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Member
MamaCat
Posts: 9
Registered: ‎02-16-2012
0

When, and how much, will my FICO improve?

I am new here and still trying to sort through all the mumbo jumbo :smileyhappy:

My husband and I are thinking about buying our first home. We pulled our Equifax reports, and myFICO scores based on those reports. We have since taken a few steps to improve our scores - how soon until we see results?

 

The details...

My husband has no negatives on EQ, and a myFICO score of 741.

I have two flags, one is a single 30-day late payment from Nov 2006.This will just have to go away with time, and should be my only negative once everything else clears. The other is a (erronious, or at least incomplete info) string of late payments from 2/06 to 5/06, culminating in a 120 day late payment for a store cc. I called the company in question, and they are sending a letter to all three reporting agencies to remove any negative information for that account. (Essentially, I closed the account in 2/06 thinking it had a 0 balance. Some charge posted after the account was closed, and I didn't receive any notification until May, at which point I called them, got the late charges removed, paid the small amount that had posted after closing, and made sure it was actually at a $0 balance and closed).

 

The major factor (I think) affecting our scores was our cc balances. I paid mine down from about 63% usage to ~1% usage (16k max limit), and that should be reported on Feb 24th. My husband paid his down from ~90%+ to less than 10% (7k max limit) and his should report Feb 26th. (I got the reporting dates from the cc company).

I have $6455 cl in cards that are closed with 0 balances and in good status. I have no loan or mortgage history. (This is the first time I have ever regretted being able to pay as I went instead of taking out school loans *sigh*). My husband has a student loan that is about 25% paid off (~10k paid of an original ~40k). His loan is divided into 9 sections for some reason, but he only makes one monthly payment.

Our AAoAs are roughly 10 years. We have no inquiries, judgements, liens, or other negatives, but will get a hit each once our mortgage comparison stuff hits the credit agencies.

 

We had a mortgage lender pull our scores yesterday, and my husband's composite score was 727, while mine was uncomputable because one credit agency had no report for me (I am assuming it was Experian, because I have been unable to get a report from them myself - I posted about that issue in another thread). The lender did tell us that the two scores he had for me were the 694 Equifax score, and a 747, I assume from TransUnion.

 

So... the million dollar question (or at least 100k question) is, what sort of movement can we realistically expect in our scores in the short term? It sounds like a score of ~720 is a critical threshold for getting a stellar interest rate, and 740 is another plateau. Without being able to check Experian, I don't know how to realistically evaluate my numbers, but my 2-score average even before the dings are taken off is just above 720. What are the chances we'd both be above 740 if we wait a few weeks? Should we settle for numbers above 720? 

How long does it take to see a change in FICO after a new cc balance gets reported? After a negative payment issue is removed?

Thanks all!

03/15/2012 EQ: 784 (myFICO Score Watch alert)
03/01/2012 EQ:720 TU:797 EX:788 (lender pull)
02/29/2012 TU: 814 (myFICO quarterly report)
02/28/2012 EQ:720 (myFICO Score Watch alert)
02/27/2012 EQ:720 TU:746 EX:788 (lender pull)
02/15/2012 EQ:694 TU:746 (lender pull)
02/14/2012 EQ:694 (myFICO)
Established Contributor
namvet
Posts: 866
Registered: ‎09-22-2011
0

Re: When, and how much, will my FICO improve?


MamaCat wrote:

I am new here and still trying to sort through all the mumbo jumbo :smileyhappy:

My husband and I are thinking about buying our first home. We pulled our Equifax reports, and myFICO scores based on those reports. We have since taken a few steps to improve our scores - how soon until we see results?

 

The details...

My husband has no negatives on EQ, and a myFICO score of 741.

I have two flags, one is a single 30-day late payment from Nov 2006.This will just have to go away with time, and should be my only negative once everything else clears. The other is a (erronious, or at least incomplete info) string of late payments from 2/06 to 5/06, culminating in a 120 day late payment for a store cc. I called the company in question, and they are sending a letter to all three reporting agencies to remove any negative information for that account. (Essentially, I closed the account in 2/06 thinking it had a 0 balance. Some charge posted after the account was closed, and I didn't receive any notification until May, at which point I called them, got the late charges removed, paid the small amount that had posted after closing, and made sure it was actually at a $0 balance and closed).

 

The major factor (I think) affecting our scores was our cc balances. I paid mine down from about 63% usage to ~1% usage (16k max limit), and that should be reported on Feb 24th. My husband paid his down from ~90%+ to less than 10% (7k max limit) and his should report Feb 26th. (I got the reporting dates from the cc company).

I have $6455 cl in cards that are closed with 0 balances and in good status. I have no loan or mortgage history. (This is the first time I have ever regretted being able to pay as I went instead of taking out school loans *sigh*). My husband has a student loan that is about 25% paid off (~10k paid of an original ~40k). His loan is divided into 9 sections for some reason, but he only makes one monthly payment.

Our AAoAs are roughly 10 years. We have no inquiries, judgements, liens, or other negatives, but will get a hit each once our mortgage comparison stuff hits the credit agencies.

 

We had a mortgage lender pull our scores yesterday, and my husband's composite score was 727, while mine was uncomputable because one credit agency had no report for me (I am assuming it was Experian, because I have been unable to get a report from them myself - I posted about that issue in another thread). The lender did tell us that the two scores he had for me were the 694 Equifax score, and a 747, I assume from TransUnion.

 

So... the million dollar question (or at least 100k question) is, what sort of movement can we realistically expect in our scores in the short term? It sounds like a score of ~720 is a critical threshold for getting a stellar interest rate, and 740 is another plateau. Without being able to check Experian, I don't know how to realistically evaluate my numbers, but my 2-score average even before the dings are taken off is just above 720. What are the chances we'd both be above 740 if we wait a few weeks? Should we settle for numbers above 720? 

How long does it take to see a change in FICO after a new cc balance gets reported? After a negative payment issue is removed?

Thanks all!

You could expect a score change right away after your creditors report the new balances.  How much your score will increase will be hard to figure.  Based on the amount of principal reduction you have posted i would guess you would have a nice increase in your score.  Reducing debt is the fastest way to increase your scores.  My guess would be a 20-30 point increase (conservative).

 

Member
MamaCat
Posts: 9
Registered: ‎02-16-2012
0

Re: When, and how much, will my FICO improve?

I feel like a kid waiting for Christmas with the anticipating of seeing the FICO numbers move!

 

Is it true that EX usually has the median FICO score? At 746, my TU is significantly higher than my EQ (694). (Those are the unupdated scores).

03/15/2012 EQ: 784 (myFICO Score Watch alert)
03/01/2012 EQ:720 TU:797 EX:788 (lender pull)
02/29/2012 TU: 814 (myFICO quarterly report)
02/28/2012 EQ:720 (myFICO Score Watch alert)
02/27/2012 EQ:720 TU:746 EX:788 (lender pull)
02/15/2012 EQ:694 TU:746 (lender pull)
02/14/2012 EQ:694 (myFICO)
Established Contributor
namvet
Posts: 866
Registered: ‎09-22-2011
0

Re: When, and how much, will my FICO improve?


MamaCat wrote:

I feel like a kid waiting for Christmas with the anticipating of seeing the FICO numbers move!

 

Is it true that EX usually has the median FICO score? At 746, my TU is significantly higher than my EQ (694). (Those are the unupdated scores).


My EQ has always been my lowest score.  It is for most people...why?   Most banks and credit unions prefer EQ so more inquiries means lower score.  Patience is golden!

Moderator
pizzadude
Posts: 9,674
Registered: ‎01-28-2010
0

Re: When, and how much, will my FICO improve?

It really varies by individual as to which CRA is highest, lowest , or middle. These is no rule of thumb ~ it totally depends on the information on your reports. Some accounts, collections, inquiries, etc... only show on one or two CRs ~ for me I have always had a COllection on EQ that didn't show on the other two reports.
March2010 FICO® ~ 695 TU, 653 EQ, 697 EX
Member
MamaCat
Posts: 9
Registered: ‎02-16-2012
0

Re: When, and how much, will my FICO improve?

Update: We had a lender pull our scores again. My husbands apparently haven't updated yet, and he is still showing EQ 741, EX 727, TU 722.

My scores are showing up as EX 788, TU 746, EQ 720. The EX and EQ scores reflect updated cc balances, and based on the report code, it looks like I am being penalized for having a $0 cc balance ("No recent revolving balances" listed on the two updated accounts). TU is still listing "proportion of balances to CL is too high" so I am assuming that score will go up in the next few days. The error on the EQ report should be resolved soon also. (I finally received my paper copies of the EX and TU reports, and the error is not present on either of those, thankfully).

 

Score Watch alerted me when the inquiry from the lender posted, but I have not had a score change alert from myFICO yet. This is mainly confusing because my husband, with his un-updated reports, got a myFICO alert that his score had changed, yet I, with my updated EQ number, did not (I have my settings set to alert me when my score goes above 700).

 

I've seen some conflicting information out there on how long one has to complete comparison shopping while only getting dinged once. Most of the internet sources say either 2 weeks or 1 month, but I had a bank tell me today that _every_ inquiry gets reported as a negative, because the CRAs assume the worst, even when one is trying to be a responsible mortgage shopper by comparing rates and fees between lenders. Anyone care to weigh in on this issue?

03/15/2012 EQ: 784 (myFICO Score Watch alert)
03/01/2012 EQ:720 TU:797 EX:788 (lender pull)
02/29/2012 TU: 814 (myFICO quarterly report)
02/28/2012 EQ:720 (myFICO Score Watch alert)
02/27/2012 EQ:720 TU:746 EX:788 (lender pull)
02/15/2012 EQ:694 TU:746 (lender pull)
02/14/2012 EQ:694 (myFICO)
Moderator Emeritus
MarineVietVet
Posts: 14,492
Registered: ‎07-14-2009
0

Re: When, and how much, will my FICO improve?


MamaCat wrote:

I've seen some conflicting information out there on how long one has to complete comparison shopping while only getting dinged once. Most of the internet sources say either 2 weeks or 1 month, but I had a bank tell me today that _every_ inquiry gets reported as a negative, because the CRAs assume the worst, even when one is trying to be a responsible mortgage shopper by comparing rates and fees between lenders. Anyone care to weigh in on this issue?



What you were told is less than correct.

 

FICO scoring has a "de-duplication window" and it looks at your history for the last 12 months, and when it sees two or more hard inqs for the same type of mortgage or auto loan it will ignore all but one of them as far as scoring is concerned. If the lender is using an older FICO scoring model the window is 14 days, if they are using the newest model it can be up to 45 days. Also keep in mind that even though the multiple inqs count as one in FICO scoring, all of the inqs will continue to show on your reports (that is, reports pulled from sites other than myfico) for up to 2 years.

Senior Contributor
Walt_K
Posts: 3,065
Registered: ‎11-02-2009
0

Re: When, and how much, will my FICO improve?


MamaCat wrote:

Update: We had a lender pull our scores again. My husbands apparently haven't updated yet, and he is still showing EQ 741, EX 727, TU 722.

My scores are showing up as EX 788, TU 746, EQ 720. The EX and EQ scores reflect updated cc balances, and based on the report code, it looks like I am being penalized for having a $0 cc balance ("No recent revolving balances" listed on the two updated accounts). TU is still listing "proportion of balances to CL is too high" so I am assuming that score will go up in the next few days. The error on the EQ report should be resolved soon also. (I finally received my paper copies of the EX and TU reports, and the error is not present on either of those, thankfully).

 

Score Watch alerted me when the inquiry from the lender posted, but I have not had a score change alert from myFICO yet. This is mainly confusing because my husband, with his un-updated reports, got a myFICO alert that his score had changed, yet I, with my updated EQ number, did not (I have my settings set to alert me when my score goes above 700).

 

I've seen some conflicting information out there on how long one has to complete comparison shopping while only getting dinged once. Most of the internet sources say either 2 weeks or 1 month, but I had a bank tell me today that _every_ inquiry gets reported as a negative, because the CRAs assume the worst, even when one is trying to be a responsible mortgage shopper by comparing rates and fees between lenders. Anyone care to weigh in on this issue?


You can go into places with your credit reports and scores pulled by the other lender, and ask them what they can do for you based on those numbers.  Before you move forward, they will have to pull for themselves to verify, but they should be able to quote you rates based on the info you present without pulling your credit.

 

Also, agree with everything MVV said.


Starting Score: ~500 (12/01/2008)
Current Score: EQ 681 (04/05/13); TU 98 728 (01/06/12), TU 08? 760 (provided by Barclay 1/2/14), TU 04 728 (lender pull 01/12/12); EX 742 (lender pull 01/12/12)
Goal Score: 720


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Member
MamaCat
Posts: 9
Registered: ‎02-16-2012
0

Re: When, and how much, will my FICO improve?

We picked a mortgage lender! We are getting an interest rate of 3.625% and no origination fee, so the score boost from paying off CCs has definitely paid off.

I think the lender will do a hard pull for the loan tomorrow. My median score is now up above 740, so we're just waiting to see if one of the husband's scores will update before then. They ran the loan estimate using a 720 range, but if both medians go up above 740, we get another $710 credit toward closing costs.

 

The error on my EQ report still hasn't been fixed (nor have I seen the letter the CC company was supposed to send to me in addition to the CRAs telling them to take off any negative info) but at this point, it isn't really hurting me, and it will drop off based on age in a few months anyway, so I am thinking that it is probably not worth pursuing.

03/15/2012 EQ: 784 (myFICO Score Watch alert)
03/01/2012 EQ:720 TU:797 EX:788 (lender pull)
02/29/2012 TU: 814 (myFICO quarterly report)
02/28/2012 EQ:720 (myFICO Score Watch alert)
02/27/2012 EQ:720 TU:746 EX:788 (lender pull)
02/15/2012 EQ:694 TU:746 (lender pull)
02/14/2012 EQ:694 (myFICO)
Member
MamaCat
Posts: 9
Registered: ‎02-16-2012
0

Re: When, and how much, will my FICO improve?

This FICO vs. FAKO issue still has me a bit confused...

(see my sig for my score history)

     The EQ number I see from myFICO matches up with what lenders are pulling. However, I signed up for the myFICO TU quarterly reports yesterday, and my TU score popped up at 814. But today, the lender pull showed a TU score of 797. For my husband, the myFICO site reports EQ:794 and TU:781 (2/29). In his case, the EQ matches up, and the TU is off by only one point from the lender pull. The trimerge report says they are using "Transunion/Fico Classic (04)" for the score the lender pulled. Is the score difference due to the model being used? If so, are these both "real" FICO scores, or is one of them a FAKO? Also, my understanding was that scores can range from 300-850, but on the tri-merge report, each CRA reports a different range (EQ- 334-818, TU- 309-839, and EX- 320-844). What is that about?

   

03/15/2012 EQ: 784 (myFICO Score Watch alert)
03/01/2012 EQ:720 TU:797 EX:788 (lender pull)
02/29/2012 TU: 814 (myFICO quarterly report)
02/28/2012 EQ:720 (myFICO Score Watch alert)
02/27/2012 EQ:720 TU:746 EX:788 (lender pull)
02/15/2012 EQ:694 TU:746 (lender pull)
02/14/2012 EQ:694 (myFICO)

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