From SCORE Richmond by Doug Carleton:

Do you know what your credit score is?  If you don’t you should and moreover, you should keep up with it regularly. A healthy credit score is imperative in order to secure a bank loan. Generally, realizing that every deal is akin to snowflake if your score is in the 650 range most banks start to get uncomfortable, and it doesn’t take a score much below that to lead to a denial on your loan request.  There may be certain mitigating factors which could overcome a lower than normally acceptable credit score, but not very often.

Strong credit scores aren’t only important for bank loans, but also in locking in a loan from one of the many online non-bank lenders that have come into the marketplace because of banks’ reluctance to make small business loans.  There’s often more flexibility, however, a bad credit score is usually still a deal breaker. At SCORE, we can’t emphasize enough the importance of knowing your credit score.

Beyond loan approval why is it so important to regularly track your credit score? You may think your credit is exemplary when in reality, it could be riddled with errors that are affecting the overall score. In today’s age of hackers and data breaches, something might appear on your credit report that had nothing to do with you and you never knew it. Your best defense is a strong offense. You are entitled to three free credit reports, but they do not go into great detail. Order yourself a full credit report from one of the major reporting agencies.  They cost very little, and given what it could save you, it’s money well-spent.  It could mean the difference between a yes and a no.