Newbies - read this thread and ask hauling about the credit hunting spree problem. It can really ding your scores.
Hauling, I would love to hear your credit story in general (maybe in another thread ! )I've only been on these forums for a few months, and always look forward to your posts (as I'm sure most of us do). You frequently allude to past mistakes (such as in your siggy), yet now you are obviously in control and very level-headed. How did you get to this point?
lol, not a huge story --I'm an example of flaming adult ADHD who used to be incredibly reluctant to deal with boring, everyday issues like following calendars and paying bills. I also got into a battle of wills with a daughter over who would pay for a bunch of store charges, and I wound up with a string of lates that put me into a serious derog score bucket.
I was very fortunate in that I always knew not to have balances on credit cards, so I never had an issue with debt. And I never had collections or judgments, so I didn't have to fight that war.
So I don't have anything terribly dramatic going on --just 8-10 lates on three or four accounts, which include a 60-day and a 90-day late. But that 90-day was enough to put me in the serious derog score bucket, with the charge-offs and collections, and that bucket will control my credit life until it falls off in another 4 years or whatever.
I just had to learn that it was time to grow up and get responsible. I think that I got hooked here on the forums because I'm fascinated by the math and logic (really! there is logic!) behind the scoring formulas, and like so many others here, I got interested in trying to break the formulas. And after a while, I found that I just like it here --the people, the issues, the humor, the occasional rages. And the trolls --troll-hunting makes life fun!
I completely agree with you that the FICO scoring formula is addictive...I started reading these forums 4 months ago and haven't looked back since. It's fascinating that you really can control your score to an extent (depending on your bucket), and knowing it just gets better with time is very satisfying!
I had the stereotypical bad credit experience...ran up my cards in college, couldn't pay them, went to collections. I also defaulted on student loans, and cannot believe it took me until 3 years ago to consolidate them into a positive federal loan. Luckily (ha) my credit was so bad that it prevented me from opening up any more tradelines while I was still young and stupid. Three years ago, after almost everything had fallen off, I started rebuilding, and have had nothing but positive history since then. My goal was to have good credit by age 30...I just turned 31 and while I'm not quite at 700, I'm close enough, and other than that dang $50 medical collection that I keep complaining about, I have no baddies (okay, my inquiries are not great - didn't learn that lesson until these forums ! But I'm so thankful that I at least kept everything healthy until coming here and learning the real strategies behind good credit. I was getting very frustrated that my credit limits are all low even with good history, but now knowing that just letting everything age, and getting my UTIL down even more (now down to 27% from about 60%) will eventually get me into the big league.
I'm watching my scores and DH's after our recent app-scapades. Ours were carefully planned (actually got brain freeze after all the research on these and other forums). So far, DH has taken 0 pts hit for inquiries or new accounts (yeah, I know, he doesn't get speeding tickets, either). I've taken -3 pt hit for inquiries, -5 for new accts (inc. balances - so we'll see what happens next month when PIF). There's still more to come as the reports finish out, so I'll keep you posted. I just found this post and found it very apropos (sp?) and helpful. Something to read while I'm sipping lemonade and waiting for those new accounts to age............
Are you SURE that you want to app? Here's why you only app after a LOT of thought...