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Is my credit score zero?

Your FICO® Scores can impact your loan interest rates, terms, approvals and more.
New Member

Is my credit score zero?

Received a secured Discover card and went on Discovers site to see my free credit score. It said it could not obtain a score from any bureau because I have no open credit or history. So do I have to start building from zero with the secured Discover card? Or does my credit score start at 600?

I went through chapter 7 and discharged in 2009, bankruptcy was just removed from my credit reports. Have had no credit since. Thanks
Message 1 of 6
5 REPLIES 5
Valued Contributor

Re: Is my credit score zero?


@Jkoziol wrote:
Received a secured Discover card and went on Discovers site to see my free credit score. It said it could not obtain a score from any bureau because I have no open credit or history. So do I have to start building from zero with the secured Discover card? Or does my credit score start at 600?

I went through chapter 7 and discharged in 2009, bankruptcy was just removed from my credit reports. Have had no credit since. Thanks

No, your credit score is not zero.  However, to be able to generate a credit score you need to satisfy three conditions:

 

What are the minimum requirements for a FICO score?

In order to receive a valid FICO® Score, the credit report must have:

  • At least one account opened for six months or more, and
  • At least one account that has been reported to the credit bureau within the past six months, and
  • No indication of deceased on the credit report (Please note, if you share an account with another person this may affect you if the other account holder is reported deceased).

Obviously the third one does not apply since you're presumably not deceased.  But assuming that you haven't used credit since filing BK7 in 2009,  the credit bureaus no longer have any data on you that can be used to calculate a score. Your previous credit accounts would have been deleted either because they were included in your bankruptcy, or have fallen off your record because of lack of use.

 

So in your case you'll need to have at least one account open and reporting to the credit bureaus for six months before a score will be available.





Message 2 of 6
New Member

Re: Is my credit score zero?

Thanks. So my credit score after 6 months would be determined by how much I used (more purchases the better?) the Discover card and on time payments?

Is there a credit score average for people in my situation start out with after 6 months with one secured card (used weekly for gas and other smaller purchases throughout the month and paid on time)? 500, 600?

Having more than one secured card during this 6 months would make a higher score (if used and paid on time) after 6 months? If so, about how much higher than with just one secured card?
Message 3 of 6
Valued Contributor

Re: Is my credit score zero?


@Jkoziol wrote:
Thanks. So my credit score after 6 months would be determined by how much I used (more purchases the better?) the Discover card and on time payments?

Is there a credit score average for people in my situation start out with after 6 months with one secured card (used weekly for gas and other smaller purchases throughout the month and paid on time)? 500, 600?

Having more than one secured card during this 6 months would make a higher score (if used and paid on time) after 6 months? If so, about how much higher than with just one secured card?

The major drivers for a credit score are on-time payments and the amount you owe on the card(s). See this article for details: 5 Factors that Determine a FICO Score

  So if you make your payment by the specified due date and keep your utilization low (ideally less than 8.9% of your credit limit) you should have a reasonable FICO score after six months. 

 

Typically the first FICO score generated averages between 670-690.  This assumes no late payments nor excessive credit balances.  The first time score can also be influenced by being added as an authorized user to a clean existing credit account.





Message 4 of 6
Super Contributor

Re: Is my credit score zero?


@Jkoziol wrote:
Thanks. So my credit score after 6 months would be determined by how much I used (more purchases the better?) the Discover card and on time payments?


Usage is not a factor in FICO scoring.  What matters are on-time payments and your reported balance at the time your score gets generated.  Your reported balance divided by your credit limit is your utilization.  If you keep that utilization percentage below 8.9% each month, you'll be maximizing your score with 1 card.

 

Again, your spend is irrelevant.  You could swipe the card one time for $5 or swipe it 100 times for a $20k spend.  In the end the reported balance at the time your score is generated is what matters and everything that leads up to that assuming all payments were made on time isn't relevant to FICO scoring.

 

 

Message 5 of 6
Valued Member

Re: Is my credit score zero?

If your Discover card is new, you won't see a score there until the first statement cuts.

I had the same message and called Discover since I knew the notice of no score was incorrect.  The CSR stated what I mentioned above.

 

Anything here https://www.creditscorecard.com/






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