Most creditors use credit scoring to evaluate your credit record, especially to predict if you'll pay off your loans on time. Credit scores are one of the primary tools a creditor uses to decide whether to grant you credit, how much credit to grant you, and on what terms. For example, what interest rate to charge you.
High credit scores don't guarantee a good loan. You should not assume that because you have a high credit score that a lender must offer you a loan with a low interest rate or low fees. Also you shouldn't assume that if you receive a low credit score that you only qualify for a high-cost loan. Always shop around and compare all costs, including rates and fees.
Creditors typically will also access and consider your credit report. But many credit decisions are made very quickly, and it may be your credit score that is the main factor used in the decision. This is often true for credit card applications, for example.
If a lender denies your application based on a credit score, or gives you less favorable terms because of it, they are required to tell you that, and to disclose the score that they used as well as key factors that went into their decision.
Updated: November 2017