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Re: ABSOLUTE FICO INSANITY Re: Does an installment loan hurt my score?

[ Edited ]

tmacar wrote:
I just found another page, "Understanding Your FICO Score", where they "explain" what is hurting me. On the current report, they say I'm being hurt because I have a consumer finance account. THAT makes no sense, because I have no new consumer finance accounts, this was NEVER mentioned as a problem before (including May 5), and they say I have 4 consumer finance accounts, which I don't. I have, and have had since the beginning of 2007, 3, one of which is an auto loan. Do they count it as a consumer finance loan if it's for an auto? I checked, it does say Auto Loan on the listing.

Could they somehow be counting the Credit Union loan as a consumer finance loan?

Here's what they list as problems with my score at 602:

Heavy Use of Revolving Credit, 57% - This was 83% on March 1, at 623, and 76% on Mayy 5, at 658

Recently Opened a New Account, the $2,500 credit Union Loan last month, but 56 points??? This category is not on the Nar 1, 623 point report, but is on the May 5, 658 point, report, saying 10 months ago. I guess you get this if you opened ANYTHING in the last year.

Short Credit History, 9yrs 9 mos, avg age 3 yrs - Mar 1 (623) 9yrs 7 mos, same avg age and May 5 (658) Same As Today

Consumer Finance Account, 4 accounts - NOT, at MOST 3, one of those an auto loan, and this was never mentioned before.

And that's it. However, except for the new account and Consumer Finance thing, which is wrong anyway, Mar. 1 (623) had the same categories, with worse specific numbers, PLUS:

A Serious Delinquency AND a Collection, 3 accounts with 60+ day lates and 1 collection

AND Recently Been Looking For Credit, 6 inquiries.

And except for the new account and the incorrect Consumer Finance thing, May 5 (658) had:

Heavy use, but with a 76% instead of the 602 report's 56%

Short Credit History, identical to the 602 report's

Recently Been Looking For Credit, 5 inquiries (This one not on the 602 report at all)

Recently Opened a New Account, 10 months ago - They swap the 10 months ago one for the credit union one on the 602 report

All in all, it seems like the negatives they list are as bad on the May 5 (658) report and are even worse on the Mar 1 (623) than they are open the new May 10 (602) report, except that consumer finance entry which is not even accurate. Could THAT be costing me 56 points?


OK, I think you have hit a perfect storm of scoring. You say that on the older report, it mentioned a serious delinquency and a collection. Are those now gone? If so, you're in a new score bucket. Once the last collection and/or last serious delinq goes, you get in a new scoring group where you're compared with those with cleaner credit, so you're going to look a bit stinky for a while. Stuff that was considered semi-minor before, like CFL's, is now counted, and if you're in a new bucket, 57% util might look as bad or worse than the 70's and 80's in a previous bucket.

If this happened, that would explain why you're getting scolded for things that didn't used to be problems before (CFL's), high util, even if it's lower than before, inqs, and a new account. Have you had a major improvement in your credit picture since before, other than the lowered util, which hasn't fully shown up yet? Or do you currently have any disputes filed on accounts that have major derogs?

Something drastic must have happened to make things count so differently now. And it could very well be positive things, like losing a collection, that has temporarily shaken up your credit profile. As a rule of thumb, if you suddenly start getting brand new comments --more than one or two --on screen 2 scolding you (or praising you) for things that were never mentioned before, this is an indication that you have been re-assigned to a new credit peer group, or score bucket.

I'm glad you found screen 2! (Understanding your credit.) It's the most useful page on there, IMO. I think what you listed before was from the first page, where they have the bars on the right with "bad", "not good", "good", and so forth, but it's pretty vague. Screen 2 has the meat.

How have the positives changed on screen 2 from the previous two reports to this one?


edit to add: Since you pulled your scores before all your payments updated, you might have gotten a surprise peek at your credit profile change in process, sort of like looking backstage when the actors are quickly changing clothes, and everything looks pretty chaotic. This sort of things probably goes on with our scores all the time, but we don't necessarily pull them when everything is playing fruit-basket-turnover like your reports were when you pulled.

Once all the new balances post, with the much lower util, your score should be a whole lot better. Do you know by what date everything should have updated, or do you have TrueCredit or another monitoring service that will show when everyone has all your new balances?

I'd be chewing my nails off waiting for everything to finally hit!

Message Edited by haulingthescoreup on 05-13-2008 04:07 AM
* Credit is a wonderful servant, but a terrible master. * Who's the boss --you or your credit?
FICO's: EQ 781 - TU 793 - EX 779 (from PSECU) - Done credit hunting; having fun with credit gardening. - EQ 590 on 5/14/2007
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Re: Does an installment loan hurt my score?

Smallfry, that is probably true,  I dont think the various versions of FICO that are being sold to and used by the CRAs are drastically different, but, hey, only FaiIsaac can tell us that.  FairIsaac has told us that the models are not the same, but not how un-same they are!  So I can only listen to the omnipotent FICO Creator.
My only pont was to quash the flat rumor that FICO sells only one score model, and that identical CRs with the three CRAs should produce identical scores, and if they dont, then there are some shannigans going on over at FairIsaac FICO has been above board in stating that the models they sell are not the same for any of their customers.
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Re: Does an installment loan hurt my score?

Thanks. Wasn't saying I didn't believe it, just wanted navigation instructions so I could find it and have it handy if I ever need it for something.
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Re: ABSOLUTE FICO INSANITY Re: Does an installment loan hurt my score?

I have 3 Equifax reports on the FICO site. March 1 (623), May 5 (658), and May 12 (605). May 12 is identical to Equifax on May 9 when I lost 56 points and went to 602, except that 3 of my new balances ($81 to $29, $239 to $104, and $293 to $77) had posted by the 12th, which gained me 3 points back.

Unfortunately, my May 9 report was pulled directly from Equifax, so it doesn't have all the extra information to compare. But since the May 12 at MYFICO is identical to the May 9 at Equifax except for 3 balance drops and 3 added points, I'm treating the May 12 as if it is a May 9, 602 point, report for purposes of comparing the extra information stuff. The only thing that could be different on it is the Amount of Debt, and that has just stayed "Not Good" all through this whole mess. At least I know that will change when all the new balances get posted, whenever that is.

And I have MYFICO Scorewatch, which is SUPPOSED to email me if my score changes, but it went from 602 to 605 yesterday, and I still don't have an email from them. I also have Equifax, which supposedly emails me when anything changes on the report, but it isn't set up to notify me about balance decreases, just increases.

On March 1, at 623, I had the following:

Payment History: NOT GOOD
Amount of Debt: NOT GOOD
Length of Credit History: GOOD
Amount of New Credit: NOT GOOD

Credit At A Glance had Red Flags for:
Late Payments (6)
Accounts With Balances (13)
Accounts Opened In Past Year (6)
Collections (1)

Understanding Your Score had (bad):
A Collection and a Serious Delinquency (1 Coll, 3 Accts w/60+ day lates)
Heavy Use Of Revolving Credit (83%)
Short Credit History (9 yrs 7 mos, avg. age 3 yrs)
Recently Looking For Credit (6 inquiries)
and(good):
Recently Paying Bills On Time (Last late 5 yrs 11 mos ago)
Many Accounts In Good Standing (13)

On May 6, at 658, I had the following:

Payment History: GREAT
Amount of Debt: NOT GOOD
Length of Credit History: GOOD
Amount of New Credit: GOOD

Credit At A Glance had Red Flags For:
Accounts With Balances (13)

Understanding Your Score had (bad):
Heavy Use of Revolving Credit (76%)
Short Credit History (9 yrs 9 mos, avg. age 3 yrs)
Recently Looking For Credit (5 inquiries)
Recently Opened a New Account (10 mos ago) [where was this one on Mar 1?]
and (good):
You Have Missed No Payments On Your Credit Accounts
You've Been Careful In How Many Credit Accounts You've Recently Opened [HOW does this square with Recently Opened One being negative?]

On May 9, at 602, I had the following:
[Really May 12, but reports are identical except 3 bal. drops and gained 3 points]

Payment History: GREAT
Amount of Debt: NOT GOOD
Length of Credit History: GOOD
Amount of New Debt: NOT GOOD

Credit At a Glance had Red Flags For:
Accounts With Balances (14)
[If New Debt is NOT GOOD, why no red flag on Accounts Opened In Past Year (2)]

Understanding Your Score had (bad):
Heavy Use of Revolving Credit (57%)
Recently Opened a New Account (1 month ago)
Short Credit History (9 yrs 9 mos, avg. age 3 yrs)
Consumer Finance Account on Report (4 Acct's)[This hasn't changed since Dec. '06, AND I don't have 4, only 3, and one is an Auto Loan - does that still count as a CFL? - AND one of them was paid odd last month, just hasn't reported yet]
And (good):
No Missed Payments on Your Credit Accounts

That's the whole picture. What's STRANGEST is that all the info on March 1 is worse than May 9, but Mar 1 was 623 and May 9 was 602.

The MYFICO simulator now says I will only go to 655 to 695 after the balance changes all post, instead of the 728 to 758 it said before I lost 56 points. But I was just thinking, the simulator doesn't know that I will also have 3 revolving accounts with zero balances, or that one of my installment loans, a CFL at that, will be paid off and closed. Are those 2 things likely to help me very much above what the simulator predicted? I need to break 720 by May 29 to not lose out on a great deal on a new vehicle, and now I doubt I'll make it.
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Re: ABSOLUTE FICO INSANITY Re: Does an installment loan hurt my score?

I won't quote your post, LOL, or I'll crash the servers! :smileyvery-happy:

But that's it, you lost a collection AND three serious derogs, and you're in a whole new score bucket, with people with mostly clean reports! So you're penalized on your util (which is in the process of changing), and your short average history with new accounts being added relatively recently. I noticed that you lost the neg on the May 6 report for inqs, and it was replaced with the negative for the CFL's. It's possible that your new loan is coded as a CFL, and added to the ones that you already had, or that EQ thinks that you had, there are now enough to make it post as a negative. I have a paid CFL, but just one, and it's never appeared as a negative, probably because my negs drone on about my lates.

I think that the low util, when it finally posts, is going to be huge for you, but I don't know that it's going to be huge enough. But when it does post, your only negatives will be a relatively short average history of 3 years X months, recent new inqs and accounts, and the CFL's, and if one or two of those can be recoded properly, that one might drop off, too. Doubtless something else will pop up at that point, but really, your reports will look better than mine, since you've had clean history for 5 years whatever months. I hate it if you don't hit 720 in time, but really, your scores should start taking off within months, if you can stop app'ing for a while.

You have just completely rewritten your credit, getting rid of a collection, 3 serious derogs, and very high util. That's fantastic work!
* Credit is a wonderful servant, but a terrible master. * Who's the boss --you or your credit?
FICO's: EQ 781 - TU 793 - EX 779 (from PSECU) - Done credit hunting; having fun with credit gardening. - EQ 590 on 5/14/2007
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Auto loan,

Boy, am I DUMB!!

I don't even know how many loans I have.

I just got off the phone with FICO. I was asking, first, why if amount of new credit was NOT GOOD, was there no red flag on Accounts Opened in the Past Year? I told them that was probably minor, but it's an inconsistency I'd like to have explained, and that the main problem was that I was being told I have 4 CFLs, when I only have 3.

The lady was looking through the list of accounts trying to ID the 4 CFLs, and I asked if it would help is I pointed out the 3 that WERE CFLs. She said yes, so I went down the list and told her which were CFLs. And during the process I realized I didn't have 3, I only have 2!! I used to have a loan with one CF company, and a signature loan and an auto loan with another CF company. But I paid off that signature loan over a year ago, so I only have the 2 CFLs. And one of those was paid off about 4 weeks ago, I'm just waiting for it to report. So I REALLY only have 1, the Auto Loan.

And yes, I do think they are identifying my loan from the credit union as a CFL. Plus, to come up with 4, they must also be counting one of the old closed CFL's that is on my report, perhaps the one I paid off a year and 3 or 4 months ago, since that's the most recently closed one. I don't see HOW they could be making THAT mistake, though, because the loan has a zero balance showing. As does every single other non-credit card account they list, except the CFL auto loan, the CFL I recently paid off, and the new loan from the credit union.

With only 3 loans showing any balance, I don't see how the heck they came up with 4 CFLs, even if they are mis-identifying the credit union loan.

Bottom line, right now the simulator says I'll go to between 655 and 695 after the balance changes post.

However, in adddition to going from 81% to 15% on revolving, when it all gets straightened out I'll also have 3 revolving accounts with zero balances, I'll have one more paid off 2 year loan, and I'll go from 4 CFLs to only 1 CFL. And the simulator wasn't considering any of those things.

With the simulator saying the balance changes alone will take me to 655 - 695, do you think there's much of a chance that the other changes will let me get over 720?
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Re: ABSOLUTE FICO INSANITY Re: Does an installment loan hurt my score?

Oh, by the way. I don't REALLY have a late 5 yrs and 11 mos. ago. That's an account where the Date of Last Payment was August 2001, with the Date of Delinquency September 2001. What happened was that for some weird reason they listed Date of Last Payment as being when they sent it to collection, in 2002. I've got a dispute in, trying to get that fixed.
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Re: ABSOLUTE FICO INSANITY Re: Does an installment loan hurt my score?


tmacar wrote:
Oh, by the way. I don't REALLY have a late 5 yrs and 11 mos. ago. That's an account where the Date of Last Payment was August 2001, with the Date of Delinquency September 2001. What happened was that for some weird reason they listed Date of Last Payment as being when they sent it to collection, in 2002. I've got a dispute in, trying to get that fixed.


OK, there's another probable contribution to your score drop: disputed accounts, except for public records and collection agency accounts, are removed from scoring during the dispute process. Since this one is obviously old, having it held out from scoring has temporarily hurt your average history. It's not uncommon for old accounts to be a net positive for your scores, even with a negative on them.

Back to the CFL's: they count whether they're open or paid off. :smileymad: Again, in most cases they help more in the overall history category than they hurt in the anti-CFL category. If your current loan is from a CU, though, I would think that it should be coded as an installment loan, plain and simple, rather than a CFL. DH's reports are littered with signature loans from our local credit union, but I know for a fact that they are not considered CFL's. All three of his reports have 0 negative factors, which annoys me deeply. I copy/pasted my long-term goal (see my siggy) from one of his FICO reports.
* Credit is a wonderful servant, but a terrible master. * Who's the boss --you or your credit?
FICO's: EQ 781 - TU 793 - EX 779 (from PSECU) - Done credit hunting; having fun with credit gardening. - EQ 590 on 5/14/2007
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Re: ABSOLUTE FICO INSANITY Re: Does an installment loan hurt my score?

Sheesh maybe I AM screwed on CFLs, if they count forever. Up until this credit union loan, any installment loan I ever had was from a CF company.

But I just don't think that's what's happening. If they were counting all the CFLs on my record, I'd have at least 7, possibly 8. I had an auto loan from some outfit called Westlake Financial Services, I'm not absolutely certain they're a CF company, but I'm 85% sure they are.

Also, they haven't annotated any of the accounts as being in dispute, and since the balance argument covers every single current account I have except the Credit Union and the CF company auto loan, if they were all pulled from scoring I don't think I'd probably have even 602!

Any feeling at all for how much more (above what the simulator says for the pay downs), I'm likely to see for 3 revolving accounts with zero balances and a CFL paid off, in case I'm stuck with 4 CFLs?
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Re: ABSOLUTE FICO INSANITY Re: Does an installment loan hurt my score? NOW EQUIFAX LYING

Haulingthescoreup:

This may belong in some different thread, but I'm hoping for am answer from you. As moderator, I'm hoping you'll know about something like this.

You'll recall I sent EQ and EX (Experian) letters trying to get my scores updated as soon as possible. I included printouts of current account info for each account, taken from the computer. I specifically stated that if the documents were not enough for them to go ahead and change the scores, I did not want the accounts put in dispute, and that I was NOT disputing the accounts themselves or any of the information in them except for the specific balance. I also said that if a creditor(s) had already updated the balance(s) by the time EQ or EX got the letter, they should take no action regarding the account(s).

Talking to EQ yesterday, the guy mentioned that GEMB/Walmart is in the process of being deleted. What???? They just got the letter on the 8th. Even if they ignored my instructions and started disputes (exactly what they DID do, of course), there wasn't enough time for a deletion due to a creditor not responding to a dispute. The guy said Walmart DID respond, responded that the account should be deleted. Arguing with him got nowhere, of course.

Called Walmart credit dpt., asked them to put account back on report. Walmart said they have NEVER been in contact with EQ, other than normal once monthly updates, about anything, never received a dispute, and cer4tainly never told EQ to delete the account.

The EQ guy had also told me that Applied Bank had ALREADY been deleted, again due to creditor's response to the dispute saying to delete the account. I called Applied.

Applied informed me they had just received the dispute THAT DAY (On the 13th - how could they have already told EQ, a couple days prior, to delete it?), and had responded to it, verifying that all acc't info was correct, except the balance, which was Zero as I had claimed.

EQ claimed that they ignored my instructions, and initiated disputes, because if they're told of a balance discrepancy they are REQUIRED by law to start a formal dispute. They also said they cannot legally stop a dispute just because I, who "started" it, withdraw my disagreement and want the dispute stopped. Are these two things true?

On top of this, they are lying!!!! They are deleting perfectly good accounts from my report, based on creditor instructions that they have never actually received. What can I do?
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