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Credit Card Balance vs. Overall Credit

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Is your credit score better/worse/not affected if you spread your revolving debt over all your credit cards (I have 5) or if you pay them off one at a time?

Example: I have five credit cards that are almost maxed out. I can finally pay off over 50% of each of them which should increase my score considerably. Would it be better for me to pay two of them all of the way off and leave a high balance on two or pay them all down equally?

Thank you,


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You have the right idea; pay all of them down at the same time to get the balance below the 50% mark - lower if you can, prime Utilization would be below 30% per account.

Utilization affects 30% of the credit scoring so if you divide the balance by the credit limit you will see what the utilization is per account.

Example: $5,000 credit limit card w/ $4,000 balance = 80% Utilization.

Don't close accounts behind you, this will just shrink the available credit limit to balance ratios, it is better to have a several accounts with balances than it is to have a few maxed out.

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I'm not CERTAIN, but I believe FICO scoring will look at both overall % utilization and any MAXIMUM account utilization. I believe it is best to try to even them out. How many points it's worth ? Don't know.

Well, I see I crossed kb's post "in the mail".

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