What's the perfect credit score?

To ensure the best deal on any loan, aim for 780-plus on your FICO score. But, that's not always possible. Here are the minimum scores recommended by experts for the best rates on loans.

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Home loan
Home loan

EXPERT SAYS: "There's been a change with mortgage lenders in the past year or so, and higher scores are now required for the best rates because default rates have been going up," says Barry Paperno, consumer operations manager at FICO. "It's entirely doable to have a score as good as 760, but your payment history would have to be really clean and your credit card balances would have to be well below 50%."
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Last updated August 25 2010: 5:41 PM ET
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