Do you have a need for credit in the next 12 months? For example, buying a car? Or getting a credit card that might be hard to be approved for?
What is the age of your oldest account? (Open or closed)
You will get the most FICO scoring points by paying it down to under 8.99%. Some lenders, however, will require that you continue to make the same monthly payment. That will in effect cause you to pay the loan off within four months of the paydown.
My advice is to wait on paying it down until two months before you need the scoring points (maybe 2 and 1/2 months). Then you will get a big boost. Apply for the car loan -- you will get better terms because of the score boost. You will lose those points after the new loan appears on your report, but you will have achieved your goal which is to get favorable terms on the car.
Sure. As long as you are confident that the monthly payments won't cause it to pay off before you need the score boost.