What I see for optimal scoring utilization wise is that it takes all cards to report a zero balance and one card at 9% or under, does that mean 9% of just that one card or 9% of your overall combined limits of all cards?
Say my overall credit limits of my cards combined are 10,000. If all of my cards are at zero except one which has a 1000 limit should I put no more than 90.00 on that one or can I put 900.00 on it and still be in the optimal scoring range?
First off always aim to make your balances LESS than the indicated breakpoint but not at it. In theory exactly 9.00% is fine, but in practice it is easy to be a few pennies over that, which will cause your actual percent to be 9.00035% (say) and FICO will round that up to 10%. You therefore want to make make sure you are at LESS than 9%.
In answer to your question, the 9% figure refers to total utilization. The three things to shoot for are:
All cards at Zero Except One (AZEO)
The remaining card that reports a positive balance should have an individual utilization of < 29%
Your total utilization should be < 9%.
But an easy practical way to do that is AZEO and one card with a small balance, like $20 or so.
I wasn't thinking to put a balance up to exactly 9% but was just wondering for my knowledge of all this. I put very small balances on my cards. I have 10,000 available but my balance right now is 40.00 on one card.