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Established Member
Posts: 23
Registered: ‎12-22-2013
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Keeping store cards at zero balance

I recently opened 4 store cards but do not intend on using them.  The main reason why I opened them was to decrease utilization.  What is most beneficial? Keeping the card at a zero balance or making small purchases and paying it off every month. Is there a difference in regard to the creditors reporting it to the bureaus?

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Registered: ‎10-07-2013
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Re: Keeping store cards at zero balance


nbsiddiq wrote:

I recently opened 4 store cards but do not intend on using them.  The main reason why I opened them was to decrease utilization.  What is most beneficial? Keeping the card at a zero balance or making small purchases and paying it off every month. Is there a difference in regard to the creditors reporting it to the bureaus?


If these store cards are issued by Comenity or GE (which most are!), then your account will not report to the CBs if there is no statement that month, and no activity = no statement. Also, if they're GE cards, GE gives nice CLIs typically every 4 statements, so you'd be delaying CLI if you don't use it. 

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Re: Keeping store cards at zero balance


k-s wrote:

nbsiddiq wrote:

I recently opened 4 store cards but do not intend on using them.  The main reason why I opened them was to decrease utilization.  What is most beneficial? Keeping the card at a zero balance or making small purchases and paying it off every month. Is there a difference in regard to the creditors reporting it to the bureaus?


If these store cards are issued by Comenity or GE (which most are!), then your account will not report to the CBs if there is no statement that month, and no activity = no statement. Also, if they're GE cards, GE gives nice CLIs typically every 4 statements, so you'd be delaying CLI if you don't use it. 


+1.  And, of course, lenders like their cards to have use, so they can earn money.

OP, what store cards do you have?




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Established Member
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Re: Keeping store cards at zero balance

Express, Blair, KingSize, OneStopPlus, Buckle

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Re: Keeping store cards at zero balance


nbsiddiq wrote:

Express, Blair, KingSize, OneStopPlus, Buckle


Those are all Comenity cards with fairly specific uses.   IIRC, they do eventually close TLs for inactivity but it takes them quite a while (over a year, possibly pushing into 2 years). 

I have a Gold Violin card (sister brand to Blair) that I opened late August.   I've managed to put a monthly charge on it, in the hopes that I might get a CLI with activity.  It's probably still new for CLIs, but we'll see how that works later on. 




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Established Member
Posts: 23
Registered: ‎12-22-2013
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Re: Keeping store cards at zero balance

Most of the cards have a $500 limit. I am thinking of spending $30-50 and then making $10 monthly payments each month. Is this a good strategy?

Established Member
Posts: 23
Registered: ‎12-22-2013
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Re: Keeping store cards at zero balance

Sunrise,

 

Does your Violin report to all 3 agencies monthly?

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Re: Keeping store cards at zero balance

[ Edited ]

^^I would say that is no because then you would pay interest.

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Super Contributor
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Registered: ‎09-13-2013
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Re: Keeping store cards at zero balance

I would pif and not leave balances. As long as there is activity within the month they should still generate a balance. You don't want to pay the high interest. So pay in full whatever you charge. As long as you have another card that reports less than 9% 

Established Member
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Registered: ‎12-22-2013
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Re: Keeping store cards at zero balance

The reason I would want to pay off say $50 over a stretch of 4 months would be to have it reported. I want them to constantly report.  If I pay off the balance to zero and do not use the card for another 3 months they will not report.

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