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If you only have 1 CC, 0 or 1% util?

Regular Contributor

If you only have 1 CC, 0 or 1% util?

So I've read quite a bit about util, however, I never came across anything that applied directly to my situation.


I currently only have 1 TL reporting (CC) and my AAoA is 1 year (had the CC for about 1.3 years).  I know people often say you want one card reporting 1% and the rest reporting 0%, but how if you only have one card?

With 0% util:

TU98: 796

EQ: 742.

With 1% util:

TU98: 770

EQ: 746


With the thought in mind of applying for 2-3 new cards, which do you think will look the best?  I know my AAoA will hurt me, but speaking strictly util-wise, is it better I have the freakishly high TU with only 1 TL, or let the 1% report and have the lower TU and slightly increased EQ score?


Side note: I have no baddies on my report whatsoever (very thin file, this is the only thing reporting on it, period).

Message 1 of 3
Moderator Emeritus

Re: If you only have 1 CC, 0 or 1% util?

You do have high scores and congrats to you on that.  However as you have said you do have a thin file.  This may prevent you from getting some credit lines due to the fact you have but 1 revolving account.  The general rule is 3 revolving accounts to make full use of it.  I do advise only apping for anything if you absolutely need, or want it.  If you take the hit now for Inqs and the AAoA they will age rather quickly and will demonstrate better use of revolving credit.  Good Luck!

Starting Score: 504
July 2013 score:
EQ FICO 819, TU08 778, EX "806 lender pull 07/26/2013
Goal Score: All Scores 760+, Newest goal 800+
Take the myFICO Fitness Challenge

Current scores after adding $81K in CLs and 2 new cars since July 2013
EQ:809 TU 777 EX 790 Now it's just garden time!

June 2017 update: All scores over 820, just pure gardening now.
Message 2 of 3
Regular Contributor

Re: If you only have 1 CC, 0 or 1% util?

Yes, I realize I have weaknesses in my credit history because I'm young, but I'm speaking strictly util-wise, would it be better for 0% or 1%?  I feel like the 796 is artifically high, and since most lenders don't use the TU98, I think the 1% is the better choice because EQ goes up and I'm assuming my TU04/EX may also have similiar changes.  I think the TU98 score is just skewing it a bit.


I'm wondering if anyone else has any experience in this area or if they agree it would be better to have the 1% when applying than a $0 balance.

Message 3 of 3