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FICO vs Vantage, Help Me Understand

BrutalBodyShots
Super Contributor

Re: FICO vs Vantage, Help Me Understand


@Trying47 wrote:

 

I would love to get rid of my rebuilders, but then my credit age will drop drastically so it's a double edged sword.


Closing accounts does not impact your credit age.  Both open and closed accounts on your credit report are factored in equally to age of accounts.  Any impact from account closure(s) would typically be seen 10 years from closure when it falls off of your report.

 

Also prequals aren't the be all end all.  I'm not saying go ahead and apply for those products or any others, simply that you don't need a prequal for them.  I don't know that I've ever been prequalified for any of the cards I've applied for.

Message 11 of 23
Trying47
Valued Member

Re: FICO vs Vantage, Help Me Understand

I did just apply for a Discover and was approved. The limit is only $500, but that's ok. It's a step in the right direction. They used my Experian which is my lowest score.

Starting Score: 470
Current Score: 692
Goal Score: 800


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Message 12 of 23
Slabenstein
Established Contributor

Re: FICO vs Vantage, Help Me Understand

W/ regards to apping for a new non-builder card, if it were me, I'd probably roll the dice on an unsecured Disco, but I think I'd wait on the Cap1 w/o a prequal, since it's a triple pull.  How many inquiries do you have at each bureau?

 

For closing cards, I just want to echo what BBS said: closed accounts are a part of your FICO aging metrics for as long as they're on your reports, which is usually up to 10 years.  Rebuilder cards aren't good account age anchors regardless, since they usually charge annual or monthly fees and don't offer the rewards to recoup them.   Of the cards you have now, the NFCU is the long-term keeper for aging metrics.

 

ETA: Grtz on the Disco approval!


Message 13 of 23
Trying47
Valued Member

Re: FICO vs Vantage, Help Me Understand

For inquiries, I have 2 each on Equifax and Transunion, 5 on Experian. I'm trying to be very careful in my selections with any hard pulls. 

Now that I'm approved for another good card, I will begin subtracting from the rebuilders. One of the reasons I have been hesitant to close, aside from credit age, is that I also get dinged for the amount of credit being too low. 

Starting Score: 470
Current Score: 692
Goal Score: 800


Take the myFICO Fitness Challenge
Message 14 of 23
BrutalBodyShots
Super Contributor

Re: FICO vs Vantage, Help Me Understand


@Trying47 wrote:

I did just apply for a Discover and was approved. The limit is only $500, but that's ok. It's a step in the right direction. They used my Experian which is my lowest score.


Congratulations on your approval!  Discover is a great card and over time can grow, so don't sweat the $500 SL.  Also with your approval you proved that a prequal isn't necessary, so nice job with that.

Message 15 of 23
BrutalBodyShots
Super Contributor

Re: FICO vs Vantage, Help Me Understand


@Trying47 wrote:

 

Now that I'm approved for another good card, I will begin subtracting from the rebuilders. One of the reasons I have been hesitant to close, aside from credit age, is that I also get dinged for the amount of credit being too low. 


There is no scoring penalty for having low credit limits.  The limits in and of themselves are not a scoring factor.  You can have 3 different individuals that each have 3 credit cards.  One has all $500 limit cards, the other all $5000 limit cards and the last all $50,000 limit cards.  All 3 would be capable of possessing the same Fico scores on an otherwise identical credit file.  With lower credit limits one only has to watch their reported balances a bit more closely, as an equal reported balance on a small limit card represents a larger utilization percentage than the same balance on a large(r) limit card.  That larger utilization percentage can of course impact Fico scoring. 

Message 16 of 23
BrutalBodyShots
Super Contributor

Re: FICO vs Vantage, Help Me Understand

So to recap, you now have 5 credit cards, correct?  You've got the 3 rebuilder ones, NFCU and Discover;  Looking at just the rebuilder cards, do all of them have annual fees?  Do you have balances on them and what are their limits?

 

Without knowing much more, my initial advice for you would be to close 2 out of 3 of those rebuilder cards.  Before doing so you want to make sure they have a $0 balance.  If one doesn't have an AF, perhaps keep that one open.  You can try calling all of them (if they all have AFs) and tell them you are going to close the card unless the AF is eliminated.  Some may not care, but one could drop it.  If so, you could keep that card open with a $0 balance until you acquire a 3rd major bank card at some point, say 6-12 months from now.  At that time you could close the final rebuilder card.  This would keep you at 3 open cards.

 

There's not too much known about negative information thresholds on files, but you said you're at 11 months of solid payment history.  That means that in a month or so you'll reach 12 months since your last negative item, which could result in some score increases.  Not applying for any further credit for another 6-12 months will allow some of those inquiries you have to age and possibly drop off (not sure of their dates?). 

 

My advice for your credit cards if you drop to 3 would be to use your NFCU and Discover cards monthly as you naturally would, while leaving your 3rd with a $0 balance in the sock drawer.  Right before you payment due date I would suggest paying one of your 2 cards down to $0 (paying off your current balance, not just statement balance) so that it [also] reports $0 in addition to your sock drawer card.  With your final card, pay off all but a small dollar balance of say $10.  For example, let's take your $500 limit Discover card.  Say you make $350 in purchases on it during the month and the payment due date is on the 1st.  On/about the 29th/30th of the month pay $340.  Shortly after the 1st of the month (probably the 4th or so) your statement will cut with a $10 balance.  That balance will get reported to the bureaus.  You will be at ideal utilization, both on that card and overall.  This is known as AZEO (all zero except one) and will optimize your Fico scores across all models. 

Message 17 of 23
Trying47
Valued Member

Re: FICO vs Vantage, Help Me Understand

All 3 have an annual fee unfortunately. They are $500 limits. It's hard to choose which is worse, so I guess I will do a random draw lol. They do all have small balances, but will be paid in full Friday.

 

I am so hoping for a score bump after I hit the 12 month mark. I have been working diligently to fix my credit and want to see the payoff that comes with it.

 

I'm trying hard to follow the AZEO, I just blipped it over December and had balances I don't normally have.

 

I just really wish the VS would catch up with the FS. It's so discouraging to see a drop in anything.

Starting Score: 470
Current Score: 692
Goal Score: 800


Take the myFICO Fitness Challenge
Message 18 of 23
Slabenstein
Established Contributor

Re: FICO vs Vantage, Help Me Understand


@Trying47 wrote:

All 3 have an annual fee unfortunately. They are $500 limits. It's hard to choose which is worse, so I guess I will do a random draw lol. They do all have small balances, but will be paid in full Friday.

 

I am so hoping for a score bump after I hit the 12 month mark. I have been working diligently to fix my credit and want to see the payoff that comes with it.

 

I'm trying hard to follow the AZEO, I just blipped it over December and had balances I don't normally have.

 

I just really wish the VS would catch up with the FS. It's so discouraging to see a drop in anything.


If everything else is equal, you could choose the two that have their AFs coming due the soonest.  That puts the remaining AF the furthest out.


Message 19 of 23
BrutalBodyShots
Super Contributor

Re: FICO vs Vantage, Help Me Understand


@Trying47 wrote:

All 3 have an annual fee unfortunately. They are $500 limits. It's hard to choose which is worse, so I guess I will do a random draw lol. They do all have small balances, but will be paid in full Friday.

 

I am so hoping for a score bump after I hit the 12 month mark. I have been working diligently to fix my credit and want to see the payoff that comes with it.

 

I'm trying hard to follow the AZEO, I just blipped it over December and had balances I don't normally have.

 

I just really wish the VS would catch up with the FS. It's so discouraging to see a drop in anything.


As I mentioned in an earlier post, try contacting all 3 of them and seeing if any will drop your AF.  I think you stand pretty reasonable odds of one of them saying yes.  Just basically threaten to close the account.  The worst they can say is no and the best they can say is "sure no problem, we don't want to lose you as a customer" blah blah.  If you're able to get the AF waived on one of them I'd then close the other 2.

 

Again, don't worry about VS.  You're dumping your rebuilder lenders that use them and no one you look toward in the future will care about them.  Your VS could drop 200 points and at this stage of the game for you it wouldn't (and shouldn't) matter.

Message 20 of 23
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