e loans to reduce number of installmen t accounts on credit report?
09-11-2012 10:51 AM
I'm fearful that if I consolidate, that it will actually hurt me and not help me. Basically, I want to turn 13 installment accounts into 1. But is that too few installment accounts on my credit report?
The number of installment accounts reporting, and the balances on those accounts has very little impact on your score relative to things like negative payment history, collections, and high CC balances. You're probably talking about around 10 points either way.
Installment loans help by improving your mix of credit (if it's your first/only installment loan), and also by giving you a good payment history. When you do a consolidation, you will see that "new account" ding, and an inquiry on your report as well (at least I think they do a hard, maybe not though, Federal loans are not based on credit). But both of those will fade fairly quickly compared to the length of the loan.
Do whatever helps you save money and make on-time payments, those are the two biggest wins that will help your credit the most overall.