Paying off a credit card doesn't usually hurt your credit scores—just the opposite, in fact. It can take a month or two for paid-off balances to be reflected in your score, but reducing credit card debt typically results in a score boost eventually, as long as your other credit accounts are in good standing.
Credit utilization — the portion of your credit limits that you are currently using — is a significant factor in credit scores. It is one reason your credit score could drop a little after you pay off debt, particularly if you close the account.
If you're already close to maxing out your credit cards, your credit score could jump 10 points or more when you pay off credit card balances completely. If you haven't used most of your available credit, you might only gain a few points when you pay off credit card debt.
It's better to pay off your credit card than to keep a balance. It's best to pay a credit card balance in full because credit card companies charge interest when you don't pay your bill in full every month.
Having accounts open with a credit card company will not hurt your credit score, but having zero balances will not prove to lenders that you are creditworthy and will repay a loan. Lenders want to make sure you repay, and that you will also pay interest.
Despite what you may have heard through the grapevine, it's always better to pay off your entire balance — or credit debt — immediately. Not only will this save you time and money, but it'll reflect well on your credit score.
Pros of paying your credit card off in full
You'll avoid paying interest if you pay your credit card balance off in full each month by the due date. Establish a better credit score: Using your credit card and repaying your balance will help you establish a good payment history.
FICO credit scores, the industry standard for sizing up credit risk, range from 300 to a perfect 850—with 670 to 739 labeled “good,” 740-799 “very good” and 800 to 850 “exceptional.” A 700 score places you right in the middle of the good range, but still slightly below the average credit score of 711.
In fact, it could hurt them. Credit utilization is the second most important factor in credit scoring. The lower your utilization rate, also called balance-to-limit ratio or utilization ratio, the better.
A 700 credit score meets the minimum requirements for most mortgage lenders, so it's possible to purchase a house when you're in that range. However, lenders look at more than just your credit score to determine your eligibility, so having a 700 credit score won't guarantee approval.
Experts say you need a minimum credit score of 620 to be approved for a conventional mortgage loan. As a result, a credit score of 790 should make a mortgage approval highly likely.
699 credit score mortgage loan options
A conventional mortgage usually requires a minimum credit score of 620. This means that with a score of 699, you have a high probability of being approved for a mortgage loan.
Your FICO® Score falls within a range, from 740 to 799, that may be considered Very Good. A 750 FICO® Score is above the average credit score. Borrowers with scores in the Very Good range typically qualify for lenders' better interest rates and product offers.
FICO® score ranges vary — they can range from 300 to 850 or 250 to 900, depending on the scoring model — but higher scores can indicate that you may be less risky to lenders.
If you have been using credit for only six months or a year, it's unrealistic to expect a score in the high 700s. Still, it is possible to establish excellent credit — a score of 800 or higher, for example — in your 20s.
Our recommendation is to prioritize paying down significant debt while making small contributions to your savings. Once you've paid off your debt, you can then more aggressively build your savings by contributing the full amount you were previously paying each month toward debt.
Making more than one payment each month on your credit cards won't help increase your credit score. But, the results of making more than one payment might.
Payment history — whether you pay on time or late — is the most important factor of your credit score making up a whopping 35% of your score. That's more than any one of the other four main factors, which range from 10% to 30%.
To purchase a $300K house, you may need to make between $50,000 and $74,500 a year. This is a rule of thumb, and the specific salary will vary depending on your credit score, debt-to-income ratio, the type of home loan, loan term, and mortgage rate.
Your FICO® Score falls within a range, from 740 to 799, that may be considered Very Good. A 747 FICO® Score is above the average credit score. Borrowers with scores in the Very Good range typically qualify for lenders' better interest rates and product offers.
While you don't need a perfect 850 credit score to get the best mortgage rates, there are general credit score requirements you will need to meet in order to take out a mortgage. Prospective home buyers should aim to have credit scores of 760 or greater to qualify for the best interest rates on mortgages.
About 21.8% of America has a credit score higher than 800 points. If you have a credit score of 800, it likely means that you manage debt well and never miss a loan payment. This makes you an ideal borrower and gives you access to more offers and lower interest rates.