letter score (A - F) and numerical score (1 - 100) based on the monthly or regular bill payments made by an individual for expenses such as rent, utilities, direct pay insurance, pay day loans, membership fees, cell phone or internet, and other types of payments not reported to the national credit bureaus. The AMP Credit Score also includes a number from 1-100, which makes it easy for lenders to include the AMP Credit Score in their underwriting systems. The AMP Credit Score rates your historical bill payment behavior, and can give anyone considering your AMP Credit Report a useful tool to assist them in evaluating your credit worthiness.
What information goes into calculating the AMP Credit Score?
The AMP Credit Score is calculated using several pieces of information. The major categories are: the type of account (rental, utility, insurance, etc.), number of months of payment history, number of late payments and total amount paid.
The AMP Credit Score is calculated each time you create an AMP Credit Report and is based on the verifications you select to be included in that specific report. It will include verifications all current verifications as well as the verifications of all closed bill payment accounts.
What is not included in AMP Credit Score?
The AMP Credit Score does not use any of the following information in the calculation:
- Race, color, religion, national origin, sex and marital status
- Your age
- Where you live
- Employment information such as salary, occupation or employment history
- Credit inquiries
- Any bill payment accounts that you do not select to be included in your AMP Credit Report
- Bill payment accounts that have not been verified
- Bill payment verifications that are 45+ days old.
What is the difference between a credit score and the AMP Credit Score?
There are several major differences between a credit score, such as the FICO* score or one of the credit bureau scores, and the AMP Credit Score. First, a credit score is calculated only on credit information reported to the national credit bureaus by an individual’s creditors. The AMP Credit Score is calculated on an individual’s current verified bill payment information, contained in their AMP Credit Report, which is not reported to the national credit bureaus.
Because creditors report to the bureaus on a recurring and automated basis, credit scores are always calculated on ALL credit accounts in the bureau credit report. The consumer has no say or control in this process. The AMP Credit Score is calculated only on the current verified accounts you choose to include in your AMP Credit Report. Bill payment accounts that are not verified, or those verified more than 45 days before the creation date of the AMP Credit Report, are not calculated in the AMP Credit Score.
Standard credit scores are primarily a measure of debt and how responsibly that debt is paid. The AMP Credit Score is not a measure of debt. It is a measure of how responsibly your alternative financial obligations, i.e. your monthly living expenses, are paid. Because the scoring model does not consider debt, having higher payments for bill payment accounts, such as rent and utilities, does not have a negative effect on your score. For the same reason, having many bill payment accounts, instead of just one or two, will not have a negative effect on the score. Quite the opposite, the more accounts being measured by the AMP Credit Score model, the higher the score may be. Of course, the accounts must show a pattern of responsible payment history to have the most positive effect.
A credit score can be negatively affected by actions that result in creditors and other types of companies checking the individual’s credit, commonly known as a credit “inquiry.” Actions like shopping for a new loan or credit card, requesting an increase in a loan or credit card, or by opening or closing accounts, generally result in the bureau credit score going down. The AMP Credit Score is not negatively affected by this type of behavior. Because the primary types of bill payments that make up a credit rating are not debt based accounts, the most important considerations in calculating the score are more about the types of accounts a person has, how many months of credit history they have, and how responsibly they make their payments.
One of the biggest differences between credit scores and the AMP Credit Score is how “transparent” the model is. How credit scores are calculated is generally a bit of a mystery. At eCredable, we want people to understand how the AMP Credit Score works, and what it takes to get from a lower score like a C or a D, to an A. That is why we have designed the AMP Credit Score Estimator, so that every eCredable member who does not have an A score, can learn how to potentially enhance their financial standing and achieve their financial goals for themselves and for their families.
Can my AMP Credit Score help boost my bureau credit score?
No. Because the bill payment information contained in your AMP Credit Report is not reported to the credit bureaus, those accounts, and the AMP Credit Score, cannot be “combined” with your bureau credit score or your FICO score.
What is the AMP Credit Score range?
The AMP Credit Score ranges from A (the highest score) to F (the lowest score.) The AMP Credit Score also includes a number from 1-100, which makes it easy for lenders to include the AMP Credit Score in their underwriting systems.
Does eCredable report my AMP Credit Score to the national credit bureaus?
No. Your AMP Credit Score is not reported to the national credit bureaus. It is totally up to you who may view your AMP Credit Report and AMP Credit Score.
Do “inquiries” affect my AMP Credit Score?
No. The AMP Credit Score is not negatively affected when a creditor, employer or service provider views your AMP Credit Report.
Do late payments affect my AMP Credit Score?
Yes. A credit score will be affected by late payments. The negative impact of a late payment on your credit score is determined by the severity of the late payment (30, 60, 90 days, etc.), the number of late payments you have, and the length time since the last late payment.
Will closing bill payment accounts affect my AMP Credit Score?
No. Your AMP Credit Score will not be negatively affected when you close an alternative credit account the way traditional credit scores are affected by closing a traditional revolving credit account. Closed accounts may still be reported in your AMP Credit Report. However, the older the “Closed Date” of the verified account becomes, the less it contributes to your overall AMP Credit Score.
Should I register an account that has a late payment? Won’t this hurt my score?
When a lender views a credit file, they are generally looking for a pattern of payment behavior that establishes the creditworthiness of an individual. When considering the alternative credit history being “volunteered” by an individual, a lender probably wants to know that they are being provided enough of the individual’s payment history to make an informed decision. If you pay rent on time, but choose not to register your utilities because of an occasional late payment, the lender may wonder why your AMP Credit Report and AMP Credit Score do not include your utilities.
Some lenders may prefer to see all the bill payment history you have, than to try to make a lending decision knowing you are presenting only certain “select” accounts, but not all the bill payments you make.
Yes, a late payment will have a negative impact on your score. How much is dependent on how recently the late payment occurred, and how severe the late payment was (30, 60, 90 days). It will be up to the credit grantor to determine the level of risk the late payment(s) present under their lending guidelines.
What if I have a lot of late payments?
If you have established a poor payment record with your bill payment accounts, now is the time to begin establishing a good track record of paying your bills on time. eCredable can help guide you toward a stronger financial position so that in time, you can show anyone checking your credit that you take your financial obligations seriously, and can be a good credit risk. The eCredable AMP Credit Score Estimator is a great tool to measure how you are performing, and track your progress from a C, D or F score to a B and on to an A.
What are the credit scoring factors that are included with my AMP Credit Score?
Scoring factors are provided with the AMP Credit Score to explain how items in your credit report influenced your overall score. These factors explain the main reasons your score is not higher than it is. You can use the factors to help develop a plan to build your score over time. There are always 4 factors, so even if you have an A, you will still see 4 factors associated with your score.
Does everyone have a credit score?
Perhaps. Anyone who pays bills can have an AMP Credit Score, but without a SSN or ITIN, access to "traditional" credit may be difficult. To obtain an AMP Credit Score simply become an eCredable member, register your monthly bill payment accounts, and request a verified AMP Credit Report. An AMP Credit Score is free with your AMP Credit Report. Persons without a SSN or ITIN will not have a credit bureau score.
Will my AMP Credit Score be penalized for shopping around for a loan or the best interest rate?
Unlike credit scores, the AMP Credit Score is not affected by shopping for an apartment, cell phone, best loan rate, etc.
Who decides if I get my loan?
It is up to the lender to determine if you meet their criteria for a loan. Each company you apply with will have different requirements to consider before making a decision to extend credit. eCredable does not extend, approve, or deny credit.
How do I get a good AMP Credit Score?
The AMP Credit Score is based on several major factors:
- the type of account (rental, utility, insurance, etc.)
- the number of months of payment history
- if payments were made on time
- the total amount paid for each bill payment account
- the number (if any) of late payments
- the length of time since the most recent late payment, and the total amount past due (if applicable)
Bill payment accounts fall into 4 categories or “Tiers.” eCredable uses the tier system established by Fannie Mae, Freddie Mac and the FHA (“GSE’s”) to guide mortgage lenders in evaluating thin-file/no/file home buyers, as the basis for the AMP Credit Score. The tiers present the various types of bill payment accounts in order of importance to the lenders who are evaluating alternative credit accounts. Housing payments of any type comprise Tier I and carry the highest points toward the total score. Tier II carries the second highest number of points per account, and Tier III carries a smaller number of points per account. The highest score comes from having several Tier I, Tier II and Tier III credit accounts for 24 months, all paid on time. Tier IV accounts can help add points to the total score, but contribute the least value to the score. You can use the AMP Credit Score Estimator to see how these accounts may affect your estimated score.
Tier I credit payment include:
Housing - Rental
Housing - Mortgage
Housing - Rent to own
Tier II credit payments include:
Phone – Mobile or Land
Revolving accounts/Credit cards
- Unsecured loan
Tier III credit payments include:
All insurance types with payments made at least quarterly (excluding payroll deductions)
Tier IV credit payments include:
Leases for furniture, appliances or durable goods
Layaway payments made monthly
Condominium/Homeowner association dues
Gym and physical therapy payment plans
Childcare and day care with regularly scheduled payments
Parking with regularly scheduled payments
- Subscriptions and memberships with regularly scheduled payments
How do I build my AMP Credit Score?
The first thing to do is to look at the “Factor Statements” that explain what caused your score to be what it is. If one of your Key Factors is “Too Many Delinquencies” for example, making your payments on time will gradually increase your score over time.
Next, have you included Tier I, Tier II, and Tier III bill payment accounts? Because the payment tiers carry different weights of importance, having several Tier I, Tier II and Tier III accounts paid on time will automatically help build a higher score than an equal number of Tier IV accounts.
Your AMP Credit Score is calculated on current bill payment verifications. You will want to time your bill payment verifications so that you build your report with current verifications and receive the most benefit in the scoring calculation.
What is the AMP Credit Score Estimator?
The AMP Credit Score Estimator is a free tool provided to you by eCredable, designed to help you understand what your AMP Credit Score might be after your bill payments have been verified. The simulator will also give you a general idea of how your AMP Credit Score will be affected as you add or delete bill payment accounts. The AMP Credit Score Estimator cannot tell you exactly what the score will be on your verified AMP Credit Report, but it provides an estimated answer to questions such as, “What if I add my cell phone to my rental and two utilities?” or, “What if I don't use my rental account?”, and provides an instant estimate of what your score might be under these types of scenarios.
How can the AMP Credit Score Estimator help me improve my AMP Credit Score?
The AMP Credit Score Estimator uses the bill payments you have listed in your eCredable online account. This means as you add and/or change any of your bill payment information in the My Bills section of your account, you can see how those changes might affect your score.
Will the score I received from the AMP Credit Score Estimator be different from the AMP Credit Score on my verified AMP Credit Report?
Likely. The AMP Credit Score Estimator is designed as a “guide” to show what an AMP Credit Score might be based on the different combinations of bill payment accounts that are included in the estimator. There is no way to know “exactly” what your AMP Credit Score will be until all the bill payment accounts on your AMP Credit Report are verified, and the AMP Credit Score is calculated. It is possible that you may have forgotten how long you have had certain accounts, and your AMP Credit Score could be higher than the simulator projects. On the other hand, you may have forgotten about a late payment you made on a certain account, in which case your AMP Credit Score will be lower once the verified late payment is calculated into the score. However, the AMP Credit Score Estimator is designed to be fairly accurate when you have provided accurate bill payment information and history.
I am not a yet a member. Can I use the AMP Credit Score Estimator?
Yes. You can click here to use some of the features of the AMP Credit Score Estimator: http://www.ecredable.com/resources/estimator However, if you are not yet a member, you have will not have access to the full features of the AMP Credit Score Estimator. The AMP Credit Score Estimator is designed to estimate your score based on the bill payment accounts you have selected from your eCredable member account, and the bill payment history that you provide. Until you are a member, you will not be able to use your actual bill payments to estimate your score. However, as a member, you are able to get a scoring estimate based upon unverified account and payment scenarios. This will give you a general idea of what your score could be.
What is AMP Score Watch?
AMP Score Watch estimates where your AMP Credit Score is now, and tracks your progress for you as you move toward achieving your AMP Credit Score goal. You will receive an email each month telling you what your estimated score is, and if has changed up or down, so you can see how well you are doing.
How can AMP Score Watch help me improve my AMP Credit Score?
AMP Score Watch can help you improve your AMP Credit Score by providing a way to monitor the progress toward your score goal. Using AMP Score Watch, you never have to guess how your score is doing. We will also send you tips that will help you achieve the best score possible.
Will the score I received from AMP Score Watch be different from the AMP Credit Score on my verified AMP Credit Report?
So long as you have accurately updated your Bill Payment information, it should be very close. AMP Score Watch is designed to show what your AMP Credit Score could be based on the payment information you enter into your eCredable account. There is no way to know “exactly” what your AMP Credit Score will be until all of your selected bill payment accounts are verified, and the AMP Credit Score is calculated. But if the payment information you enter is accurate, AMP Rate Watch will give you a fairly close estimate of what your verified AMP Credit Score will be.
For example, perhaps you forgot about a late payment you made on your electric utility account. Having forgotten, you enter only timely payments into AMP Score Watch. However, after the bill payment is verified, it’s discovered a year ago and a half ago, you had a 30 day late payment to your electric utility company. In this case, your AMP Credit Score will be lower than AMP Score Watch showed since the late payment wasn’t factored in the AMP Credit Score calculation.
I am not a yet a member. Can I use AMP Score Watch?
No. AMP Score Watch is a free benefit only to eCredable members. Remember, Basic membership in eCredable is FREE. Just sign up with eCredable and you can begin using AMP Score Watch today, and take advantage of all the terrific tools and benefits of our membership.
What is a Key Factor?
A credit score is based on the verified bill payment history contained in your AMP Credit Report. There are 32 factors used to determine the score. Certain factors will carry more weight than others. You will notice that each category of accounts (Tier I, Tier II , Tier III and Tier IV) has similar factors. These factors fall into four basic categories. The four categories that most influence the AMP Credit Score are called “Key Factors.”
The Key Factors in order of importance are:
Payment History – Your payment history is one of the most important aspects of the calculation. Creditors want to know that you pay your bills responsibly. Timeliness of payments, amount of payments, number of late payments, severity of late payments and the number of months since the last late payment are responsible for the largest percentage of your score. The more bill payment accounts contained in your AMP Credit Report that are paid on time, the higher your AMP Credit Score will be.
Late payments will have a negative effect on your score based on how many times you were late, how recently the last late payment occurred, the severity of the late payment(s) (30, 60 or 90 days late), and how much was owed at the time the late payment occurred. As an example, a recent 30 day late payment will have a more negative impact than a 30 day late payment that is 24 months old. Establishing a pattern of timely payments will help you reach the highest possible AMP Credit Score.
Types of Accounts – This factor considers the types of accounts, or Tiers of accounts, that you are responsible for. This Tier model was established by Fannie Mae and FHA and defines the importance of specific types of alternative bill payment accounts that may be considered when underwriting a mortgage on an individual who has little or no traditional credit with the national credit bureaus. It has become a standard in the credit industry for alternative credit accounts. The type of accounts carries the second highest point potential toward your score.
Age of Credit History – This factor takes into account how many months you have been paying for each bill payment account up to 24 months. Creditors want to see a stable pattern of timely payment, so longer time frames carry more weight than very short time frames. For example, an electric company account with 24 months of history, or multiple electric company accounts totaling 24 months of history, will carry more weight than an electric company account with only 6 months of payment history. The more months you can show for a specific account type, the more you will help your score.
Payment Amount Due – This factor takes into account the total amount you make in bill payments for each bill payment account. Making higher total monthly payments will carry more weight than making lower monthly payments. As explained above in “What is the difference between a credit score and the AMP Credit Score?”, the AMP Credit Score does not measure “debt”, it measures payment history. Having more payments to rate, and making higher payments responsibly, actually helps your AMP Credit Score.
Your AMP Credit Score Factors will be accompanied by a description, or a “Factor Statement” to explain why your score isn’t higher. The reason codes can be used to help you determine how to improve your score over time.
What are the Factor Statements and how can they help me?
Each factor has a number assigned to it with a description of how that factor affected the score. The factor and its description are designed to help you understand the reasons why your AMP Credit Score isn’t higher. No matter what your score is, A, B, C, D or F, every AMP Credit Score will always have 4 reason codes associated with it.
Like the score, the factors are not static. This means, as information in your AMP Credit Report changes, the factors that play a key role in your score may also change. As an example, if one of the factors in your score was “Time since delinquency for verified utility too short,” it is possible that at some point in the future, that particular factor may be replaced by another factor because the late payment is much farther in the past.
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