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Any Useful Tips to Help Me Boost My Score?

New Visitor

Any Useful Tips to Help Me Boost My Score?

Hi Everyone, 

I've been on the rebuilding path for some time now. I had a BK (discharged in 2013). Within a year, I'd managed to ammass another pile of Credit card debt (long story, smh)

I've paid almost all of it off. I'm chipping away at the final 3k now (YAH!!) But it seems as if I've hit a wall with my credit scores. 

I have one credit card (Cap One Venture) that I'm using for just about everything. I pay if off frequently. For example, I had $8600 in transactions last month, the card has a $4500 limit. I've been trying to master paying it at the right time so that it reports AFTER I've paid it off, but that is still a work in progess. Unfortunatly, the card is needed for business purposes so not using it like this, isnt really an option, but again, I make several payments on the card each  month (usually ever week) to keep the credit line free'd up, etc)


Is there any thing else I can do to help lower utilization? 

I've paid off almost all of my debt collectors, My one credit card is in excellent standing (aside from having high utilization) I have high income. 

Current scores:

EQ: 577/Trans:552/EXP:578

BK Discharged 2013


Message 1 of 3
Valued Contributor

Re: Any Useful Tips to Help Me Boost My Score?

Welcome to the myFICO forums!


Ultimately, what a person needs to improve their FICO scores and build credit are three open credit cards (secured or unsecured) in good standing and one open installment loan in good standing such as a car, home, student, personal, share secured, or credit building loan. This combination is what the myFICO score theorists here have determined is what you need for optimal credit building and FICO score. You can have more CCs and more installment loans, however, this will not increase your FICO scores.


IMO, Discover it Secured is one of the best-secured CCs for poor credit, bad credit, and no credit applicants—and one of the best gas CCs you can get with bad credit. Disco offers 2% cash back at restaurants and gas stations (one up to $1,000 in combined purchases each quarter) and 1% cash back on other purchases. You’ll need an up-front security deposit of at least $200 to apply for the Discover it Secured Card.

Capital One Secured CC requires a refundable security deposit of $49, $99 or $200 based on your creditworthiness. Make the minimum required security deposit and you'll get an initial credit line of $200. Plus, deposit more money before your account opens to get a higher credit line. Get access to a higher credit line after making your first 5 monthly payments on time.

Bank of America's BankAmericard Secured CC is designed to help establish, strengthen or rebuild credit for an annual fee of $39. A minimum refundable security deposit of $300 is required to open this account. Your maximum credit limit will be determined by the amount of the security deposit you provide, your income and your ability to pay the credit line established. If you provide a deposit that exceeds the calculated maximum amount based on your ability to pay, a will be returned to you for the difference. BoA periodically reviews your account and, based on your overall credit history (including your account with us and other credit cards and loans), you may qualify to have your security deposit returned. Not all customers will qualify.

Next, (this is only important if you are attempting to purchase a large ticket item like a home or car) is paying in full all of the credit card balances each month, before the posting date, except one. This is called the All Zero Except One (AZEO) method. The one credit card you allow to post a balance needs to be less than 8.9% of the credit limit of the card. So using one card each month to buy lunch, letting it report and then paying in full will maximize FICO scoring. Keeping your utilization of your cards below 28.9% both individually and collectively will prevent you from incurring a FICO scoring penalty.

An installment loan will have its greatest impact on your FICO score when the amount owed is at 8.9% or less of the original amount owed which is usually in the final months before the loan is paid in full. If you don't have an installment loan you can check into Self Lender or a Share Secured Loan at a Credit Union.

Keep in mind, building credit is a marathon, not a sprint. It involves demonstrating to a potential creditor that you can handle credit responsibly. If you have open, active credit accounts that are being paid on time and pay all of your bills on time every time, apply for credit only when you actually need it and use credit cards sparingly maintaining low credit utilization, then you’re going to earn and maintain great credit scores. It would be impossible for you not to do so. This is the fastest way you can build good, solid credit.

Your FICO credit scores are not just numbers, it’s a skill.

Message 2 of 3
Frequent Contributor

Re: Any Useful Tips to Help Me Boost My Score?

How long has it been since your last CLI? With usage like that I suspect you should get some nice increases when eligible (every 180 days). My Cap1 started at $500-->$750-->$900-->$1250-->$4250-->$7250. The more I used it the bigger the increases.


Utilization is your balance/CL on the date your statement cuts. So... as long as you pay the balance down significantly before the statement cuts your utilization should not be a problem.

Message 3 of 3
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