I acquired several new cards this month. (With the exception of First Premier, all of the cards in my siggy are new). I've come across the quoted conventional wisdom below a few times and am gearing up to follow this advice; however, I'm having trouble strategically selecting a card to let report a balance. Aside from selecting one that reports to all three agencies, are there any other factors I should consider? Also, should it always be the same card? Thanks in advance for any advice offered.
"The key is having one of them always report a zero balance each month by paying any amount charged before the statement posts. On the other card have a small amount (1-9% utilization) report on the monthly statement and then always PIF before the due date to avoid finance charges. IMO it doesn't matter which card you choose for each action."
Which cc is up to you. It doesn't have to be the same card.
Yes. And, if there is a card you use very frequently, it is sometimes almost impossible to avoid it reporting a balance (pending charges posting unpredictably). So in my case in nearly always is the same card reporting a balance, but it doesn't have to be.
The other point is that you don't always need to follow this advice, if you don't plan to app, and are not looking for auto credit-line-increases, it really doesn't matter. The score takes a snapshot of utilization, so if you have 5 balances reporting one month, and one the next, your score would be the same as if you had just one report both months. So don't go to extremes to meet the advice!
As 09Lexie and longtimelurker mentioned, it's a matter of preference. The key thing is knowing your spending habits so you do not become overextended, learning of the closing dates and due dates for all your new accounts so you can track these things periodically, etc. Also, depending on which card(s) would provide a maximum rewards benefit in the short or long term, use the one(s) that would do so or rotate as appropriate. Bottom line, what's been known to work for a lot folks (optimal reporting/util%) is usually letting one CC or TL report monthly with a balance while the others report 0 - just watch your utilization.
Thank you! @09Lexie @longtimelurker @FinStar
Your feedback is very helpful. I figured I was probably overthinking it, but I probably acquired too much at once and am adjusting to a new way of spending and tracking expenses and payments. I've taken the steps of finding out the statement and reporting dates for the new cards and I think I've got a handle on which one I will let report. Managing a busy household with 4 kids, sports schedules, and a high-demand job, I get nervous about tracking or forgetting important deadlines which is why I've been a cash-in-hand spender with one low limit cc for so long. I've bitten off quite a bit with the new CCs and want to make sure I manage it all correctly.
Thanks again @Lexie09
I've got Manilla all set up with my accounts. I signed up for an account and logged the info earlier this week after reading reviews on this site. I also set up an Excel spreadsheet for tracking everything in case I end up not liking Manilla. Now, I wait