• Go to page :
  • 1 2
  • Text Only
Voting History
rated:
Most posts I am finding are about raising a bad score. I am looking at how to make a good score even better:

So I've never really been too concerned with my credits score. I've always had a good one - and by that I mean I've never really had a problem getting credit, mortgage, etc.
I did my free report about 6-8 years ago and things looked pretty good. I had identified a couple of strange accounts that seemed to be old mobile phone carriers or something and got those cleaned off.
In the past I've never been too concerned with the numbers.

I just recently signed up at a credit monitoring site and came out with the following:

Transunion 740. It gave me A ratings in all categories, but a C in these:
Hard Credit Inquiries (I have 4 on record)
Average age of open credit lines (~5 years)
Total accounts (13)

A 740 credit score is not horrible, and for the VantageScore it gave me a 915 (A).
I was most concerned with the "Auto Insurance Score" which while showing 815 listed my insurability as "Poor"

I recently opened quite a few new cards over the past 2-3 months for purposes of a lot of new business travel, combined with some good reward offers.
3x Chase cards
1x Citi Card
1x AMEX Card

I am sure that these are affecting the "C" scores above.

I'd like to know how concerned I should be with the Auto score, as well as what I can do other than wait to improve my score even more.
If I need to wait - how long should I expect - in other words, what do the numbers above need to be to better my score.

I appreciate all (constructive) advice!

Member Summary
Most Recent Posts
this is bad advice. like cpaynter said, you will have too many cards with balances. buckastic if you're doing htis eve... (more)

MDfive21 (Nov. 10, 2012 @ 7:44p) |

When I refinanced my house a couple years ago with Amerisave, I found out to get the best rate with the lowest closing c... (more)

dirtrat (Nov. 10, 2012 @ 11:40p) |

It may not work any more, but I read on creditboards.com that getting daily updates from a credit monitoring service cou... (more)

filmy (Dec. 24, 2012 @ 8:04p) |

Thanks for visiting FatWallet.com. Join for free to remove this ad.

BenH said:   what do the numbers above need to be to better my scoreZero inquiries would be nice

Sleep on it. Yes, really.

I assume that both of the responses above are pointing to the fact that only time will lessen the impact (i.e. better the score).
I figure that to be the case, which is why I ask for some specifics as well if the solution is only to wait.

I see the earliest pull listed is from January 2011 and all 4 pulls are from Chase!

How long does it take for a hard pull to go off the record? And why did Chase find it necessary to do so many hard pulls when they should know my credit history already?
Is there any way to get a pull removed?

Why do no pulls show from Citi or AMEX? I was an AMEX Holder already, but not a Citi holder (at least not for quite a few years).

thanks

What will having a score higher than your current 740 net you?

Quikboy4 said:   What will having a score higher than your current 740 net you?

I'm not sure...as I mention above I was most concerned about the Auto Insurance impact showing as "poor"

Other than bragging rights, I don't really know how high my score needs to be.

I plan to possibly re-fi and/or get a new mortgage over the next 6-12 months, but I think my current score is probably good enough for that.

You opened a lot of credit recently. Expect to take a fair ding for that. Let it be, as they age your rating will go back up.

in general you want utilization to be near zero. on myficoforums, teh consensus is that for max score you should have one account reporting between 1% and 9% and all other accounts reporting $0 balance.

all those new accounts are hurting you in 2 ways. first you get a ding for opening new accounts, second you get a ding for lower average age of accounts (AAoA). the longer your accounts are open the higher your score. you get some points for your oldest account, and some points for the average age.

over time your new accounts will begin to help, rather than hurt. usually you'll be back to normal at 6 months and they will begin to increase your score at the 1 year anniversary.

look into am3x b@ckd@ting on creditboards.com
read up on how fico scoring works here.

Thanks MD - My utilization is good (under 9%).

I understand about the 2 negative ways that you mention for the new accounts - and as everyone else seems to indicate, only time will raise this up again.

I looked up the AMEX term you listed - I'm not sure it applies to me. I have been an AMEX holder since 1999, and I think that is reflected on my accounts - so based on what I read there isn't much else for me to do in that area I believe.

I am done applying for new credit for now anyway I think...and will be sure that if I plan to I am more careful to ensure that there isn't a hard pull involved.

I'm still interested in why my Auto insurance score is so low...I will have to find out more about that...



MDfive21 said:   in general you want utilization to be near zero. on myficoforums, teh consensus is that for max score you should have one account reporting between 1% and 9% and all other accounts reporting $0 balance.

all those new accounts are hurting you in 2 ways. first you get a ding for opening new accounts, second you get a ding for lower average age of accounts (AAoA). the longer your accounts are open the higher your score. you get some points for your oldest account, and some points for the average age.

over time your new accounts will begin to help, rather than hurt. usually you'll be back to normal at 6 months and they will begin to increase your score at the 1 year anniversary.

look into am3x b@ckd@ting on creditboards.com
read up on how fico scoring works here.

have you tried creditkarma.com's credit simulator?
you can play around with different variables to see what it thinks will give you a better score.

On a side note, credit score doesn't really have an impact on the auto insurance score.
I just did an AOR, which temporarily dropped my TU from 760 to 730 (increase in inqs, increase in available CL, increase in credit utilization). My auto insurance score didn't change.


I find it odd that you have 15 accounts, and CK.com gave you a C.
I have 31 accounts, and have an A it's probably the "mix" of types of accounts that i have

Drive a Crown V and fill with H & B. FICO goes through the roof!

You have to give it time and let the dust settle from recent apps. 740 is pretty good, you may gain 10-20 points over the next couple of years of good history and then again. 800 is hard to get, had it once and then credit crunching started - many of my card limits were cut in 1/3rd - nothing I did just creditors trying to show face. That hurt.

I just found the simulator you speak of. I tried to up the positive things (although there was really nothing that I could improve because it doesn't let you remove credit pulls, only add).
No matter what I did that seemed positive, it would not show my score about 740. If however I did some negatives, and then on top of those added some positives, it trended upwards.
So, I guess it is telling me that there isn't much I can do....

The total accounts reads the following when I drilled down:

Total Accounts 13
Open Accounts 4
Closed Accounts 9

So I think it is the closed accounts that are hurting me. I think I need to request my credit report again - because I don't know how I have 9 closed accounts. I think I cancelled one credit card 2-3 years ago, and the only other accounts would be perhaps Cell phone providers, that I switched carriers - do those count as closed accounts?

I think that might be the biggest thing hurting me right now, so I should look into that. I am looking at a report from 2010 where it shows I had a bunch of closed accounts, but those are almost 10 years old - I don't know why they are still showing/affecting my score (if they are).

imbatman said:   have you tried creditkarma.com's credit simulator?
you can play around with different variables to see what it thinks will give you a better score.

On a side note, credit score doesn't really have an impact on the auto insurance score.
I just did an AOR, which temporarily dropped my TU from 760 to 730 (increase in inqs, increase in available CL, increase in credit utilization). My auto insurance score didn't change.


I find it odd that you have 15 accounts, and CK.com gave you a C.
I have 31 accounts, and have an A it's probably the "mix" of types of accounts that i have

I just looked at some of the details on CreditKarma and it seems to indicate that my score is low because I ONLY have 13 accounts!

It says a score of C is between 11-15 accounts, B 16-21, and A 21+

This is why you have an A with 31 accounts.

This is just totally counter-intuitive to me, they state:

"Total accounts is another measure of your creditworthiness. Consumers with more credit accounts generally have better credit scores because it means more lenders are willing to grant credit. This metric represents the total number of accounts listed on your credit report. A breadth of different account types is indicative of good credit."

So according to this I should go and open up a bunch of new accounts (which will negatively impact me due to reasons above) just to get the number of accounts up?!

This seems very strange to me - as CreditKarma makes its money from the advertising of the card apps on its site.

What is legitimate?

BenH said:   So according to this I should go and open up a bunch of new accounts (which will negatively impact me due to reasons above) just to get the number of accounts up?!Right. More accounts will help your score, but new accounts will hurt. This is why the best advice is to put all your research in a file, tuck it into the desk drawer, and forget about it. Pay your bills on time, apply for credit when you need it, check your credit report from time to time, and the score will take care of itself.

is your AMEX card a "real" AMEX card? If not get one. It wont help your credit out immediately but it will have a long term impact on your scores by being able to backdate other AMEX cards you get to your original join date. This helps keep your average age of accounts high.

dcwilbur said:   BenH said:   So according to this I should go and open up a bunch of new accounts (which will negatively impact me due to reasons above) just to get the number of accounts up?!Right. More accounts will help your score, but new accounts will hurt. This is why the best advice is to put all your research in a file, tuck it into the desk drawer, and forget about it. Pay your bills on time, apply for credit when you need it, check your credit report from time to time, and the score will take care of itself.

Agreed.
The only thing I wish I'd done differently was get more cards when I was 18-21 (I opened 3, a VISA, a MC, an AMEX - all still open). One thing that drags my score down is average age of accounts, which is around 3.5 years.
Your score might go up if you have more credit available to you, but by opening them, your score will go down (inquires and lower age of accounts), but in 6 months your score should be higher, in 2 years, it will be higher (assuming you don't do anything stupid)

Not sure what is real and not. The one I have had for 13 years was a Blue (the original Blue card, that was then converted to Blue Cash at some point).
I *just* got a Platinum card for the travel benefits.

Don't worry about it , it's not a SAT score

Is it worth applying for a few more cards to get to the 16 level (a "B" rating) now since I already have some hard pulls this year?

That way a year from now all those hard pulls aren't affecting me and I have extended the line?

I really see no reason why I (or anyone with *good* credit) would be applying for more credit other than to take advantage of points deals, etc.
I guess I can see the logic of "well you have 500,000 in credit with 30 different agencies and you haven't abused it" as a good thing...but I'm surprised that they don't factor in the negative aspect of that as well (as in why did you need so much credit) or the alternative of - "I don't need that much credit, but what I do have I have managed properly."

thanks for the good info...

imbatman said:   dcwilbur said:   BenH said:   So according to this I should go and open up a bunch of new accounts (which will negatively impact me due to reasons above) just to get the number of accounts up?!Right. More accounts will help your score, but new accounts will hurt. This is why the best advice is to put all your research in a file, tuck it into the desk drawer, and forget about it. Pay your bills on time, apply for credit when you need it, check your credit report from time to time, and the score will take care of itself.

Agreed.
The only thing I wish I'd done differently was get more cards when I was 18-21 (I opened 3, a VISA, a MC, an AMEX - all still open). One thing that drags my score down is average age of accounts, which is around 3.5 years.
Your score might go up if you have more credit available to you, but by opening them, your score will go down (inquires and lower age of accounts), but in 6 months your score should be higher, in 2 years, it will be higher (assuming you don't do anything stupid)

Credit is a tool. You have good credit and no reason to use extra credit right now. Time will age your accounts and hard pulls will drop. Just be responsible and you will continue to have good credit

Charge several thousand dollars to your cards each month, pay off those charges IN FULL when the bills comes due, repeat for 6+ months. You should see a VERY NICE boost in score at the end of that period.

This is very easy to accomplish if you do lots of business travel (by air requiring you to stay in hotels), charged to your own cards, where the expenses are reimbursed by your employer (so that you have the $$$ to pay off this bills upon arrival).

TheDiggler said:   Charge several thousand dollars to your cards each month, pay off those charges IN FULL when the bills comes due, repeat for 6+ months. You should see a VERY NICE boost in score at the end of that period.

This will do nothing to your score other than lower it during 6 months because of increased credit utilization.
What you suggest is no different (w.r.t. FICO scoring) than charging several thousand dollars once and then paying minimum due each month for 6 months.

Powza said:   TheDiggler said:   Charge several thousand dollars to your cards each month, pay off those charges IN FULL when the bills comes due, repeat for 6+ months. You should see a VERY NICE boost in score at the end of that period.

This will do nothing to your score other than lower it during 6 months because of increased credit utilization.
What you suggest is no different (w.r.t. FICO scoring) than charging several thousand dollars once and then paying minimum due each month for 6 months.


in theory, it could possibly increase your score after 6 months. But only if the CC company decides to raise your limits based on usage which would increase your available credit and decrease your utilization.

thanks for the input all - after some more posts and reading I found out that these scores from CK are FAKO scores and not the real FICO scores.

I went ahead and retrieved my real scores from the companies directly and they range from 793-915.

At that rate, I am not worried at all and am convinced that the CK site is making things appear worse than they are in an effort to sell you services.

I appreciate everyone's feedback.

FICO tops out at 850. Your 915 is probably a VantageScore (TransUnion). And Experian no longer has a relationship with FICO so you can't have gotten a true FICO from them either.

I was just looking into this as I was confused.

I signed directly into TransUnion for the score - why would they give me a VantageScore instead of a true TransUnion score? And how would I go about getting a legitimate TU score?

I am a bit confused as to what is a "true FICO"

I understand that each of the 3 agencies has their own report, as well as they all combined to create Vantage.

But what agency gives you a real FICO score? And which is the score/report that lenders will actually look at?

Thanks!

satchelsofgold said:   FICO tops out at 850. Your 915 is probably a VantageScore (TransUnion). And Experian no longer has a relationship with FICO so you can't have gotten a true FICO from them either.

FICO is just an algorithm. Fair Isaac looks at the data from the three bureaus, applies its algorithm, and gives you a score. Competitors (VantageScore, Experian, etc.) have their own algorithms. They will all look at your actual credit data from the three bureaus, but the resulting score will vary because they all have slightly different methodologies.

I'm happy with the CK score. It gives you a good idea of where you stand and it shows you the trend over time. That's really all you need.

Don't close your accounts even you don't use them (unless there's a monthly or annual fee to consider). You hard inquiries will wear off after a year and be gone in two. Since you are already hit this year, might as well get some more cards to boost your total limit.

satchelsofgold said:   FICO is just an algorithm. Fair Isaac looks at the data from the three bureaus, applies its algorithm, and gives you a score. Competitors (VantageScore, Experian, etc.) have their own algorithms. They will all look at your actual credit data from the three bureaus, but the resulting score will vary because they all have slightly different methodologies.

I'm happy with the CK score. It gives you a good idea of where you stand and it shows you the trend over time. That's really all you need.


So where do you get the original FICO algorithm score from? Or is Equifax the real one? Equifax is seemingly the one myFICO gives you...

You don't. The credit bureaus keep them algorithms secret. That's why there's such variance and the FAKOs also vary.

Get one of your older family members to add you as an authorized user to their oldest credit card account (that's always in good standing). That should boost your average age of accounts.

BenH said:   Quikboy4 said:   What will having a score higher than your current 740 net you?

I'm not sure...as I mention above I was most concerned about the Auto Insurance impact showing as "poor"

Other than bragging rights, I don't really know how high my score needs to be.

I plan to possibly re-fi and/or get a new mortgage over the next 6-12 months, but I think my current score is probably good enough for that.


I hear from a guy at work that you were riding with someone who was clocked doing 108mph in a 70mph zone.

Have you felt reckless lately?

I've been trying to pay all of my CC balances in full the day before the statement is cut. The idea is to reduce my number of accounts with balances. My score has jumped about 50 points in the month or so I've been doing this.

Chris.

BenH said:   

So where do you get the original FICO algorithm score from?


you can buy scores on myfico.com
if you can get in to PSECU, they give you a free EX fico score monthly
walmart CC
there may be others, but the easiest is to just pay for it on myfico.com
troll creditboards and myfico forums for ideas.

eta: Digital CU

Powza said:   TheDiggler said:   Charge several thousand dollars to your cards each month, pay off those charges IN FULL when the bills comes due, repeat for 6+ months. You should see a VERY NICE boost in score at the end of that period.

This will do nothing to your score other than lower it during 6 months because of increased credit utilization.
What you suggest is no different (w.r.t. FICO scoring) than charging several thousand dollars once and then paying minimum due each month for 6 months.
The process above gave me a MASSIVE boost in my score (was racking up $8K - $10K/month in T&L charges for 6+ consecutive months to my personal CC's, paying off the bills in full upon being reimbursed for the T&L expenses). This was over 5 years ago though, so maybe scoring models have changed since then. I'm still of the opinion that if you have large payments (several thousand dollars) posting to your credit report on a monthly basis, after 6+ months of that it should boost your score.

*EDIT* What I've suggested is indeed different than charging several thousand dollars once and then paying minimum due each month for 6 months, since the minimum due only shows a SMALL monthly payment posting to your credit report. My suggestion is specifically based on having a LARGE monthly *payment* post to your credit report for 6+ months (not mainitaing a large BALANCE for 6+ months).

I'm confused -

are you suggesting I charge a lot and then pay it off each month?

or

are you suggesting I charge a lot and then pay it off each month even before the due date?

I charge on average $2-3K a month, more on heavy travel months.

All my CC bills are always paid off IN FULL - every month.

So, unless you are suggesting I somehow pay them off even before the due date - I'm not sure...?

theres no need to charge a lot and pay it off to "build credit"
The technique of paying before the statement closes is so the statement balance isnt reported to the bureaus, but you have no need to game that.

Thats for people who are charging huge amounts per month but dont want the credit report to show it

Q: How do I make a good score better?
A: Lots of lube.

freejunkmail said:   Don't close your accounts even you don't use them (unless there's a monthly or annual fee to consider). You hard inquiries will wear off after a year and be gone in two. Since you are already hit this year, might as well get some more cards to boost your total limit.
I agree, never close. Just keep in safe in the freezer. (yes... freezer)...
I have done that over the years (10-14 years) and now my score is very respectable on the higher side.

Skipping 16 Messages...
It may not work any more, but I read on creditboards.com that getting daily updates from a credit monitoring service could cause "hard" inquiries to disappear more quickly than usual: the credit reporting agency would only keep track of a certain number of inquires, so the "hard" ones would be displaced by the "soft" ones from the monitoring service.

Another thing that would help is to occasionally get credit line increases on the credit cards you just got, particularly if you can manage to get the increase without triggering an inquiry, which can be tricky. The threads at http://www.fatwallet.com/forums/finance/474865/ and http://www.fatwallet.com/forums/finance/1106208/ have some tips on that.



Disclaimer: By providing links to other sites, FatWallet.com does not guarantee, approve or endorse the information or products available at these sites, nor does a link indicate any association with or endorsement by the linked site to FatWallet.com.

Thanks for visiting FatWallet.com. Join for free to remove this ad.

TRUSTe online privacy certification

While FatWallet makes every effort to post correct information, offers are subject to change without notice.
Some exclusions may apply based upon merchant policies.
© 1999-2014