Are credit karma scores higher or lower

How does using zero credits affect creditworthiness?

First off, FICO doesn't disclose the exact metrics of its credit scoring algorithm, so anyone who tells you they can answer this question accurately is lying to you or violating their NDA at Fair Isaac Corporation. However, some general things are publicly known.

The availment usually leads to a very minor Your credit score will suffer unless you have a relatively high occupancy (significant hits start above 25% of a high credit limit) or a very high credit score. The history of this use is insignificant (or even maintained); only the time of use. However, someone using their cards will use a specific point in time in a typical month.

For example, when I use the Credit Karma Credit Score Simulator (no confirmation intended or implied), my (very high) credit score fluctuates 30 points between optimal and 20% occupancy. For me, around 5% seems to be optimal. There is roughly a 10 point swing between 0 and 5% (0 is slightly lower).

But I want to emphasize: This only matters because I no negative results on my report, a very high total credit limit, and a long history. Nothing negative at all. My credit score fluctuates significantly in the 700 to 800 range on a regular basis for no particular reason other than the curiosities of the algorithm and random timing.

I would suggest that the answer is, as long as both twins had good credit history, sufficient total credit, and sufficient credit history, both would have similar Results and would be for similar Loans eligible.

I would also notice that there is one huge Difference to the actual "score" used by the bank / etc. there. based on what you are requesting. When you apply for a car loan, you don't have the same actual score as you would for a credit card or mortgage. Many of these lenders have theirs own proprietary algorithms, and even if they don't have FICO, they give multiple ratings depending on what the applicant needs. A mortgage lender or car lender is much less interested in your revolving balance than a credit card company, which if you've been out of credit cards in a long time and suddenly asked for a card, may see you as a risk that would be a sign that you are about to be laid off (or just change your behavior).

Edit after some comments from Bananach and LorenPechtel: I checked my credit report on a credit card I own that I don't use (I don't carry it around, it's locked in a filing cabinet as my emergency card) and has been used in the maybe 3x last five years (as check overdraft protection) and always paid immediately before the claim is reported.

This card shows "good" payments (identical to the card I use regularly) if it shows any history at all. Now, different credit card companies may behave differently when it comes to reporting (as reporting is at their discretion), but it is entirely possible that cards with no use will appear the same as cards with use from a payment history perspective. Since there is no "balance history", only the payment history and the current occupancy for the twins mentioned above appear identical for the couple, with the exception of the current occupancy (if this is different in the scenario).

Loren Pechtel

I don't have to agree. The twin using the 10% has a year of agreed-upon scores for their creditworthiness that the one who doesn't use it at all doesn't have. Thus, this twin will have a higher credit rating in the end. Now, if Twin A had used 10% and Twin B used 0.10%, the scores would be the same.


Notice my use of "similar", not "same". I'm not sure I will agree with you - but what you say may contain something. Fair Isaac has not confirmed this, however, so it is definitely not true - more like "common knowledge" at best.

Loren Pechtel

While Fair Isaac didn't publish their formulas, you can check out the submissions - what's on your credit report. Whether the bill has been paid is there, historical credit is not. Therefore, it is not possible for historical balances to play any role other than, in a binary sense, whether the bill was paid.


@Loren So there isn't a zero dollar bill if you're not using your credit card? I find it hard to believe that credit bureaus would have such an irrational mechanism for distinguishing between $ 0.01 and $ 0.00 so sharply (I haven't had a credit card in the US, so I don't know).


Actually, Bananach makes a good point. @LorenPechtel, I just checked a credit card that I only have with me as an emergency. I never spend it. It is tied to my bank as overdraft protection, but has been used a total of three times in the last 5 years and always paid out immediately (I think, in any case, before reporting the use) - and the credit report shows that I make monthly payments every month have done. Even for zero balance or payment (almost all these months).