Have Selling Questions? Ask Poli


Fannie Mae customers! Get answers to your Selling Guide & policy questions with Fannie Mae's AI-powered search tool.

Launch Ask Poli for Sellers  

Guide Resources

Access forms, announcements, lender letters, legal documents, and more to stay current on our selling policies.

View Resources  

B3-5.1-02, Determining the Credit Score for a Mortgage Loan (10/05/2022)


This topic contains requirements for determining the loan-level credit score, including:

Representative Credit Score

The representative credit score for the loan is determined based on the credit scores of each borrower and is used to determine loan eligibility for manually underwritten loans with only one borrower, certain DU loan casefiles, and for pricing purposes (i.e., assessing LLPAs) on all loans. Follow these steps to calculate the representative credit score for a loan:

Step Description

Fannie Mae recommends obtaining at least two credit scores for each borrower.


Select a single score for each borrower.

  • When two credit scores are obtained, choose the lower score.

  • When three credit scores are obtained, choose the middle score. (If two of the three scores are the same, choose the middle of the three scores. For example: 700, 680, 680 = 680; 700, 700, 680 = 700)


If there is only one borrower, the single score for the borrower is the representative credit score for the loan.

If there are multiple borrowers, determine the applicable credit score for each individual borrower and select the lowest applicable score from the group as the representative credit score for the loan. If there is a borrower who does not have a credit score, determine the representative credit score for the loan based on the credit scores of the other borrowers on the loan.

Average Median Credit Score

For certain transactions, the average median credit score is used in place of the representative credit score to determine whether the minimum credit score requirement is met.

The following examples demonstrate how to calculate the average median credit score for eligibility purposes.

Borrowers on the Loan Application Step 1: Determine each borrower's median score Step 2: Average the median scores to determine the score for the loan
Borrower Scores: 590, 605, 648

Average: Not applicable

Representative credit score = 605

Borrower 1

Borrower 2

Scores: 590, 605, 648 Median = 605

Scores: 661, 693, 693 Median = 693

Average: (605+693)/2 = 649

Representative credit score = 605

Borrower 1

Borrower 2

Scores: 590, 605 Median = 590

Scores: 661, 693, 693 Median = 693

Average: (590+693)/2 = 642

Representative credit score = 590


Foreign Credit Reports and Credit Scores

With the exception of loan casefiles underwritten through DU, Fannie Mae permits the lender to use a credit report from a foreign country to document a borrower's credit history. (See B3-5.2-01, Requirements for Credit Reports.) If a credit score is provided with the foreign credit report it cannot be used to establish eligibility, or be delivered to Fannie Mae unless the credit score is the classic FICO, as required by  B3-5.1-01, General Requirements for Credit Scores. See Section B3–5.4, Nontraditional Credit History, for requirements that apply when a loan includes a borrower without an acceptable credit score.

Recent Related Announcements

The table below provides references to recently issued Announcements that are related to this topic.

Announcements Issue Date
Announcement SEL-2022-09 October 05, 2022
Announcement SEL-2021-08 September 01, 2021


Have You Tried Ask Poli?

Poli knows. Just ask.

Ask Poli features exclusive Q&As and
more—plus official Selling & Servicing

Try Ask Poli

Related Articles


Customers Recommend Ask Poli

If you have additional questions, Fannie Mae customers can visit Ask Poli to get information from other Fannie Mae published sources.

Guide Resources

For a comprehensive list of resources such as access forms, announcements, lender letters, notices and more.

Visit Selling and Servicing Guide Communications and Forms

Having Issues with Seeing this Page Correctly?

Use Firefox or Chrome   How to do a hard refresh in Internet Explorer
We recommend that you use the latest version of FireFox or Chrome.

Download Firefox
Download Chrome
  A hard refresh will clear the browsers cache for a specific page and force the most recent version of a page.
    Hold the Ctrl key and press the F5 key.

Email Us
If you still have Technical Support questions, feel free to emailAsk_Poli@fanniemae.com.