- Centurion Member
- Posts: 1145
- Joined: Sun Jan 26, 2014 3:55 am
- Location: US
Ideally you would want to balance transfer to a card with a 0% introductory rate, but I doubt that is possible at this point. I can't speak from experience, but I would guess you're going to have a lot of trouble getting approved for another card at 90% utilization (but you point out that you realize you'll have to get this down).
When you say drop the annual fee do you mean PC your card to a different BoA card?
A rate reduction would save you money, but if increasing your FICO is your biggest priority I would request a CLI if I were you. This will help imediately with your utilization and I think your odds are better this route anyway. Interest rates are positively correlated with risk, and at your current utilization BofA may well deem you too risky to extend a lower rate.
Sorry I can't be more concrete as far as what utilization to reach before taking any action. I would request a CLI immediately, however. You can call a CSR and ask if they can do one without a HP. You do have a long history with them after all. They may think you'll run the balance up and refuse, but being denied won't impact your FICO. They may even tell you what utilization they would like to see first. Don't charge anything new to the card; use cash/debit card so you can make more progess on that balamce. Pay as much as you can afford over the next 3-4 months or so, and call to inquire about a rate reduction. This way you can explain your situation and they will know you are serious based on your behavior.
The bottom line is getting that balance as low as you can is the best thing you can do for your FICO at the moment. Once that utilizatuon is down to a point where it isn't a red flag to lenders - perhaps not even to 30% - a balance transfer is more realistic (and consider a Chase slate).
EX - 804 (10/16) | TU - 803 (10/16)
American Express EveryDay - $20,000 (10/14)
Discover it - $23,000 (2/14)
AU on Barclay Sallie Mae - $10,000 (8/15)
plus several store accounts of varying usefulness now