Disclaimer: I am not a financial adviser! Do your own research about how credit cards work.
I had to do my own research when I was paying off debt and chose to embark on the never-ending journey of becoming financially literate. That’s how I discovered the topic being covered in this blog post and that’s why I’m sharing this information with you. Most people are not aware of this at all – I sure wasn’t!
The most basic info most people hear about credit cards is that whenever they use them, pay off the balance in full each month. The problem with that is: That’s NOT one of the major factors that impacts whether your credit score increases or plummets into a dark pit of oblivion!
Here’s some vital info you should know about your credit card usage that most people don’t know about:
Determining Factors of Your Credit Score:
- Credit inquiries (10% of your credit score)
- Total accounts (10% of your credit score)
- Age of accounts (15% of your credit score)
- Payment history (35% of your credit score)
- Utilization (30% of your credit score)
Credit card companies (Visa, Mastercard, AMEX, Capital One, etc) are watching every month to see how much of your credit you’re using. The more of your credit you use, the worse the impact on your credit score.
If you have a credit card with a limit of $1,000 and you max out your credit card, BUT you pay it all off that same month, all the credit card issuer cares about is that fact that you utilized the ENTIRE credit limit. Your credit card issuer then reports to the credit bureau that you used all of your credit limit and that is what has a negative impact on your credit score.
Credit Utilization Ratio Chart:
0% – 9% = Excellent
10% – 29% = Good
30% – 49% = Fair
50% – 74% = Poor
75% and Up = Very Bad
So, as you can see from the credit utilization chart above, ideally you’d want to keep your credit limit usage to 29% (Example: Use no more than $290 if your credit limit is $1,000) of your credit limit if you want to keep your credit score in the ‘Excellent‘ to ‘Good‘ range and increase your credit score faster.
Statement Closing Date vs Payment Due Date:
Payment Due Date: The due date of your monthly payment (if you have any balance owing specified by the credit card company, you’ll either pay the full balance or the minimum payment – or ideally more than the minimum payment).
Statement Closing Date: It’s the last day in the billing cycle. All transactions made between your last closing date and your current closing date are listed. The credit card issuer calculates and adds finance charges to your balance. It’s the point in time when the credit card company reports important information to the credit bureaus such as your credit utilization ratio, balance owing, etc.
Please Note: If you do make your payment before the statement closing date, that’s fine because it will reduce the balance that the credit card company reports to the credit card bureau.
Lastly, every month you are in control of your credit utilization, so be smart, make good choices and use it to your advantage! The lower you keep your credit utilization, the faster you can increase your credit score! Know what your credit score is so that you can improve it, if need be. Stay focused!
Use your credit card – Don’t let it use you! 😁✨👍
I hope you got some real gems out of this blog post! I hope it helps you or someone you know! Since learning this information for myself, I definitely have a different mindset when it comes to using my credit card!
Leave a comment below letting me know your thoughts about this post! Have you ever heard of a credit utilization ratio before? Did you find this info helpful?
Remember to share this blog post and also listen to new episodes of the Simply Chrissy Podcast (www.anchor.fm/simply-chrissy) every Monday & Thursday!
Love and light 💖😃,