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Moderator Emeritus
llecs
Posts: 32,869
Registered: ‎08-04-2007
0

Re: Score impact of going from 89% util to <10%

With all the updates in, and with utilization at 3% or less, here's my final 2 cents on FICO score changes from a 80% + change in utilization.

 

TU:

 

TU FICO increased from 667 to 758 by a total of 91 points. My initial score prediction was 760, so being 2 points off wasn't too shabby. In the past, my general rule of thumb, and certainly not official, was 10 points returned for every 10% dropped in util, assuming you get near 0% and assuming the mix of credit is OK, with most of those points appearing around 30% or less mark. So, I started with 89%. My goal was 0%, so I was guessing 90 points and rounded to 760 for the guess. As you can clearly see, most of those points did appear below the 30% mark.

 

Some notables -

 

1) $0 balances does play into scoring by quite a bit. That's evident on the Credit At-A-Glance page when you can get flagged for having too many TLs report a non-$0 balance. When my util dropped from 89% to 86%, as you can see, there was a 15 point gain. I can't see any way that lowering util by 3% while in the 80% range would result in any score change. But reducing $0 balances by 2 helped in that increase.

 

2) Reducing utilization by large amounts while keeping a high util doesn't result in much of a gain. As an example, I reducted TU from 74% to 47% and that resulted in only 8 points gained. However, going from 47% to 27% resulted in a 33 point spike.

 

3) Reducing util from 10% to 3% resulted in a 23 point gain. I would have guessed 10-15 points tops, but volumes can be said as to why util below 10% is important. In fact, while I was happy with any gains, I wasn't expecting to hit my goal and figured that I'd be stuck with a lower score. That last pull was a pleasant surprise.

 

EQ:

 

EQ increased from 652 to 777, by 125 points, after paying down revolving utilization from 86% to less than 1% (actually by 0.2% but FICO rounds up). My goal was to hit 750 and surpassed that and my "rule of thumb" was blown out of the water. I knew EQ responded a little bit better to utilization, but was still guessing a 90 point gain and rounded up by 8 more to guess 750.

 

Notables -

 

1) EQ didn't respond to $0 balances like I thought it would. As you can see, I went from 11 w/ balances to 9 w/ balances, with a 4% drop in util, and that only netted 7 points.

 

2) Like with TU, the biggest gain came when it hit below 30%. 44 points were gained after going from 40% to 14%. However, unlike TU, going from 14% to 1% only resulted in 11 points, and going from 9% to 1% only resulted in 3 points.

 

3) The biggest surprise was the overall 125 point gain.

 

I goofed in allowing the balances get so high. I'm not going to do that again. This was fun tracking and certainly will change my advice to others in the future. As stated before, these resulted will vary from person to person based on the scoring bucket, mix of credit, and so forth.

 

Moderator Emeritus
llecs
Posts: 32,869
Registered: ‎08-04-2007
0

Re: Score impact of going from 89% util to <10%


my-own-fico wrote:

 


llecs wrote:

Finished EQ today! TU should update by tomorrow and I'll give a play-by-play analysis tomorrow evening, assuming Junny does update on TU by then.


 

Looking forward to it!

 


All the numbers are in and the first post is fully updated.

Valued Contributor
my-own-fico
Posts: 1,299
Registered: ‎01-05-2010
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Re: Score impact of going from 89% util to <10%

llecs, congratulations on this huge day for you!

 

Are you living within your means?
Regular Contributor
jbee
Posts: 223
Registered: ‎03-08-2010
0

Re: Score impact of going from 89% util to <10%

Awesome Llecs!!!  That's amazing that your score rose that much, wow!!!

 

I do have a question, you said in your earlier post that you don't think you would get much points going from a high to low utilization.  I'm at around 50% total and was planning to take it down under 9% this month, but now I'm wondering if this would be a mistake.  My numbers are below.

 

CC1: 425/1500cl

CC2: 370/750cl

CC3: 1280/1500cl

CC4: 0/400cl

 

I was going to pay the first two off and pay CC3 down to around $100.  I was thinking this would give me a huge increase, please help!

 

Thanks


3/1/10: TU: 615, EQ: 640, EX: ???
6/8/10 (LO pulled): TU: 704, EQ: 689, EX: 694
Goal Score by Oct. 1: TU: 750, EQ: 750, EX: 750

Take the FICO Fitness Challenge
Moderator Emeritus
llecs
Posts: 32,869
Registered: ‎08-04-2007
0

Re: Score impact of going from 89% util to <10%


jbee wrote:

Awesome Llecs!!!  That's amazing that your score rose that much, wow!!!

 

I do have a question, you said in your earlier post that you don't think you would get much points going from a high to low utilization.  I'm at around 50% total and was planning to take it down under 9% this month, but now I'm wondering if this would be a mistake.  My numbers are below.

 

CC1: 425/1500cl

CC2: 370/750cl

CC3: 1280/1500cl

CC4: 0/400cl

 

I was going to pay the first two off and pay CC3 down to around $100.  I was thinking this would give me a huge increase, please help!

 

Thanks


Paying down debt is never a mistake!

 

You'd see some great gains, IMO, so as long as the CCs you mentioned are all open. If I had to guess, I'd guess 50+ on both EQ and TU.

Regular Contributor
jbee
Posts: 223
Registered: ‎03-08-2010
0

Re: Score impact of going from 89% util to <10%

Thanks Llecs!  Yes, they are all open.  I'm excited to see what it will be, but it won't be until the end of the month, because that's when 2 of them reports.

 

My LO will probably run another credit check around the end of the month too, so that would be great to have all the scores in the mid 700s.

 

Congrats again on your success!!


3/1/10: TU: 615, EQ: 640, EX: ???
6/8/10 (LO pulled): TU: 704, EQ: 689, EX: 694
Goal Score by Oct. 1: TU: 750, EQ: 750, EX: 750

Take the FICO Fitness Challenge
Moderator
MarineVietVet
Posts: 14,894
Registered: ‎07-14-2009
0

Re: Score impact of going from 89% util to <10%

Good job llecs!!!

 

Your post should be required reading for those who don't think having low utilization is important.  :smileywink:

 

 

 

From a BK years ago to:
EX - 9/09 pulled by lender 802
EQ - 7/06-663, 3/10-800
TU - 8/10-772

You can do the same thing with hard work


Moderator Emeritus
fused
Posts: 16,373
Registered: ‎03-12-2007
0

Re: Score impact of going from 89% util to <10%

 


llecs wrote:

All the numbers are in and the first post is fully updated.


 

Congrats! You made out better than I thought you would with EQ. Your EQ is 780, TU is 760, I wonder if your EX is 770? LOL! Did you get harded on TU for your loan? Has the new loan reported?

 

Credit Profile -
FICO 08 Scores (11-08-2014): EQ 818, EX 817, TU 822
All three scores were 850. Lost points for not having an open installment TL. So, BE WARNED!!!!!
Credit History: 26+ years ~ AAoA: 12 years ~ Util: 1% ~ Inqs: EX 1

Regular Contributor
kal9988
Posts: 169
Registered: ‎07-10-2010
0

Re: Score impact of going from 89% util to <10%

llecs, are you saying the $0 balances helped or hurt you? I have 4 CC's and I'd like to get them all under 3%. Do you think it's better to have 3 with a $0 balance and only use one, or have a small balance on each card, while still being under 3% overall?

Valued Contributor
my-own-fico
Posts: 1,299
Registered: ‎01-05-2010
0

Re: Score impact of going from 89% util to <10%

It's definitely best to have some cards at $0. It's my experience that the biggest boost comes from bringing down half the cards to $0.

 

From half, or slightly under half, of the cards to just one card with a plus balance, it'll get even better overall, but will also have tapered off considerably for each card. Having all cards at $0 will hurt you, but not as much as having all cards with a plus balance.

 

I should add that having just one card with a plus balance doesn't mean you should use just that one card. After all you wouldn't want to be penalized for inactivty. Instead, you zero those cards before the statement cutoff to please both the CCCs and the CRAs.

 

The above is based on a scenario like yours, in which all balances are small. If you have two cards, I would not recommend one at 52% and one at 0%. I would recommend both at 26%.

 

Are you living within your means?

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