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parrothead1
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Hello, 

I've not been here in several years. Things have been going just fine, or so I thought.   Some background - I've not missed a payment on any of my cards in over 5 years. I survived a stage 3 cancer diagnosis, treatment and paid all the medical bills without any going to collection. I have paid off my vehicle, paid cash for my house/property (have no real estate financing history), I have no student loans, no current installment loans, no collections, no judgements, 8 inquiries (2 of which are almost 2 years old),  and a grand total (as of today) of 4800ish in credit card debt. This debt is on two cards and both are pretty well maxed. I'm paying them down as quickly as I get the money.

 

 At the beginning of July my credit score was 580ish. Everything seemed to indicate that since, at the time, I had about 9500 in maxed cards that was what was keeping my score low.  I pulled my credit report and found a zombie credit card that is over 5 years old in the amount of 1700ish.  So six maxed cards and a single zombie debt over 5 years old and my score was 580. 

 

Here are my questions - What do you think will happen if I pay off the 1700 zombie debt? It seems like it got lost in the shuffle when I was so sick, but pre-diagnosis (June 2017).  I owe it, should i pay it and get rid of it? 

 

I'm sitting on a very small chunk of money that I could use to pay the 4800 down to about 3000. Should I equally divide it to some on both cards to get them off max utilization or put it all on one card to bring that card below 50% utilization? 

 

I have a synchrony bank store card (Lowes) that I use and pay off monthly. Up until yesterday the limit was 1000. Last night I received a notice that my limit has been dropped to my current balance 240, They cited the lack of real estate financing as one of the reasons. The other being the high utilization of my cards  Of course the paid off cards with 0 balance have not reported to the CRAs yet. So do I try to dispute that or do I pay it off or do I pay it down to a 10 balance and hope that when the CRAs get the updated information that the limit goes back up? 

 

I've used several of those credit simulators on the internet that show once the CRAs receive the new information my credit score should shoot up into the mid-700. Once that happens should I try to get a home equity loan to have the real estate financing? I hate to because I don't really need the money and it is a lot of work and will cost me more in the end to have the loan for a year then pay it off.  Is it worth it to have the loan in my credit file? I suppose having that will be the only thing that puts me over 800.

 

What say the board? 

 

Thanks

Parrothead

 

 

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I am assuming you defaulted on the "Zombie" credit card over 4 years ago?? If so, you should NOT pay it as all that will do is to update the entry to a "paid" collection. Try this:

https://whychat.me/GUIDEBOOK.html

https://whychat.me/SOL PROGRAM GUIDE.html

If the account is not deleted with the initial dispute letter to the CRAs-- then you can send the reporting CA this;

https://whychat.me/nottoca.html

 

If neither of these steps work then look to see when it will age off your reports and wait it out. The older the negative account is the less impact it will have on your scores.

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Others with more experience will probably have a lot more to add, but sounds like "lack of real estate financing" was just one reason.  I would say the main reasons were due to the lower score, the zombie debt, and the maxed cards.  Some banks are trimming credit lines due to the current economy, and they tend to start with accounts they deem "more at risk"

 

Also as to lack of real estate financing, there are members on this board who have scores well into the 800's who have no real estate financing.  

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Posted (edited)

The zombie account is not in collections. It is just sitting there with the OCs name. 

 

Another question, I'm in Maine which has an SOL of 6 years for open accounts. Does that mean for closed accounts the SOL is still 7 years? 

Edited by parrothead1
clairification
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The key event that's triggering your situation is any revolving debt for which the utility is over 70%, and to a lesser degree those at 50%-70%.  That's the most immediate thing to address. I'd push to get everything under 50%.  Under 30% would be much better.

 

The lack of a real estate secured tradeline is largely a red herring.  Yes, your credit score would be higher with one, but it's far from a make or break situation.  Handle every other credit factor first and then see if a modest boost from where you are then is sufficient to warrant some type of real estate loan.

 

Advice for the zombie cc depends upon the reporting specifics.  If it's sitting there with an adverse status of "charge off" and/or "collection", then paying it in full will help modestly (among other things, that improves your utilization ratios).  However, the large negative score impact from a paid collection is typically not much improved from an unpaid status.

 

Since they aren't aggressively engaging in collection activity, they might be amenable to "pay for delete", if contacted (I recommend a phone call, and making the offer only once you're connected with someone in collections who is authorized to discuss/negotiate the account.)  Contacting them does have the risk that you will kick off renewed collection effort.  Against that, I would wait to call them until you definitely have the resources to pay in full.

 

As far as Synchrony, it's most likely that you'll have to call to get the limit restored.  I'd advise waiting until you have resolved the worst of the revolving utilization problem by getting your cards under 70% of their limits.  (under 50% is better for this as well).

 

 

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Posted (edited)

Thanks. That is all what I thought, but wanted to make certain. I did gather updated credit reports from the annual free report. Still battling 20 year old addresses  (bang head) . So I'm once again writing letters for accurate personal information. Everything else is either obsolete (adding that to the letters) or will be obsolete on or about February 2023 - including the zombie. 

 

It truly is just sitting there. I'm sure I'll end up with some sort of aggressive CA within the next few months. Until then I'm just hopping it goes away quietly. 

 

PS I just used my bit I was sitting on to pay the personal card down to 40% utilization. I don't know if it matters but the last maxed card is a business card. 

Edited by parrothead1
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Something to keep in mind on the zombie is whether it is presently reporting with monthly updates.  If the last update was some years ago, then tread lightly or it WILL update with more current data and harm the score. 

 

Lack of real estate financing is something I have typically only seen with Vantage sKores...I don't recall seeing that on Fair Isaac models.  And, while the data has been limited on people using Vantage in decisioning, this could suggest a change, at least for Suckrony. 

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2 minutes ago, centex said:

Lack of real estate financing is something I have typically only seen with Vantage sKores...I don't recall seeing that on Fair Isaac models.  And, while the data has been limited on people using Vantage in decisioning, this could suggest a change, at least for Suckrony. 

 

Yes, Synchrony announced last year that they were migrating their credit evaluation to Vantage Score.  (There's much to suggest that Vantage Scores can be pulled by creditors for a much smaller fee)

 

Subsequent to that, Synchrony sold a large bond issue secured by customer account receivables, in which the credit evaluation of the underlying accounts was also Vantage based.

 

There's been nothing since that other issuers are following suit.  But FICO execs must be sweating a tad, nonetheless.

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1 hour ago, parrothead1 said:

PS I just used my bit I was sitting on to pay the personal card down to 40% utilization. I don't know if it matters but the last maxed card is a business card. 

 

If the business card doesn't report on your personal credit report, then it's not a factor in your FICO score nor how other creditors evaluate your creditworthiness.  It it reports, then from a credit evaluation perspective, it factors largely the same as any of your personal cards.

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21 minutes ago, hdporter said:

 

If the business card doesn't report on your personal credit report, then it's not a factor in your FICO score nor how other creditors evaluate your creditworthiness.  It it reports, then from a credit evaluation perspective, it factors largely the same as any of your personal cards.

It reports.

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36 minutes ago, centex said:

Something to keep in mind on the zombie is whether it is presently reporting with monthly updates.  If the last update was some years ago, then tread lightly or it WILL update with more current data and harm the score. 

 

Lack of real estate financing is something I have typically only seen with Vantage sKores...I don't recall seeing that on Fair Isaac models.  And, while the data has been limited on people using Vantage in decisioning, this could suggest a change, at least for Suckrony. 

It does seem to be reporting CO monthly.

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18 hours ago, parrothead1 said:

The zombie account is not in collections. It is just sitting there with the OCs name. 

 

Another question, I'm in Maine which has an SOL of 6 years for open accounts. Does that mean for closed accounts the SOL is still 7 years? 

 

Yes, the 7 years is the same. However, if this is a five year old debt in a state with a 6 year SOL, they can still sue you. I'd be more concerned with that.

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1 hour ago, legaleagle2012 said:

 

Yes, the 7 years is the same. However, if this is a five year old debt in a state with a 6 year SOL, they can still sue you. I'd be more concerned with that.

My plan is to just go ahead and pay the OC within the next couple weeks and get it taken care of. That way there are no surprises. 

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That works; that way you avoid the judge in the flannel shirt that stares at you with his one good eye and says, "Ayup, Cutie; you are in trouble now. Pet my dog, and cousin Buford will take you to the Clerk's office." LOL I live in good old New England, I know about these things. I've been to Maine, and went to Vermont regularly for about fifteen years. Don't go there.

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29 minutes ago, legaleagle2012 said:

That works; that way you avoid the judge in the flannel shirt that stares at you with his one good eye and says, "Ayup, Cutie; you are in trouble now. Pet my dog, and cousin Buford will take you to the Clerk's office." LOL I live in good old New England, I know about these things. I've been to Maine, and went to Vermont regularly for about fifteen years. Don't go there.

 

Still looking forward to our relocation to Massachusetts.  That said, after 30+ years in PA, this video is a decent representation of how things work there (or at least in Centralia)

 

 

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2 hours ago, legaleagle2012 said:

That works; that way you avoid the judge in the flannel shirt that stares at you with his one good eye and says, "Ayup, Cutie; you are in trouble now. Pet my dog, and cousin Buford will take you to the Clerk's office." LOL I live in good old New England, I know about these things. I've been to Maine, and went to Vermont regularly for about fifteen years. Don't go there.

Now, let's all hope and pray that nobody knocks on my door between now and the 21st of the month.

 

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Posted (edited)
37 minutes ago, parrothead1 said:

Now, let's all hope and pray that nobody knocks on my door between now and the 21st of the month.

 

Okay, it was bugging me, and then I started worrying so I wiped out everything and went ahead and had a check sent to the OC through my bill pay.  I'm pretty much broke, but have peace of mind.  I now have proof that it has been paid or attempted to be paid. I couldn't find my account number anywhere - even bought the MyFICO  report for 20. So hopefully they can find me by my name and the last four of my social. 

Edited by parrothead1
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On 7/13/2022 at 11:10 AM, parrothead1 said:

I have a synchrony bank store card (Lowes) that I use and pay off monthly. Up until yesterday the limit was 1000. Last night I received a notice that my limit has been dropped to my current balance 240, They cited the lack of real estate financing as one of the reasons. The other being the high utilization of my cards  Of course the paid off cards with 0 balance have not reported to the CRAs yet. So do I try to dispute that or do I pay it off or do I pay it down to a 10 balance and hope that when the CRAs get the updated information that the limit goes back up? 

Yes, I'm quoting myself from the beginning of the thread. I got to thinking about Hegemony's post today when the same thing happened to him with his synchrony account.  I was optimistically thinking that once all my cards report the new low balance it would be a cinch to get the Lowes card back to a decent limit.  Maybe not.  So, show of hands, I should close this if they don't put my CL back up, yes? 

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3 hours ago, parrothead1 said:

Yes, I'm quoting myself from the beginning of the thread. I got to thinking about Hegemony's post today when the same thing happened to him with his synchrony account.  I was optimistically thinking that once all my cards report the new low balance it would be a cinch to get the Lowes card back to a decent limit.  Maybe not.  So, show of hands, I should close this if they don't put my CL back up, yes? 

 

 

talk to them about restoring the limit but be ready to kick them to the curb. I didn't even bother calling and just closed mine but that is mainly because I no longer have a use for the lowes store card. If it was a card I benefit a lot from I might have fought harder.

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On 7/13/2022 at 11:10 PM, parrothead1 said:

...

 

Here are my questions - What do you think will happen if I pay off the 1700 zombie debt? It seems like it got lost in the shuffle when I was so sick, but pre-diagnosis (June 2017).  I owe it, should i pay it and get rid of it? 

 

I'm sitting on a very small chunk of money that I could use to pay the 4800 down to about 3000. Should I equally divide it to some on both cards to get them off max utilization or put it all on one card to bring that card below 50% utilization? 

 

I have a synchrony bank store card (Lowes) that I use and pay off monthly. Up until yesterday the limit was 1000. Last night I received a notice that my limit has been dropped to my current balance 240, They cited the lack of real estate financing as one of the reasons. The other being the high utilization of my cards  Of course the paid off cards with 0 balance have not reported to the CRAs yet. So do I try to dispute that or do I pay it off or do I pay it down to a 10 balance and hope that when the CRAs get the updated information that the limit goes back up? 

...

 

 

OCs rarely will accept a pay-for-delete.  I doubt the OC will be suing you after 6 years.  Paying them off will likely update the tradeline and cause major damage to your credit score and perceived creditworthiness.  At a current 580, however, I'm not sure it could get that much worse.

 

I'd close Stinkrony.  They suck.  It's extremely unlikely they will restore your credit limit in the near future.  They have probably noticed your high utilization and gone into paranoia.  The reason they gave you for the decrease was pure 100% bull💩.

 

With both cards pretty much maxed out, I'd probably pay down the one with the highest APR faster.

 

 

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8 hours ago, PotO said:

 

OCs rarely will accept a pay-for-delete.  I doubt the OC will be suing you after 6 years.  Paying them off will likely update the tradeline and cause major damage to your credit score and perceived creditworthiness.  At a current 580, however, I'm not sure it could get that much worse.

 

I'd close Stinkrony.  They suck.  It's extremely unlikely they will restore your credit limit in the near future.  They have probably noticed your high utilization and gone into paranoia.  The reason they gave you for the decrease was pure 100% bull💩.

 

With both cards pretty much maxed out, I'd probably pay down the one with the highest APR faster.

 

 

I went ahead and paid it earlier this week.  No results yet.  Since I typed out the starting post to this thread I've paid off a lot of debt. I'm broke now, but feel better - weight lifted and all that. I'm waiting to see the results of all the 0 balances to decide on my next move. 

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45 minutes ago, parrothead1 said:

I went ahead and paid it earlier this week.  No results yet.  Since I typed out the starting post to this thread I've paid off a lot of debt. I'm broke now, but feel better - weight lifted and all that. I'm waiting to see the results of all the 0 balances to decide on my next move. 

 

Being debt-free is great!  

 

Give it a month or so for everything to update and then decide what's next.

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