03-01-2014 12:08 PM
Hey Challengers! It's March 1st, which means it's time for our second monthly check-in thread. As a reminder, participation in these monthly check-ins is optional, but encouraged. The goal is to help keep you on track, so feel free to post your progress updates here.
How did the month of February treat your finances? Did you hit any potholes or speedbumps? Achieve some milestones, either small or mighty? Change your goals or add new ones?
Let us know how you're doing! What have been your biggest accomplishments and obstacles so far in the myFICO Fitness Challenge for 2014?
03-02-2014 09:56 AM
In general, I would give February a net neutral. Most of my progress was made in the emergency fund department, and I should continue to have solid results there. Due to the lateness of my post in the january thread I may have touched on this, but I have hit my INQ threshold for the year, and will actually exceed it by 1 when the FAFSA pulls for federal loans. In regard to this, I will likely postpone my application for the Skymiles card. Since I have until december, though, I can always assess the situation then.
Util is down to about 96%, which I will take as a small victory, and scores remain about even. Looking forward to more improvements this month.
Continued luck to everybody else!
03-02-2014 07:24 PM
I've been lurking FOREVER, and finally decided to register and speak up. I've learned a LOT from just lurking here, and look forward to continuing to learn. Hello everyone!
03-05-2014 01:08 PM
I wrote in the February Check-in thread and now we're in March! I actually had a lot of success so far this month. A few years back, things got so bad that I had to file Ch. 7 BK. And even after it, there are still a few accounts that still show there were in collections before I filed and a private Chase student loan that isn't going anywhere any time soon. So, in light of all that I thought it would be at least a good 4/5 years before I got anything good credit-wise. However, I got approved for a Credit One CC last June, and a CC at my Credit Union in October. I've been looking at the threads here and trying to keep my utilization down, and because of that on March 1st, I was approved for a Barclay's card for $1500! I was so happy because I applied for it last year around the same time as my Credit 1 CC and was denied, so to me that's like a small victory right there! Then the next day, while looking to buy a TV I was approved for $800 of Instant Credit to Amazon. I was so shocked and ecstatic. Thankfully, I just received word from score watch that my score went up to 630 from 611 last month and has not changed, even after inquiries from both of these companies back to back like that. I realize that was a bit risky, but things are actually looking up now.
I got the Amazon card because it said I could finance my purchase over 6 months for orders $150 or more, and 1 year for $600 or more. So, of course, I used almost my limit at around $715. However, I'm not sure if that was a wise move or not. Does anyone have any advice on financing items over the long term interest-free like that?
If not, I would really like some advice on refinancing a car as my current loan really has me over a barrel at like 19% interest. I tried refinancing with my Credit Union last year around October and they turned me down. Do you think my new score would improve my odds well enough to try again so soon? I wish I knew what my FICO was back then, but I don't. However, I think my Credit Union pulled my TU at the time, which was like 608. I don't know what it currently is, but from what I've seen before it's usually my highest score, and I think I only have my FICO for EQ right now. Thanks for any help guys, I REALLY LOVE this forum!
03-06-2014 09:46 AM
February was decent, got a bonus and now utilization down to around 60% (was at 84%). While it raised my scores, I'm concerned it's still too high to apply for a BT card. I also requested PC for my More to the IT card, so I'll have more benefits there. I also PC'd my BoA to their Better Balance Rewards card, which will be good in case I don't get approved for BT card right away. I requested lower interest rates, no luck on any for SPs and I didn't want any HPs. I have inquiries dropping this month, not ready to replace them! That was discouraging since I don't get many 'bursts of cash' I can throw towards my CCs.
My plan for March is to apply for a BT card. I want to do AMEX BCE, but VERY VERY nervous given my high util. Wondering if it's something I should attempt or go for a different BT card.....? I'm itching to app, haven't done anything in almost 2 years!
03-06-2014 09:55 AM
I'm still relatively new to the community, but have learned so much! I came across myfico in December 2013 and decided that my goal in 2014 is to fix my credit so I can buy a house, since now I truly believe that it's possible!
I do have 4 collection accounts that I still need to take care of, but I have 3 CC's that I'm minimally using and paying in full each month. 1 CC is a new secured card that I opened since I had virtually no credit after most went to collections, so from January to February my score went up quite a few points!
this month progress was a little slower and I had 1 hard inquiry. After that I decided to go back into the garden for quite some time until my situation improves.
My goal this month is to get the cash together to pay off 1 collection account, I may attempt a PFD. I'll keep you updated
03-06-2014 05:02 PM
I have paid off 1 CC and paid down 2 more. I really wanted to buy a town home, but was a little nervous about applying. I was not sure if my score would be good enough. I took the plunge and was approved. They should begin digging any day now. I received the loan papers to sign and return. I can't believe I was approved! Everything seems to be falling into place. Closing will be June/July.
03-07-2014 07:43 AM
Just joined myFICO today.
Here's my deal - I've had a pretty solid credit history for a long time, until very recently. I'm still trying to figure out how this occurred but we didn't pay 2 credit cards for about 4 months. The sad thing is, the balances were negligent (Discover $75 and Toys R US $58), I rarely use these cards and they are basically $0 balance.
Additionally, not knowing that it would impact my score - I kept high balances on 2 credit cards and a line of credit (Citi $8.2k, Chase $5.2k and Citi LOC $1.5k). I also have a Citi card that was closed with a balance remaining and I've been paying well above the minimum payments (3 times the minimum), for $3k. I had been trying to pay off the balances for the last 2 years - which also didn't appear to help much either. One card (Discover $20k) was closed after I paid off the entire balance ($12k). All of these issues have crashed myFICO score to 627. TU is 660, EQ is 659 and EX is 640.
I recently made a large payment to Citi for $4k, and Citi lowered my credit limit from $8.2k to $6k. I also paid off the Chase card ($5.2k) and the Citi line of credit ($1.5k)
I'm not sure how much it'll help - but the only credit card balances remaining are (Citi $4k and Citi $3k) - which I intend to pay off completely within the next month (can't wait!!! ). My credit limit currently sits at a measely $11k - truly amazing IMO. I'm also unsure if the creditors will continue to do balance chasing on me - I hope not.
The worst part? I have never owned a home and am committed to buying this summer (I have a family) - so this crisis has arrived at exactly at the wrong time.
03-08-2014 10:55 AM
Right now, I feel like I'm in a holding pattern. I'm in the garden letting my newest card age. Paying down debts, making progress. I've made some goodwill efforts, though I don't have much to do in regards to that.
Research. Hardcore research. Trying to find the right cards for me.
So this is me... checking in.
03-08-2014 02:26 PM
February was a good month. I've never checked in before, so it's kind of a new time for me. It took quite a while for me, back in November, to finally write down all the debt I had in one list. I stared in aww when I saw 22k in credit cards. So I vowed not to swipe one again, and I haven't (with the exception of my Amex I am using for daily spending just to get in their good graces). I got it down little by little, but February was a great month. Tax returns, raises, etc, all came together, and my debt is down to 12.6K, and my util is at 36.5%.
This month, Amex raised my limit automatically, so I'd say that's a win. It's just tough getting that util down. I have it all mapped out though, and I am set to be debt free by November 14!