730 Credit Score Is Good, But Not Excellent In 2017

Is 730 a good credit score? Yes, but it’s not going to open as many doors as it once did.

Sorry to rain on your parade, but if you have a 730 credit score may not truly be in the “excellent” category like a top ranking credit card site claims:

730 credit score is not excellent

However, as 2016 unfolds you still will have a relatively decent chance at getting approved for many top reward credit card offers with a FICO score of 730 along with those offering 0% APRs on purchases and balance transfers.

Why is it that so many credit websites and even a few financial pundits still believe 730 is top tier credit? Sure it is great but it’s not the absolute top tier. Here’s what 730 can (and cannot) do for you…

First of all you should keep in mind that your score is not the only determining factor in whether or not you will get approved for a credit card or loan. Some of the other factors which are weighed heavily are:

  • Income: No, you needn’t be pulling down six figures to get to this score either, but rather you just need to be employed with at least an average income. If you submit an application and put some low figure like $10k for your annual earnings, you will almost certainly get rejected for anything other than a sub-prime or secured card (exceptions can be made though for those who have significant assets – i.e. retired or rich).
  • History: It’s actually possible to hit a credit score of 730 while in college if you pay your bills on time and have several cards in your name. However, you can bet that a 730 score coming from a 2 year old credit file will be scrutinized much more closely by the banks than a 10 year file with the same score.
  • Debt: How much debt do you have? How do your debt levels compare to your total available credit? Even if you really do have a high score, a high debt to credit ratio might trigger a denial.

So any one of the above factors can nix an approval, no matter what your score is. That being said, here’s what you can expect on average with a 730 FICO score…

Most (but not all) reward cards

You should have a good shot at qualifying for many of the hottest cash back and travel cards on the market, but not even 730 is a guarantee of approval.

If you look on the forum you will regularly see posts from people who have scores in the 730 to 750 range and sometimes they still get denied for some of the better reward cards from American Express, Discover, and Chase (but maybe something else on their credit reports may have influenced these decisions). However, the odds are still in your favor of getting approved for them, so it’s certainly worth giving it a try. The worst that can happen is that they politely decline. It’s important to remember that banks need your business and then need a constant influx of new customers to remain profitable. Sometimes business conditions require them to be more selective than usual but they generally always welcome people with strong credit scores.

Low (but not perhaps not the lowest) mortgage rates

According to MyFICO, the average score range to get the best rates is 760 to 850. If you have a 730 FICO score with a few years of history and nothing sketchy (no bankruptcy, delinquencies, etc.) you probably should still be able to get good rates… but they won’t be the best.

Probably the best rate-tier for car loans

You know those car commercials which tout 0% for 60 months – or when 0% isn’t being offered – the advertised rate may be another low number like 1.9% or 2.9%?

So what’s the minimum credit score requirement for a 0% auto loan, or whatever the lowest rate that might be available?

To get the low rates you hear in the commercials, you will need to have what they deem to be “tier 1” credit. Most auto manufacturers have 3 (but sometimes 4) tiers of financing:

  • Tier 1 = 720 to 850
  • Tier 2 = 700 to 719
  • Tier 3 = 670 to 699
  • Tier 4 = 639 to 669

These are only examples. Keep in mind different auto manufacturer might have different score ranges for each of their credit tiers.

However, the bottom line here is that fortunately a 730 FICO score should still probably qualify you for tier 1 (the lowest advertised rates), or worst case the tier 2 (which will likely be couple percentage points higher). You’ll probably need to set your sites on getting at or above 750 nowadays to get into the top tier.

Written or last updated January 2017

The responses below are not provided or commissioned by the bank advertiser. Responses have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by the bank advertiser. It is not the bank advertiser's responsibility to ensure all posts and/or questions are answered.

One consideration with a home mortgage…the more points you pay on the loan, the more likely an applicant is to get approval all things being equal. That’s why APR interest rates are so important…so loan buys know the actual cost of obtaining a home loan. There are o/a 3.1% fixed loans that are exorbitantly expensive and some which are not depending on loan fees, points paid up-front, etc. In sum, it’s important to compare apples with apples and oranges with oranges!

Each agency that offers extends credit to consumers has a scale they use, so as one other person noted, you would be well advised to research a little which scale is being used for the item you are seeking credit or some type of approval. For example, mortgage companies look at all three scores from the agencies and typically use the mid range. For example, if you have a 709 transunion, 688 Experian and 720 Equifax, they will use the 709 transunion. Furniture retailers use another scale, car dealers use another, credit card people use another, so on and so on. Check with the agencies if possible before having a hard pull done on your credit, these combined will lower your points, if you are not careful, plus, they take 2 years to disappear from your report. I have been pretty successful in getting cards, cars and pre-approvals from mortgage/banks for home loans, but I typically do a lot of research, to improve my chances. Lastly, a frigging law needs to be enacted to bring the reporting and collection system for credit scores in line with each other. They way it is set up now is a bunch of crap, but we are all jumping through the hoops, because that’s the way it is.

Joe from houstin

Raised my credit score from 480 to 593 in about a month by getting a secured black card from capital one, and added had one my parents add me to all their credits cards as authorized user, i dont use it them just reap the benefits of their timely payments and credit limits.

Yes, have no debts, pay cash for everything, destroy your credit card. Way to go. We are being sucked dry by the system. But wait, i want to fly to London, and they won’t accept cash. They have me by the short and curlies. What a surprise! Guess I’ll stay home and drive the Lamborghini!

Funny… Boa was my where I got my first credit card. I had no previous credit(perhaps that had something to do with it?) , they asked if I wanted to “check” if I was eligible the day I opened a checking account with them. A moment later they had approved me for $700 on the cash rewards credit card. I found out that getting a store credit card at bestbuy was a harder feat.

I have a credit score of 730. I was approved for an AMEX Everyday card. I have a history of no late payments, credit utilization is 35% and no derogatory marks. I also have a US Bank Cash Rewards card.

How is best to raise my credit score? I have no credit cards and don’t want any

A mortgage loan is by far the best way to raise your scores. I had so-so credit when I was approved for a hard money loan (way back when) and after a year of making the payments my score jumped nearly 100 points. You should consider getting a couple of credit cards that use to make small monthly purchases and pay the balances off every month just after the reporting date. This way you carry no interest, but they report on time payments with low utilization. That should jump your credit nicely after your “account age” extends. — cheers and GL

I’m not really sure who you guys are going through, but we bought our house last year, March 2013, and locked in 3.15 fixed on a 30 year loan through US Bank. My FICO was 735 and the wife’s was 745. You can still get excellent rates with a score of 730, especially if you have a bank you have worked with for many years. We also bought a car last summer and US Bank said they would beat any other finance offer we were given by 0.25% and they stuck to their word!

730 Fico Score here and denied by Bank of America

BofA is notoriously strict with their credit cards. I bank with them, but will probably never waste an application on their cards. IF I get a mortgage (down the road)on a rental property from them, I might reconsider.

I have a 730 and just denied by Bank of America.

I went to Costco and get my American Express Free, I paid everything with this card inside the USA or Outside. Never paid Medical bills.

Just got approved for Quicksilver with a credit score of 810.

Being Debt Free is the best score anyone can have.

The thing is, people need to be cognizant of which score is being represented. A 730 FICO score IS a pretty good score, and usually gets you the best- or second-best tier of terms with most lenders. However, a 730 Vantage Score is completely different. It’s about equivalent to a 670 FICO score. To add to the confusion, there are many other scores developed by the credit bureaus or other companies that have scales very similar to FICO but are calculated very differently. So, the moral is, first check which model the score represents, before putting much weight into the actual number.

I totally agree. 730 is diddly squat these days. Yes it will be good enough for a lot but you won’t get top tier rates or anything like this. I think a 760 or 770 FICO credit score is what I would consider to be “excellent.”

To me having a rock star credit score is like having a sound portfolio…its a must!