Credit Card Center Advertiser Disclosure†
12-28-2011 09:48 AM
Do any of you know of any circumstance where having a credit score of 800 or even 850 would save you money over if you had a credit score of 780?
I can’t find any source that says that there is any benefit (besides bragging rights) to having a score north of 780, but I’d really like to be sure. (In fact, most sites say there is no advantage to having a score above 760.)
12-28-2011 10:27 AM
Thank you, GregB; I appreciate that.
You mention normal loans. Are there also some sort of unusual loans you have in mind for which having a 800+ score would allow you to get a better rate than if you had a 760?
12-28-2011 10:54 AM
I was declined for the best rate on a HELOC with an EQ FICO of 787. It was from an investment firm and the rate was below prime. The 787 would have qualified me if I had much more money in my account with that firm. This was just one item in a list of 4-5 requirements, where you needed to meet a certain number off the list. In any case, it was not a normal loan because you needed to have more money in your account than you were trying to borrow.
In my business, I have seen numerous cases in priority banking where an 800+ FICO was required but so was $5M in deposits.
12-28-2011 11:31 AM
Thanks again, GregB!
It sounds like for me it probably won't help to have an ultra-high score.
The reason I posted is that I am currently renting an apartment but looking to buy a home in the near future. My credit score is currently 802. While that's nice, if I will qualify for the identical home loan regardless of whether I have an 802 or a 760, then I don't see any reason to get especially excited about my score.
On the contrary, I might be leaving some money on the table, so to speak. Here's what I mean.
I am a frequent reader of MyMoneyBlog, and the author there advocates a judicious strategy of applying for credit cards in order to take advantage of $500+ signup bonuses. Based on a lot of research I did yesterday, I think that given my current utilization ratio, average age of credit cards, etc. applying for one or more such cards would have a small, temporary, negative effect on my score.
If I already owned a home, then in seems to me that enduring a small, temporary, negative effect would almost certainly be worth $500 or more in credit card bonuses per application. But if applying for the cards lowered my score to say, 799 or 795 or 789, and if those lower scores ended up meaning that the rate on a home loan was even a tenth of a percentage point higher, then the money I earned today in credit card bonuses almost certainly wouldn’t offset the extra money I’d pay over time on the loan. But if I am going to get the exact same loan whether my credit score is 760, 780, 789, 795, 799, 802, or 850, then I don’t see any disadvantage *in my particular case* to periodically signing up for credit cards in order to take advantage of the bonuses they offer.)
Thanks again for your replies to my posts!
12-28-2011 11:44 AM
I don't know where there could be a sign up bonus on a CC of $500 but if you find one, let me know.
You should also make sure that you are looking at a real credit score, that is one that is used by a mortgage lender. The only one available to consumers that will match any one of the three scores used by a mortgage lender is the EQ FICO you get here. You can then match up the information on your EX and TU reports to make sure it is very similar so that the scores will be similar.
12-28-2011 12:33 PM
12-28-2011 12:33 PM - last edited on 12-29-2011 11:25 PM by Lel
Okay, good to know. Thanks!
The author at MyMoneyBlog keeps EDITED of credit cards offering the best bonuses.
Before jumping on that bandwagon, however tempting it may be, I realized that just because his strategy works for him, that doesn't necessarily mean that it will work for me or for others. For instance, he might have such a long average age of credit that getting new cards doesn't hurt him in a way it might hurt others. Over the long run, however, and especially once a person has a decently long average age of credit, then I think his strategy works for all of the reasons he discusses in this post: EDITED
My research yesterday showed me that many people pursue a perfect credit score as if that were the goal. But surely the goal (in this realm of life) it to save/make money, and a good credit score is only a means to that end. I want a high enough score that I always qualify for the absolute best rate on any loan I’ll ever take out, but once my score is good enough to consistently accomplish that goal, I then want to pursue these $500+ credit card bonuses even if so doing keeps me from ever having a perfect credit score.
EDIT NOTE: the cited blogs have links to commercial sites, plus they appear to be referral/ affiliate links, meaning that whenever they are clicked, someone makes some money. This violates the forums TOS, especially referring to spam, and thus they have been removed. It is especially interesting that these links were posted by someone brand new to the forums.