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To pay off or not to pay off?

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Established Member

To pay off or not to pay off?

I've heard so many mixed pieces of advice. 

 

Is it truly better to - 

Utilize 30% balances to boost credit? Pay down, or pay in full monthly? 

Use another percentage util and (pay down, or pay in full monthly?) 

 

Right now I am working on paying off my cards, and I'm wondering if I should PIF - or pay down to 30% (or another percentage?) 

What will help me acquire the most credit score points? 

 

 

 

 

Message 1 of 16
15 REPLIES 15
Super Contributor

Re: To pay off or not to pay off?

PIF all cards, let one card report a statement balance between 1-8.9% and then PIF that. That’s the most optimum score recipe (with lots of recommendations to only let $5 or so report as well). All other cards would have to be paid before the statement cuts so they cut $0 statements. 

 

The benefits though are minimal and AZEO is only really recommended if you’re trying to optimize for a mortgage or another big application. 

 

The most reasonable way to use your cards is to keep utilization under 28.9% on a single card and 8.9% on all of them. 



01/2019:
10/2019:

Hover over my cards to see my limits!
Goal cards: Cash+, Freedom.
Message 2 of 16
Regular Contributor

Re: To pay off or not to pay off?

Best way to boost is AZEO (All Zero Except One). You want all of your CCs reporting a 0% utili except one of them, which should report more than 0% but less than 8.9%. 

 

For general use though, just get in the habit of PIF. Its better and you will avoid interest. Carrying balances requires some micromanagment if you want to avoid interest/pay minimally. 








Message 3 of 16
Frequent Contributor

Re: To pay off or not to pay off?

If you are currently not seeking more credit, loans, etc. Keep uti low on all, or AZEO, and PIF every month after the statement cuts. If you want max scores before apping, micromanage AZEO and 1% on one.
$1,000 is a lot to owe, yet little to have.
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Message 4 of 16
Established Member

Re: To pay off or not to pay off?

How can I find out when my statement cuts?

Message 5 of 16
Frequent Contributor

Re: To pay off or not to pay off?

When they send you the bill. Smiley Tongue
$1,000 is a lot to owe, yet little to have.
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Message 6 of 16
Established Member

Re: To pay off or not to pay off?

All of my statements are electronic - is there some verbiage I should be looking for? 

Message 7 of 16
Frequent Contributor

Re: To pay off or not to pay off?

When your statement is issued either paper or electronic, that's the cut. Try getting your payments in before your account rolls, on my Chase it's my Statement Date. Usually it'll be a few days after your previous months due date, my Chase due date is the 2nd for the previous statement, and my statements get issued on the 5th. So to beat the 5th statement cut, I try to make sure all payments are in about 3 business days prior, so when it reports, it (hopefully) reports 0, or at least a lower balance (I tend to PIF before statement issued so it reports 0).
$1,000 is a lot to owe, yet little to have.
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Message 8 of 16
Established Member

Re: To pay off or not to pay off?

I see this on one of mine - is that a good date to go off of? I'd want to pay it off before this date? 

 

Statement Balance Closing date March 6, 2019

Message 9 of 16
Frequent Contributor

Re: To pay off or not to pay off?

Yes, March 6th is when they issue your new statement, so to get them to report a lower balance and help increase score, pay as much as you can before that date and make no additional charges until after it. So your next statement cut would be April 6th, pay on April 3rd or 4th. If you can pay it off in full, do it, and don't use it again until the 7th. You'll pay no interest on it and it will report as a 0 balance. If you always PIF before that date, you will never pay interest and it'll boost your scores.

Edit: it can help to make multiple payments a month to work it around your income and keep it down.
$1,000 is a lot to owe, yet little to have.
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Message 10 of 16
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