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CIBIL Score

The Credit Information Bureau (India) Ltd, better known as CIBIL, is the premier agency for providing credit reports and scores pertaining to individuals. CIBIL sources financial data of individuals such as loan and credit card information from leading banks and other financial institutions in India. This data is then presented in the form of a CIBIL credit report, also known as a Credit Information Report (CIR).

CIBIL was incorporated in 2000 and has continued to expand its presence throughout the country. It is backed by TransUnion International and Dun and Bradstreet, which are major global credit bureaus and agencies.

What is a CIBIL Score?

The Credit Information Bureau (India) Ltd, popularly known as CIBIL is a Reserve Bank of India (RBI) authorised credit agency. It offers CIBIL scores and CIBIL reports for individuals. A CIBIL score is generated by the bureau after considering an individual’s detailed credit information. The agency also offers credit report services to the banks and other NBFC (Non-banking financial companies). A CIBIL score is a three-digit number between 300-900, 300 being the lowest, that represents an individual’s credit worthiness. A higher CIBIL score suggests good credit history and responsible repayment behavior. CIBIL scores are calculated on the basis of at least 6 months of historical financial data of an individual. The data is fed into an algorithm with 258 different variables; each with a different weightage.

A CIBIL Score is a numeric summary of credit history that is calculated based on the following factors:

Track Record of Past Payments
  • Record of all past repayments
  • Consistently making payments on time leads to a higher score
  • Delayed payments leads to a lower score
  • Recent delayed payments makes a more negative impact
Previous Settlements, Defaults, Write-offs
  • Recent write-offs impact more negatively than older ones
  • Multiple write-offs lead to lower score
  • Write offs documented by lenders on previous debts lower score
  • Delays or defaults on secured loan repayments impact more negatively than unsecured loans
Loans as Proportion of Income
  • Low loan balance indicative of healthy credit usage and thus higher score
  • High loan balance reduces score
Secured Loans vs. Unsecured Loans and credit cards
  • High credit card balances lower score
  • Reliance on unsecured loans (credit cards) over secured loans viewed negatively
  • Lesser number of such accounts coupled with frequent payment history pushes up score
Loan Equities
  • Many loan enquiries to avail loans indicative of “credit hungry” behaviour, negatively impacts score

3 Essential Tips to have a great CIBIL Score

A CIBIL score of 750 and above is considered as ideal. It is important to have a high CIBIL score as it is useful when you are applying for a loan or a credit card. Keeping your CIBIL score on track since the beginning of the year can help you increase the chances of getting a loan approved easily. Maintaining a healthy CIBIL score is extremely important. Here are some important tips to have a great CIBIL Score.

  • Be Disciplined: Credit Card and loan repayments have the strongest impact on your CIBIL score. Hence, paying all your dues on time should be your priority.
  • Low Credit Utilisation Ratio: Keep your credit utilization ratio at 30% for a good CIBIL score. It is advised to get a credit card with higher top limit, if you are struggling to stay within the existing limit of the card.
  • Seek Variety: It is better to have a good combination of secured and unsecured debt in order to get a high CIBIL score. A Credit Card is an unsecured debt whereas a Car Loan is a secured debt.

5 Tips to Improve your CIBIL Score

It is important to have a high CIBIL score as it helps banks decide whether to extend a certain amount of credit to you or not. A good CIBIL score increases your chances for an easier credit approval. Here are five simple and effective ways that will help you improve your CIBIL score.

  • Check and Monitor your CIBIL Score: It is better to know your CIBIL Score regularly, as it will give you an idea about your credit status. You can monitor your CIBIL score by applying for subscription based credit score. In addition, you can also track your score by using free CIBIL score report from the leading credit bureaus in India. Another reason to check your CIBIL score is to see whether there are any errors or false records about your credit account.
  • Review your credit report: In addition to monitoring your CIBIL Score, it is advised to check your credit report as it might have errors. It is better to review your credit report regularly, as you can rectify them on time.
  • Limit your Credit Usage: Maintaining a discipline when it comes to credit card usage is of utmost importance. Make sure you are not exhausting your entire credit limit. Until your CIBIL score reaches 750, it is advised to not spend over 50% of your credit card limit.
  • Increase your credit limit: A credit limit is the total amount you can borrow through the card. Request your credit card issuer to increase your credit limit.
  • Make payments on time: In order to prove that you can manage your debt efficiently, make sure to pay all your dues on time. Avoid delays in paying your bills to maintain a good credit. Never pay partial amounts as it may showcase you as undisciplined credit payer and edge down your CIBIL score.

CIBIL Score Range

A CIBIL score ranges from 300 – 900, 900 being the highest. Generally, individuals with a CIBIL score of 750 and above are considered as responsible borrowers. Here are the different ranges of a CIBIL score.

NA/NH: If you have no credit history, your CIBIL score will be NA/NH which means it is either “not applicable” or no history”. If you have not used a credit card or have never taken a loan, you will have no credit history. You might want to consider taking credit, as it will help you in building a credit history and get access to credit products.

350 – 549: A CIBIL score in this range is considered as a bad CIBIL score. It means you have been late in paying credit card bills or EMIs for loans. With a CIBIL score in this range, it will be difficult for you to get a loan or a credit card as you are at a high-risk of turning into a defaulter.

550 – 649: A CIBIL score in this range is considered as fair. However, only a handful of lenders would consider offering you credit as this is still not the best CIBIL score range. It suggests you have been struggling to pay the dues on time. The interest rates on the loan could also be higher. You need to take serious measures to improve your CIBIL score even further for better deals on loan.

650 – 749: If your CIBIL score is in this range, you are on the right path. You should continue displaying good credit behaviour and increase your score further. Lenders will consider your credit application and offer you a loan. However, you may still not have the negotiation power to get the best deal on the rate of interest for loan.

750 – 900: This is an excellent CIBIL score. It suggests you have been regular with credit payments and have an impressive payment history. Banks will offer you loans and credit cards as well considering you are at the lowest risk of turning into a defaulter.