Re: Can I really garden my way to 800+?
03-04-2013 11:56 AM
Thanks, Revelate, for moving the thread!
Interesting about the newer score models maybe giving higher scores. I know that the TU '08 at Walmart/GE is my highest score of all the FICOs and FAKOs that I know. Feels good, but I'm sticking with the Eq Beacon from MyFico as my ultimate reality check.
Understood on how mortgages and auto loans can help boost a score. Those are just something I don't need and hope I never do need. I've had both in the distant past, but find I'm happier without them. Mortages are so expensive and such hell for low-income self-employed people to get that I hope never to apply for one again.
Now to see how far I can get (in how long a time) just by gardening and fine tuning utilization. I know that at this point it's just "keeping score" rather than expecting any big benefit. But I do think that being closer to 800 would help me next year when my goal is to ask for APR decreases.
I have an 815 credit score and I don't think it is from my credit utilization or credit limit. I just received my first card over $10,000 from PenFed last month. A $16,500 PenFed Gas Card. My highest credit limit before that was a $8,200 limit store card. I only had 8 credit cards in my name. Most were store cards. I just closed 6 cards in the last month and I am interested to see if my score will drop or go up.
I have owned 9 cars in 10 years and paid off 4 car loans within 2 a 1/2 year period. I pay my mortgage more than double the minimum every month. I also paid off 1 gigantic student loan and am still paying on 2.
I attribute my 815 credit score to my variety of installment accounts and my mortgage. I have about 20% home equity now. I am making a wild guess here, but I think home equity might cancel out some negative effects of higher than recommended credit utilization.
My credit utilization is horrible. Usually over 50%. But my total utilization including mortgage, car loans, student loans, personal loans, and revolving credit are below 40%.
I only here people talk about their revolving credit utlization. I never hear anyone talk about their total utilization. When I get my credit report from Equifax, it breaks utilization down into 4 categories. Mortgage, installment loans, revolving accounts, and total of all 3.
I have a feeling that is what is keeping a lot of people from breaking 800. Their revolving account utilization might by under 9%, but what about their total? I pay my mortgage double per month. So it will only take me 9 years to pay off instead of 30. So my home equity is more in line with a person who has held a mortgage for much longer.
I am just guessing here. But I think a long established mortgage or really high home equity is what tips the iceberg for most people.