Small credit score changes explained

Last updated on
November 18, 2022
Your credit score is a product of lots of different factors that change on a month to month basis. As a result, your score is almost certainly going to change a little bit each month. But small changes, typically less than 15 points in either direction, aren’t anything to pay too much attention to.

There are a few reasons why your credit score might change slightly from month to month:

Credit utilization

Credit utilization is determined by measuring your overall credit limit against the amount on your bill at the end of the month. The bigger the balance, the higher your utilization. While utilization is an important factor, it fluctuates from month to month just based on your spending, so it isn’t going to have a long term effect

Tip - pay off your bills more than just once a month to keep your outstanding balance low. With Fizz, your balance is paid off every day.

Average age of accounts

With every passing month, the average age of your credit accounts changes. Even if you open new accounts, nothing can stop the passage of time. Don’t worry about changes that stem from the average age of your credit accounts. There’s not much you can do other than wait for time to pass.

Tip - while it’s true that you can’t speed up time, opening new credit accounts will lower the average age of your accounts and could lower your score. You don’t have to avoid new lines of credit, just be wary of their affect.

Hard inquiries

Typically when applying for new credit accounts, lenders will do a hard pull on your credit so that they can see your full credit profile. Hard pulls like this can hurt your score by a few points.

Tip - know that when you apply for a new line of credit, you’ll probably see changes to your score. At the same time, don’t worry too much. The effects of a hard pull don’t last more than a couple years.