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New Contributor
Posts: 62
Registered: ‎09-12-2007
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Penalized for too many accounts even with small balances?

I currently have 13 cards w/ balances.  Three with high util and the rest with anywhere from $50-$200 which would represent less than 10% util on those.  Would it be wise (ie help my score) to pay off all the small balance cards so I would reduce the total number of cards w/ balances?
 
4/11/08  EQ 602, EX 635, TU 629
5/13/08
Senior Contributor
Posts: 4,831
Registered: ‎04-20-2007
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Re: Penalized for too many accounts even with small balances?

Absolutely. Pay the cards down to 0 so that you have no more than 40% of your revolving lines reporting a balance every month. Rotate the cards. I made every card cut the statement within 2-3 days of each other so it was easy to track and pay down/off every month.
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Registered: ‎03-19-2007
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Re: Penalized for too many accounts even with small balances?

Dgimple, I would not offer an "absolutely" opinion.  In my experience, % util on indiv cards, and overall %util, counts more in FICO scoring than the number of cards with balances, and furthermore, the cards carrying higher balances are costing you a good chuck of interest, unless they are under an low intro interest rate.  I would probably focus on paying down the higher balance cards first, rather than focusing on the lower balance cards simply to keep the total number of cards reporting any balance at zero.
 
Senior Contributor
Posts: 3,071
Registered: ‎05-17-2007
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Re: Penalized for too many accounts even with small balances?

I got dinged -18 points when I had more than 4 accounts with balances. Score Watch said Too many balances, -18 point change. This included all installments as well combined. For some it is more than 50% of total open accounts reporting a balance. I don't know where your too many is but you would need to reduce to a few balances to see. It depending on your score, if low you might not be hit as hard as I am. Maybe you will only be hit for -9 points or something. Just guessing. I am hit for -18 every time.

On the other hand I keep activity and balances on almost every account that I have to keep generating history. So my score is -18 points right now. When I need my score higher I just pay off the balances a head of time and I get +18 instantly when it reports.
If we never set higher goals we would never get as far.
sol, credit 101, acr, abbreviations, calc
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Registered: ‎04-01-2007
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Re: Penalized for too many accounts even with small balances?



ilovepizza wrote:
I got dinged -18 points when I had more than 4 accounts with balances. Score Watch said Too many balances, -18 point change. This included all installments as well combined. For some it is more than 50% of total open accounts reporting a balance. I don't know where your too many is but you would need to reduce to a few balances to see. It depending on your score, if low you might not be hit as hard as I am. Maybe you will only be hit for -9 points or something. Just guessing. I am hit for -18 every time.


pizza, what was your util when you got this? My question is if this ding only comes into play after total and individual util are low.

My util was under 1 or 2% when I got this comment, but that's generally where my util was anyway, so I can't extrpolate from that.
* 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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Posts: 62
Registered: ‎09-12-2007
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Re: Penalized for too many accounts even with small balances?

I don't know why my 5/13 scores didn't show up for comparison sake.
 
5/13/08  EQ 714, EX 717, TU 694
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Re: Penalized for too many accounts even with small balances?



Dgimple wrote:
I don't know why my 5/13 scores didn't show up for comparison sake.
5/13/08 EQ 714, EX 717, TU 694



Pay everything under 10% and get no more than 5 or 6 reporting a balance and I would be surprised if your scores weren't 740-750 next pull.
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Posts: 3,071
Registered: ‎05-17-2007
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Re: Penalized for too many accounts even with small balances?



haulingthescoreup wrote:
pizza, what was your util when you got this? My question is if this ding only comes into play after total and individual util are low.

My util was under 1 or 2% when I got this comment, but that's generally where my util was anyway, so I can't extrpolate from that.


UTL was not a factor with my specific loss of -18 points for too many balances. Same when I was maxed out and same when each account reported a $1.00 with UTL less than 0.01%. It was an action that took points off my score regardless of other factors. :smileyhappy: My report has no negs right now so the score finds ways to ding me for the smallest things.
If we never set higher goals we would never get as far.
sol, credit 101, acr, abbreviations, calc
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Re: Penalized for too many accounts even with small balances?


ilovepizza wrote:

haulingthescoreup wrote:
pizza, what was your util when you got this? My question is if this ding only comes into play after total and individual util are low.

My util was under 1 or 2% when I got this comment, but that's generally where my util was anyway, so I can't extrpolate from that.

UTL was not a factor with my specific loss of -18 points for too many balances. Same when I was maxed out and same when each account reported a $1.00 with UTL less than 0.01%. It was an action that took points off my score regardless of other factors. :smileyhappy: My report has no negs right now so the score finds ways to ding me for the smallest things.


Interesting, thanks! Who knows, maybe one day all my lates will fall off, and I will have this problem, too! :smileywink:

I haven't gotten the too-many-accounts-with-balances message since I added all the new accounts. I still ride them pretty mercilessly by keeping almost everything PIF'd, but it's nice to have some wiggle room.
* 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
Valued Member
Posts: 32
Registered: ‎07-29-2007
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Re: Penalized for too many accounts even with small balances?

Dgimple,,
if you don't mind me asking, how did you get your score to increase almost 80 to 90 points in a month?
 
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