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HELP!: No Credit History / Score Plan of Action - Does this seem correct?


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Hi All,

First let me say thanks to you all for such a great board and resource...

I've lived/worked in the US for a little over 5 yrs and never used my SSN for anything other than work. Up until 3 months ago I had no/zero/zilcho credit and history. After being a member of a Credit Union (Navy Federal) for approx 5 yrs, they granted me a 2K Visa (Nov '07) card. It's obvious someone manually reviewed my application and took my banking history into account with them.

This month I tried to sign up for scorewatch, and was rejected because there was no score to watch! I did pull my 3in1 report, and spotted spotted $30 charge from NCO FIN (reported in 2005). Promptly disputed it and 4 days later rec'd letter that it will be deleted. Tho now I think I kinda regret it as even though it was an error, it would've given me a 3 yr history lol.

So I've decided to create and rev up my plan, so that by the time I do have a score (April/May '08?) it'll be decent. I'm aiming for 700+...

The luckiest thing I have in my favor, is that I don't actually need credit lines. I've always been and still remain comfortable with using cash, debit card or checks - "If I don't have the money, I don't buy it". I almost despise credit but realize it is a necessary evil to get by. So I may as well try to build and manipulate it while I can, and hopefully one day when I'm ready to purchase some real estate (not for at least 2 yrs+) I'll have a stellar rating.

My rationale is to try to apply for most apps now, so that when the history becomes available the hard inquiries won't hurt as much. Keep utilization to 10-20% (?), and just let the score grow for at least 6 months...

So far I have:

11/1/07 Visa unsecured $2K - 0 balance

1/8/08 Crown Jewellers reports $1500 - $30(?) balance

1/14/08 Approved for $1000 loan from NFCU - 12 mth term

this week will apply to CCCU for Mastercard hope to be approved at $1K (Rep said I would probably be approved for $500 or $1K)

NFCU denied me MC in December, so I was thinking of asking NFCU to reconsider my MC app...don't really need or want it, if CCCU approves...


- What happens to Hard Inquiries once a score becomes calculated?

- What should my card util be at? Should I spike it every 6 or 9 months? Maybe go into April with over 50% balance on both cards, then pay them all down to less 10% for the next month in order for point spiking...Or should I keep everything at below 20%?

- At 6 month point, once I actually have a score, besides BofA (I don't want them), what major bank credit card should I be seeking? 1 more card would make a total of 3 - do I need to aim for anymore?

- Is the Kay Jeweler trifecta suggested? Now or wait six months? a year? never?

- What, if anything, would you suggest I do once my score becomes available? I'm not so much concerned with quantity as I am with quality...But maybe I have the wrong idea?

- Anything else I should do now? Or in 6 mths?

- Anyone care to take a stab at what they think my score will be when it finally appears in April lol?

Thanks all!

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I am almost in the exact same boat as you, but 1 month ahead (I get my score in March, MAYBE Feb). You can see my FAKO's below, but my actually FICO's I wont know for sure until they push the new system through that ignores authorized users. Right now my EX has a 726 FICO because my girlfriends Crap One card of 2 years is reporting on it.

As for cards, I would recommend looking into Penfed and/or any other bank that issues cards that have the capability of increasing to high limits without needing to apply for a different card. My girlfriend has a crap one card that will not go above 3k and to get a higher limit with them she would need to apply for a different type of card. I personally just want to open cards where I will not reach the max limit in just a year or 2 and need to open another line of credit for more... just my preference though.

- What happens to Hard Inquiries once a score becomes calculated?

Nothing happens to them. They do not calculate into your FICO after 1 year, and do not calculate into your FAKA (which doesn't matter anyway) after 2 years.

- What should my card util be at?

10% or below is great. No need to spike it ever.

- What, if anything, would you suggest I do once my score becomes available? I'm not so much concerned with quantity as I am with quality...But maybe I have the wrong idea?

What you have now is great. You have the right idea. Quality is better. Just stick with the good banks like you have and you should be fine.

Perhaps others can take a stab at the other questions. I personally do not see a reason why you should open any unnecessary accounts. 3 quality cards should be great.

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Thanks! I was thinking of going the AU route, but don't really know anyone. I figured since my credit needs are not urgent I could try on my own.

I totally agree with you on the limit increase point, which is why I've stayed away from Cap1 and others. I want institutions that I can grow with. AFAIK, NFCU will increase cards up to 80K, I do not know about CCCU. Since that'll be 2 credit unions, I'd like my 3rd to be a major bank.

BTW, I truly do not think this new "fico" scoring is gonna happen. I think at most, what we may see, is certain mortgage lenders not taking the auth user acct into consideration...just mho.

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