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BestFicol
Posts: 2
Registered: ‎02-08-2012
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Re: How many CCs is considered Optimal for FICO Scoring?

Something funny and interesting that I can share with you that I  learned over the last 10 years on how many cards or how much credit one should or could obtain. A neighbor I worked for part-time a number of years back has 3 or 4 credit cards with limits of $20,000 and $30,000 dollars each! Can you imagine? She's 60 some years old and a moderately working class woman. They are offering her more of these type credit cards by different companies all the time. 

 

She doesn't use all that credit limit amount, not generally more than around half. I guess over the years she has had different limits, and within those limits used around half or a little over 1/2, & then worked real hard to pay it all back. Then the credit limits have gone up, and she's done this over and over the same way.

 

She always pays more than is the minimum payment usually by at least $100 extra each month and they love her. Her score is excellent and she is a desired customer. So how much or how many credit cards or limits you have is probably a lot to do with what you are comfortable with, your age and credit worthiness you've proven, and what number of cards you are actually able to wisely use and responsibily manage to pay on time, etc.

 

When she went on a long vacation and I had to handle the bills, it was confounding to me, and a learning experience to figure out about. I didn't know some types of charges go towards credit on some cards like American Express and some of the charges you make, like if they are under $100 or $150 will all be like cash due charges and are due in full within 25 days plus the minimum payment on the previous  balance and any new purchases over $100 or $150 (whatever your set limit is). So you could easily come up with an $800 payment in any given month if you made 6 or 7 purchases under $100 and then had a medium high balance with a minimum due on that also.

 

Rules and terms you have to learn with each different card type take figuring out also. Paying it back and keeping up with this much bills of more than a couple of cards which come due at different times and such is time consuming too, but to her it's 2nd nature and she never runs into a problem managing it all wonderfully.

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Pat51
Posts: 1
Registered: ‎08-10-2012
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Re: How many CCs is considered Optimal for FICO Scoring?

I have 11 cards. Cards like Macy's, bloomingdale, jc pennys and other stores.  When I pay them off should I close them? Also when I pay off credits cards should I close them?

Frequent Contributor
Roarmeister
Posts: 334
Registered: ‎04-21-2012
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Re: How many CCs is considered Optimal for FICO Scoring?

[ Edited ]

I've been thoroughly enjoying this thread and walking through the last 4.5 years of posts!  It looks like it has been revived several times and I've seen a number of comments that I would have liked to +1 or voted up!

 

My opinion is that either 3 or 5 cards is likely to be optimal.  If you are cycling payments through your cards and have either one card being used in any particular month then with 3 open cards you are using less than 1/2 of you accounts.  If you use 2 out of 5 cards, again you are using less than 1/2 of your accounts.  I read somewhere on another board and I think I've also read it here that using more than 50% of your revolving credit accounts is a negative.

 

I had 3 cards, $41k CL, until last week.  I was looking for a reward card and couldn't decide between 2 of the best choices -- so I choose BOTH.  :smileyvery-happy:

 

I was approved on both cards so now I have 5, $71k CL.  I am waiting for my quarterly credit score to be issued in the next few days.  I was at 791.  Any takers as to the direction of my score will be UP or DOWN?  I expect negative points for the HPs, lowering the AAA and for the newness of accounts but positive points for the additional credit and lowering my utilization to below 10% ($7k on the low interest card - made some recent large purchases and took a nice vacation!)

 

Do I need more cards?  NO.  Do I want more cards?  NO.  Will more cards help my score?  Not very likely or at least not much.  Will I keep all the cards in my wallet at the same time?  No way Hosea!  Can I handle more cards?  Probably not, rotating 5 cards will be challenging enough.  Other than the 1 card currently carrying a balance, I usually pay my accounts 2x a month to keep my utilization low or non existent.  Do I have the cards I want?  YEP!

 

AMEX_PlatinumBMOWorldMCCapOnePlatinumMBNA_Platinum+ScotiaMomentum
____$25k_______$20k_______$20k_______$25k_______$25k____
Starting Score: 676 Feb 2008; Current Score: 791 EQ; 824 CA, Dec. 2014; TU 814, Oct. 2014; Goal Score: 800 by end of year Oldest Account reported by EQ: 12 years; EQ AAoA: 5.8 years; EQ Credit Utilization: 2.3%
Senior Contributor
smallfry
Posts: 4,831
Registered: ‎04-20-2007
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Re: How many CCs is considered Optimal for FICO Scoring?

3 or 5 is what I think is right too unless you want to take advantage of a balance transfer offer. Then you might want 6 or even 7. That is if you want to use and show balances on 2 cards per month. You certainly do not need 10 or 20 like some people have. At this point if I wasn't getting a free Experian score from PSECU I would close that card. If I didn't plan on someday getting a mortgage loan from Penfed I would close my no rewards Visa card that they gave me. At any rate 3 is all you need to get the highest score if that is your end game. 

Valued Member
OptimalFICO
Posts: 203
Registered: ‎07-05-2009
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Re: How many CCs is considered Optimal for FICO Scoring?

Just to keep things accurate, per HaulingtheScoreUp:

 

The question was, "How many CCs is considered Optimal for FICO Scoring" not what people prefer or think is the best number...

 

For FICO scoring purposes, three (3) is to be the magic number to optimize FICO scores.

Frequent Contributor
Kratos-TM
Posts: 429
Registered: ‎05-23-2013
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Re: How many CCs is considered Optimal for FICO Scoring?

[ Edited ]

OptimalFICO wrote:

Just to keep things accurate, per HaulingtheScoreUp:

 

The question was, "How many CCs is considered Optimal for FICO Scoring" not what people prefer or think is the best number...

 

For FICO scoring purposes, three (3) is to be the magic number to optimize FICO scores.



Thank you. This thread got carried away with a ton of pages of what people think is best "personally." The original question was for FICO scoring.

 

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