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How is utilization reported to FICO?

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Wooohah
New Member

How is utilization reported to FICO?

Apologies in advance if this is a rather basic question.

When/ how is total credit utilization reported to FICO? Is my credit utilization simply whatever shows as "last statement balance"? 
If I want to lower my utilization, should my goal be to pay off my balance in full before the "statement closing date" and keep it at 0 or as low as possible until the business day after the statement closing date? 

 

Attached is a picture:
Would I just pay it off before the 17th, and make sure the balance shows as $0 through the end of the 17th? 

https://imgur.com/a/Wlbr4fw

Thank you so much!

Message 1 of 8
7 REPLIES 7
FireMedic1
Community Leader
Mega Contributor

Re: How is utilization reported to FICO?

Depends on how many cards you have. Use you cards all you want to get the perks. Then pay it down below 8% before the statement cuts. From your pic it appears the 17th is your statement date. Once it post the balance. Then pay before the due date. Never have all cards report a $0 balance. Best case is 3 cards and 1 reports.


Message 2 of 8
tcbofade
Super Contributor

Re: How is utilization reported to FICO?

For MOST credit cards, yes.

 

Your utilization is determined by whatever numbers are reported to the CRAs.  For most credit cards, that is your statement balance.  If you want to report a zero balance, pay in full before the statement cuts.

 

Some banks and credit unions report your balance on the last business day of the month, NOT your statement balance.  (US Bank and Community America come immediately to mind... I'm sure that there are more...)

 

 

07/01/24 Fico 8: EX 766, EQ 811, TU 787.
Fico 9: EX 772 07/14/24, EQ 789 07/04/24, TU No idea.

Zero percent financing is where the devil lives...
Message 3 of 8
Wooohah
New Member

Re: How is utilization reported to FICO?

Gotcha! Thank you. I'll keep 2 out of my 3 cards reporting as Zero, then try to do 8% on my 3rd card

Message 4 of 8
Wooohah
New Member

Re: How is utilization reported to FICO?

Perfect, thank you! I always thought before that the credit card companies reported to the credit bureaus every 30-45 days and the reporting day would differ from month to month. Simplifies things a ton if its just my statement closing date. 

Do you know by chance if this is what Citi does? All of my cards are through Citi 

Message 5 of 8
SouthJamaica
Mega Contributor

Re: How is utilization reported to FICO?


@Wooohah wrote:

Apologies in advance if this is a rather basic question.

When/ how is total credit utilization reported to FICO? Is my credit utilization simply whatever shows as "last statement balance"? 
If I want to lower my utilization, should my goal be to pay off my balance in full before the "statement closing date" and keep it at 0 or as low as possible until the business day after the statement closing date? 

 

Attached is a picture:
Would I just pay it off before the 17th, and make sure the balance shows as $0 through the end of the 17th? 

https://imgur.com/a/Wlbr4fw

Thank you so much!


1. The date of the reported balance is usually -- but not always -- the statement balance. You need to monitor your reports to know for sure; CSR's don't know the answer to that question. The majority of my accounts report the statement date, but there are exceptions. (Some report the balance from the last day of the month or the first day of the next month; I have one that reports on the 5th of the month, and another that reports irregularly during the week after the statement closes. Also Chase reports a zero balance any time of the month when an account is paid down to zero).

2. Your safest bet for across-the-board score optimization, especially with your mortgage scores, is to have one bank card (not a Chase card) report a small balance, while the other revolving accounts report zero balances.

3. If all of your revolving accounts report zero balances, your scores will get hit with an "All Zero" penalty.


Total revolving limits 650200 (530700 reporting) FICO 8: EQ 708 TU 714 EX 715

Message 6 of 8
tcbofade
Super Contributor

Re: How is utilization reported to FICO?


@Wooohah wrote:

Perfect, thank you! I always thought before that the credit card companies reported to the credit bureaus every 30-45 days and the reporting day would differ from month to month. Simplifies things a ton if its just my statement closing date. 

Do you know by chance if this is what Citi does? All of my cards are through Citi 


Citi reports the statement balance...usually a few days after the statement closes.

 

Good luck!

07/01/24 Fico 8: EX 766, EQ 811, TU 787.
Fico 9: EX 772 07/14/24, EQ 789 07/04/24, TU No idea.

Zero percent financing is where the devil lives...
Message 7 of 8
Phana24
Regular Contributor

Re: How is utilization reported to FICO?


@Wooohah wrote:

Apologies in advance if this is a rather basic question.

When/ how is total credit utilization reported to FICO? Is my credit utilization simply whatever shows as "last statement balance"? 
If I want to lower my utilization, should my goal be to pay off my balance in full before the "statement closing date" and keep it at 0 or as low as possible until the business day after the statement closing date? 

 

Attached is a picture:
Would I just pay it off before the 17th, and make sure the balance shows as $0 through the end of the 17th? 

https://imgur.com/a/Wlbr4fw

Thank you so much!


First off, no need to apologize, we all started someplace, and it's much easier to ask a question rather than spend a couple of month lurking like I did to get the answer.  You've gotten solid advice, especially from @SouthJamaica .  The only think I would add is that if you have a Discover card, use it as the "reporting" card.  Their reporting is entirely predictable AND in the event you get caught at the wrong time with a surprise balance on another card, Disc will report during the cycle if you ask them. 

Message 8 of 8
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