With a bad Schufa rating, there is no credit and the chances of getting an apartment are also bad.
Everyone knows such statements, but how exactly does it work with the Schufa score? And what is a good and what is a bad score?
- What is the Schufa score anyway?
- More often than expected: The Schufa score is important here
- How to find out your Schufa score: free data overview
- Schufa base score, industry scores, rating levels – what is what?
- What is a good Schufa score? The score tables give it away
- The big mystery: how is the score calculated?
What is the Schufa score anyway?
The Schufa score is calculated by the well-known credit agency and is a value between zero and one hundred. It should reflect the statistical probability with which someone will meet their payment obligations. The higher the score, the more reliably someone pays their bills. Business partners, for example banks, telecommunications providers, dealers, but also landlords, use the Schufa rating to assess the creditworthiness of their customers or prospective tenants.
More often than expected: The Schufa score is important here
The Schufa score is involved more often than many consumers are aware of. Sure: When you apply for a loan, the bank checks your Schufa entries. And if you want to rent an apartment, you often have to bring Schufa information with you to the viewing appointment. But even if you conclude a mobile phone contract, buy the new television in installments in the electronics store or on account in the online shop, a Schufa query is usually made.
With your permission – without it, the business partner would be prohibited from obtaining information about you from Schufa. The so-called Schufa clause, with which you agree to the data query, is contained in the small print of contracts that you sign or confirm with a tick.
How to find out your Schufa score: free data overview
You can check your own Schufa score in two ways:
- You apply for a credit report (also known as Schufa self-assessment). This is the document that many landlords also require from those interested in housing. Your creditworthiness is indicated here, but not in a score. You will find your scores in the data overview that you will receive automatically. All information that Schufa has about you is also listed here. You can get the credit report for just under 30 euros directly from Schufa and affiliated partner banks. (As of August 2019)
- You only request the data overview. You have a statutory right to find out what information Schufa has about you. You can therefore request a free data overview from the credit agency once a year. Your scores and all available information about yourself are listed here. You can only apply for this overview directly from Schufa.
Schufa base score, industry scores, rating levels – what is what?
When the Schufa score is mentioned, the so-called base score is usually meant. This is a general guide value as a percentage that shows how your creditworthiness is doing.
There are also special industry scores, for example for telecommunications, online trading and banks. They reflect the payment behavior in the respective area and are therefore more meaningful. The individual industry scores can be quite different. Because just because someone always pays their mobile phone bill on time does not automatically mean that they will repay their loan installments just as reliably.
Unlike the general Schufa base score, the scores for the individual industries are not given in percent, but in so-called rating levels from A (very good) to M (very bad). There are also levels N, O and P if, for example, there are pending dunning or insolvency proceedings.
What is a good Schufa score? The score tables give it away
The data overview does not reveal which Schufa score is good. The so-called score tables provide an explanation of what your score means:
Schufa base score:
- over 97.5%: very low risk of payment default
- 95 – 97.5%: low to manageable risk
- 90 – 95%: satisfactory to increased risk
- 80 – 90%: significantly increased to high risk
- 50 – 80%: very high risk
- below 50%: very critical risk
If your score is below 90 percent, it is important to take steps to improve it. From a value of over 90 percent you already have a relatively good Schufa score and above 97.5 percent it is very good. Achieving a score of 100 percent is simply impossible. Because the Schufa basically takes into account the risk that someone dies and can therefore no longer meet his payment obligations.
Companies sometimes set very different standards up to which Schufa rating they grant their customers a leap of faith. While one company still supplies customers with a mediocre Schufa score on account, another company may have to pay in advance if they have a good score.
The big mystery: how is the score calculated?
You may now be wondering how Schufa came up with this score. You are not alone in this. The exact calculation method is a well-guarded business secret of the Schufa, which the credit agency does not have to disclose, as the Federal Court of Justice (BGH) decided in a 2014 judgment. Only the competent data protection authority and the data protection officers of the federal states and the federal government are familiar with the score procedure. Accordingly, there are many rumors and speculations about what can cause a bad Schufa score.