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Registered: ‎09-12-2007
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Number of cards carrying balance, even a small one effect on score?

I have 13 open accounts.  3 are high util, the rest have anywhere from $50-200 on them none of which are higher than 10% util.  I have some cash I was going to use to pay down one of the high util cards but would I be better off score wise to clean up all the small ones?
 
Thanks!
 
4/11/08  EQ 602, EX 635, TU 629
5/13/08  EQ 714, EX 717, TU 694
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Re: Number of cards carrying balance, even a small one effect on score?

See if you get a score bump if you let the cards you let report a balance show less than 4% utilization instead of 9-10.
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Re: Number of cards carrying balance, even a small one effect on score?


Dgimple wrote:

I have 13 open accounts. 3 are high util, the rest have anywhere from $50-200 on them none of which are higher than 10% util. I have some cash I was going to use to pay down one of the high util cards but would I be better off score wise to clean up all the small ones?
Thanks!

4/11/08 EQ 602, EX 635, TU 629
5/13/08 EQ 714, EX 717, TU 694



I think what you're asking is whether you'd do better to pay down the high util cards some more, or to zero out some of the little ones, right?

I suppose it depends on how high "high" is. Are any of them in the maxed-out category (85% and over)? Are any of them over 50%?

My gut feeling is that lowering total util comes first. I don't know if I've seen any posts saying that a member got a negative for "too many accounts with balances" and another for "and your util is crazy high, too." But this is an interesting question; I had never thought about this before!

What is your overall util, and what are the utils on the 3 high cards? And as PP mentioned, the goal is not 10%, it's under 10%, as in 1-9%. :smileywink:
* 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: Number of cards carrying balance, even a small one effect on score?

All I have both read on this subject and seen from my personal experience is that of the three major util factors (i..e.., overall %util, indiv card % utils, and number of cards with balances), the most important are the first two.  I would pay down % util on the higher util cards before I would concentrate on how many cards contain balances..
And all of that is just from a FICO perspective..  From a financial perspective, the higher balance cards are costing you higher actual monthly interest, and beg attention.  Debt planning is not the same as FICO planning.  If you are not planning to apply for new debt in the immediate future, then FICO planning takes the back seat, IMHO.
 
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Re: Number of cards carrying balance, even a small one effect on score?

For my credit profile, it seems I am aloud to carry a balance on only one credit card.  I have an autoloan and a mortgage as well.  You need to pay all all the card except one and get that balance below 10%.
 
Since I seem to get more of a hit for util then # of CCCs reporting a balance, I would go after the big balance first, especialy if you can get it below 10%.
 
I know most people say to attack the smallest balances first, but you could get a side benefit of getting an auto CLI if you pay down the balance on that CC.
 
Another possile option would be to BT to one card and then atatck that card.  Thats what I did.  Yes there may be interest involved but if you pay the balance off in say a year or less and you need your scores to go up to buy say a car or home, then that might be they way to go even with the interest payment.
 
All of this depends on what your credit goal is.  I would not incur interest charges just to raise my credit score unless I was intending to go after a car or home loan.  On the other side I would take the score hit  to do a BT to 0% on  new CC if I  was paying 20% interest on several cards that had a high balance and I wasnt going after a new loan.
 
 
11/28/2014 FICO: EQ: 796 EX:788 TU:803
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Re: Number of cards carrying balance, even a small one effect on score?


RobertEG wrote:
All I have both read on this subject and seen from my personal experience is that of the three major util factors (i..e.., overall %util, indiv card % utils, and number of cards with balances), the most important are the first two. I would pay down % util on the higher util cards before I would concentrate on how many cards contain balances..


I agree. Nice summary.
* 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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