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Regular Contributor
Posts: 222
Registered: ‎12-29-2008

How much should I pay down to get my score up?

I have a CC at my credit union- the limit is $1000., right now ( I just made a payment this morning) my balance is $540.  How low should I pay it, I'm hoping my scores will go up.  TU 567  EQ 580  EX (last one I bought here) 597.



Moderator Emerita
Posts: 3,091
Registered: ‎08-09-2008

Re: How much should I pay down to get my score up?

As far as paying down to increase your score, that depends. Is this your only card? If not, what are your limits and utilization on the others?


If this is your only card, and maximizing FICO points is your goal, then you should pay it down to less than $90, let the less than ninety dollars report, and then pay in full.


Ideally, you should have LESS than half of your cards reporting a balance, and your overall utilization should be between 1-9%, and the utilization on any individual card should be no more than 30% & ideally no more than 9% (someone may need to correct me on this last point).  


Read the Credit Scoring 101 thread stickied at the top of the forum for more insight.


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Senior Contributor
Posts: 3,741
Registered: ‎01-10-2008

Re: How much should I pay down to get my score up?

just a rule of thumb key:


over   75% maxed out, an AA target

over   50% too high, still at risk for AA

under 30% back in business

under 20% score building

 0-9% maximizing score


your CL is 1000 and your current balance is 540 so your util is over 50% on the card.  once you're under 50% you should get a score bump and so on until you're at zero.  it is recommended that you buy only what you can PIF each month or in short order.

EQ (DCU, Citi, PenFed)
EX (Amex, Chase, PSECU)
TU (Barclays, Discover, Walmart)
Regular Contributor
Posts: 222
Registered: ‎12-29-2008

Re: How much should I pay down to get my score up?

Yes, this is my only credit card. I really want to raise my fico scores and I have promised myself this is the last time I'll have it that high! 
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