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Take the myFICO Fitness Challenge 2017!

Moderator Emeritus

Take the myFICO Fitness Challenge 2017!

Happy New Year to the myFICO Forums Community!
Can you believe we’re entering our EIGHTH year of the myFICO Fitness Challenge? If you have financial goals, the myFICO Fitness Challenge is the place for you!

What is the myFICO Fitness Challenge?
To take part in the myFICO Fitness Challenge, simply post an introductory note and state your financial goals for the coming year. Are you hoping to raise your FICO Score? Buy your first home? A new car? Get that coveted rewards card? Tell us about what you hope to achieve, and what reaching those financial goals will mean to you. As the year progresses, check back here to report on your progress, talk about hurdles you encounter, or simply reach out for support and encouragement from your fellow Fitness Challengers.

Monthly Check-Ins
To help you stay on track we encourage you to stop by for monthly check-ins. On the first day of each month, myFICO will post a monthly check-in thread for you to talk about your progress, successes, speedbumps, etc. Participation in these monthly check-ins is optional - but encouraged!

First time Challenger?
If you’re new to the myFICO Fitness Challenge, then welcome! To begin, set up your official  MyFICO Siggy signature on your Profile page (Go to My Settings=>Personal Profile=>Personal Information). Then just reply to this topic, telling us a little about your financial situation, your goals, and how you plan to achieve them during the coming year.

Returning Challenger?
Welcome back! Please be sure to update your myFICO Fitness Challenge signature so it directs to the current challenge. You can also tell us about your results in MyFICO Fitness Wrap Up 2016!   

Message 1 of 124
123 REPLIES 123
Valued Contributor

Re: Take the myFICO Fitness Challenge 2017!

I’m a returning Challenge member.  I originally joined challenge in 4/2014,  but I keep meeting a surpassing my goals.  


Joined the fitness challenge in 4/2014 & met al my goal by 8/2014.  Which were: 1) Improve FICO score to 760 - 850 range 2) Get pre-approved for new home loan 3) Buy new home in Bay Area (relocating near adult kids).  In August I established a new goal:  1) not have more, total debt, for credit cards and student loans than I had at the beginning of 2014.


Paid off student loan. Thus, my new goal effective 10/2015 was to keep cc debt below 1/2014 and to pay off new house at least 10 years sooner than 30 year loan. My credit card  debt was $30, Jan 2014.  


In December 2015 my  credit card debt  was  $3845.65  and I did a re-fi to a 15 year mortgage loan.  My Refi mortgage maturity date was Jan 2031 which surpassed the 10 year sooner goal.


My challenge for 2016 was to pay off my new 15 yr mortgage at least 1 year sooner than Jan2031 and to keep cc debt below 20K.


My challenge for 2017 will remain the  same.  My current cc debt is $641 and my Refi maturity date is Dec 2030.

Original Mortgage maturity Sept 2044; Refi maturity Dec 2030
Starting Score: EX 751 EQ 720 TU 737 on 4/9/14
Current Score: EX 849 EQ 835 TU 843
Goal Score: 850

Take the myFICO Fitness Challenge
Message 2 of 124
Moderator Emeritus

Re: Take the myFICO Fitness Challenge 2017!

Returning for #6 I think!


2016: This was a squirrley year for me and I'm glad we finally put the nail in the coffin of it.  Financially was no exception with the aborted school run and I flatly failed to achieve my EQ FICO 5 goal score of 700 (needed to get down to 2 inquiries on that file to reach it, but no, stuck at 693... but that all changes soon!).


2017: I get CLEAN! Completely, for first time in my entire credit using life on both Experian and Equifax, which lucky for me are the only two I care about personally Smiley Happy.  I still have a stray 30 day late on Transunion from 10/15 when I got sloppy and stupid in my life but not the end of the world since none of my lenders wants to see my TU report (their choice not mine).


Financial: I'm in a holding pattern finally, have a new job that'll run for about a year that's going to send me all over the world which I have every intention of doing well, so there won't be time to make any significant life or credit changes back at home.  I'm going to pay off the 10K HELOC balance I ran up over the past year attending school and fortunately other than my mortgage I'm caught up everywhere on my debts other than 2016 tax payment which I'm not sure I have much this year.  Going to have to redo my budget with the new look finances of reimbursed travel.  Excess money likely gets dumped into investment accounts, thought about just airstriking my mortgage but it's seriously cheap money so probably not.  If rates go back down maybe I roll into an ARM and then hammer the balance but I don't think that's going to occur.


Credit: I should really get a top end travel card for this expedition.  I have an app in for a CSR which got kicked back 5/24 style but I'm going to go ask for a favor which maybe they grant me maybe they don't, or I just wind up PCing my CSP (which isn't the end of the world not getting a bonus) or picking up the Citi Prestige, but that's literally the only thing I expect to do... and it'd be excellent if I can sort this out without opening up a Citi account, would be nice just to have everything credit fully done and left in 2016 and just sit on my hands in 2017.  Going to see where my heads at after I talk to Chase on that I guess.


I may do some dumb inquiry testing on TU, maybe.  It'd be interesting to me anyway and I don't care about the file even on a mortgage app since I'll be good EX/EQ assuming I don't screw up somewhere again, so might be useful to improve our understanding there.


Goal scores: moon shot time finally - EQ 5/EX 2: 750, FICO 8's 800 or bust baby!  May not make it on TU cause of the then 2 year old late but I have hope!


Best of luck to everyone in 2017, it's going to be a good year for me, I hope it will be for you!




Message 3 of 124
Senior Contributor

Re: Take the myFICO Fitness Challenge 2017!

First time challenge member here! I've been looking forward to joining for a while now, and am looking forward to checking in each month, and staying on track.


My 2017 goals are:


1). To garden the cards I got last year post-BK, letting those tradelines age and grow. without opening any new tradelines.

2). To continue to manage utilization and reported balances

3). To watch my inquiries drop from EQ 6, TU 5, EX 8 down to EQ 3, TU4, EX 4 by June.

4). To pay an extra $100/month on my highest balance and highest interest student loan, which is upside down due to interest accruing while in deferment (I know I should have paid it as I went, but the BK and events leading up to didn't allow for that).

5). To continue saving about 10% of my gross income each month.


Pretty simple and it doesn't require a lot of action, just restraint! Smiley Happy

Current Scores: EQ 679;TU 647; EX 679 Gardening since 11/7/18
Beginning Scores-- EQ 632; TU 576; EX 619 FICO 08 (06/13/16) - BK7 discharged 11/2015
Message 4 of 124
New Contributor

Re: Take the myFICO Fitness Challenge 2017!

Another first time challenger (actually I may have joined a few years ago, not sure).  I started my rebuild just under a month ago.


Definitely ready to start a new year! 2015 and 2016 have been pretty hard years, and I'm hopeful for some new things on the horizon in 2017.


Basic financial goals: 


1) To have a steady income again.  Not quite there yet, but I'm hopeful this will change soon.

2) To pay off old debts.  I'm hoping by the end of 2017 I will not owe any banks/CAs/etc any money this will be a HUGE weight off my shoulders.  I may still have some personal debts to individuals, but I am hopeful that I'll be able to at least get a start paying those back again as well.


Credit specific goals:


1) Get as many of my lates and charge offs GW'd as I can.  While I'm still paying some of these off, I'm hoping that enough time has passed since the initial delinquency that I'll be able to have decent luck with GW letters.  Regardless - however much I can accomplish, it will be nice to have that many fewer pockmarks on my reports.

2) Pick up 2 unsecured credit cards so I can cancel my Merrick (which won't graduate) and keep my Citi secured card which should graduate in time (would also be acceptable to get secured cards which I can expect to graduate eventually).  Would like to have 3 unsecured cards or cards which will eventually graduate - preferrably with no annual fees.

3) Get my credit cleaned up to a point where, if my business partner and I need to get funding for a large inventory order, the banks won't just laugh at me (not sure yet what that point is to be honest... probably depends on the size of the loan, I guess).



Goal Scores:



I honestly have no idea what's possible, but I think there are enough positive changes within reach to make that happen.  That's a pretty big jump considering all 3 scores were under 500 a few weeks ago (only one is above now).


Credit decimated by health issues, rebuild starting point: Dec 2016
Starting Score: EX: 485 - EQ: 486 - TU: 475
Current Score (Oct 29, 2017):EX: 574 - EQ: 596 - TU: 586
Goal Score (Jan 01, 2018): 600+

Take the myFICO Fitness Challenge

Message 5 of 124
Established Contributor

Re: Take the myFICO Fitness Challenge 2017!

Count me in for 2017!


I posted this in the initial January 2017 checkin, but will do it here as well for completeness sake. Smiley Wink


I did not meet either of my EQ goals for 2016 (mortgage or Fico 8).  I'm still waiting for SSL to report, but I know it still won't help these scores, so I consider it a done deal.  I did however meet my TU and EX score goals.


My biggest mistake from last year was that my goals were based on the simulator projections AND I app'd for cards which dropped my scores some, though even without the drop, I still would not have missed the mark, so meh.


My main goals for 2017 are:

  • Reach Fico 8 700+ score across the board. This esssentially only means increasing my EQ score. TU and EX are already above 700.
  • Get middle mortgage score to atleast 740.  Currently, my middle mortgage score is 738....almost there!
  • Save atleast 5% down for mortgage. 
  • Have pre-approval mortgage offers in hand by end of 2017.
  • STAY in the garden until close on mortgage. 

Although I am not sure it's possible, I would also like to accomplish the following:

  • Try to get the three 30-day lates off of my CRs via GW letters
  • Try to get the PIF State Tax lien removed from my EQ and TU reports.

I REALLY want to get that state tax lien off of my CRs!  


Now that I have a baseline of CCs to grow from, I can now put all of my focus on getting a squeaky clean report.  I have a feeling I will be getting very familiar with GW letters and making a ton of calls. I may even have to resort to the saturation technique, but ummmm.... I prefer not! Smiley Tongue


gardening: 01/05/2019 updated: 01/23/2019 rebuild: 2/2016 EQ 648 TU 642 EX 663
Start Mort: EQ 800 TU 800 EX 805 Fico 8: EQ 794 TU 806 EX 825
Curr Mort.: EQ 800 TU 800 EX 805 Fico 8: EQ 794 TU 806 EX 825
Goal Mort.: EQ 850 TU 850 EX 850 Fico 8: EQ 850 TU 850 EX 850
Take the myFICO Fitness Challenge
Message 6 of 124
Established Member

Re: Take the myFICO Fitness Challenge 2017!

Current debt: ~$34K in a consolidation loan, will be fully paid off before the end of 2019.

All revolving credit $0 balance, except daily-use Rewards card that is PIF several times per month.


2017 goals:

1) Pay as aggressively as possible on the loan.

2) Not incur any additional debt.

3) Explore the possibility of finding a cheap beater RV on Craigslist and boondocking for a year or two, to save on rental expenses and eliminate debt more quickly.

4) Continue to clean up credit reports (a few lingering issues, such as an ambulance bill that was paid on time by insurance, and should never have gone to collections; still fighting the good fight)

5) Continue to use Rewards card for free monthly money, and PIF several times per month.

6) Research and plan our eventual condo purchase (as soon as the consolidation loan is paid, and the Ch7 falls off, we should be able to save our down payment within a year; current target 2020, sooner if the opportunity presents itself).



I've lurked on the forums since before 2010, and credit this incredible repository of knowledge and support with the improvements I've managed so far.


My debt history is on my profile;

the TL;dr is:
Family medical issues (and the inexperience of youth) led to initial debt,

job loss/disability (and COBRA) led to Ch7,

spousal illness and leeching friends delayed post-BK recovery,

but as of Dec 2016 all is well and recovery is finally back on track and gaining momentum!

Starting Score 9/13/14: 570
Current Score 12/31/2016: 640
Goal Score 2017: 690

Take the myFICO Fitness Challenge
Message 7 of 124
Established Member

Re: Take the myFICO Fitness Challenge 2017!

I had an unexpected career change in '08 that included returning to school and taking on student loan debt and increasing credit card debt.


My goals for 2017

1) Raise FICO to 760+

2) Reduce credit card debt by 1/3 to 1/2

3) Increase overall CL

4) Patiently sit in the garden 

FICO 08 (Jan '15): EQ: 662 TU: 662 EX: 688
FICO 08 (Jan '17): EQ: 698 TU: 694 EX: 720
Goal: All:750+
Message 8 of 124
Valued Contributor

Re: Take the myFICO Fitness Challenge 2017!

Happy New Year fellow Challengers!


I'm a first time Challenger, most of the time gardener joining in for 2017.


Financially, my 2017 goals are no different than usual - live below my means, continue to set aside savings, continue to max my retirement accounts, and continue pay CCs in full.


My credit goals for 2017 are to...


1) ...completely rid my CRs of my 2007 BK7. I've managed early exclusion with TU (at 6 months) and EX (at 3 months). I shall try with EQ at 1 month prior to deleition (next month), but if it doesn't work, what's one more month.


2)...continue gardening. All three of my CRs remain frozen, with the exception of the temporary lift on EX to get my quarterly MF 3B report. I really don't need more in the way of credit cards, so why even given myself temptation.


3)...close at least one credit card. I had mentioned that I was going to combine my QS WMC into my QS VS (which has the higher line and lower interest rate), but I had second thoughts as my QS WMC will be turning 10 this July. It was also the first card that I got out of BK, which I get shouldn't be a reason to keep a card, but well, I'm a little attached. It's SD'd but has recurring housecleaning, gym, and dry cleaning charges going to it, so it still has function (because I hate talking on the phone to change all the info). The big one on the chopping block is BoA Cash Rewards with one of my lowest limits (and I don't want to violate goal 2)). Also, thinking about closing Delta SM Platinum and moving the limit to my BCE. (I've managed to keep my Silver Medallion status for another year, which gives me free first bag. The Companion Pass might be the reason to keep this, since the points structure has now been upstaged by AmEx Platinum.)


4)...get my FICO8 scores above 780, preferably 800. EQ is the only one that is sitting below 780. I don't know that it will improve to over 780 once the BK comes off, but we shall see. 800+ is certainly possible if I keep chipping away at my student loan balance (which had a balance to loan ratio of 101% at the end of December). 


5)...spend less time on MF.


I love the boards, but I find myself obsessing over a lot of things that I really don't need to worry about now that I'm at a point in rebuilding where I just need to let time pass. Now that I'm closer to getting to goal 1) and continuing goal 2), goal 4) shouldn't be as hard (just a matter of time), and getting goal 3) done just means I need to talk to a human on the phone. 


Good luck, all! I'm excited to be a part of the journey.

Message 9 of 124
New Contributor

Re: Take the myFICO Fitness Challenge 2017!

First time on this site and taking any challenge that doesn't involve food lol. I've never been that great with Credit until a few months ago. I raised my score 75-100 points since February with some up and downs due to collections magically appearing on my reports from years ago. I was able to get approved for two Harley Davidson's, a $2000 credit line for Ideal Image, and two CCs (CapOne and Credit One). I want to continue raising my score this year.


My goals are:

1. Raise my scores at least 50 points

2. Get approved for my first auto loan

3. Pay off my highest credit account (Fortiva)

Starting Score: EX 655, TU 583, EQ 598
Current Score: EX 651, TU 662, EQ 640
Goal Score: 700s
Message 10 of 124
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