Six months ago, I shopped around and switched my auto insurance carrier. I saved money, and gained unlimited small accident forgiveness. Pretty handy when you have an unmarried male under age 25 on your policy. The one gimmick was we would save an extra $50 on the first six month premium for being new policy holders. The premium would go up $50 at renewal. Guess what? Instead of our premium being $50 more, it went down $138, and the explanation was due to our credit score.
We don't carry a credit card balance, we always paid the monthly charges in full when the bill arrived, saving all interest charges and fees. I recently heard Clark Howard, then others, say you should pay your credit card off before your monthly statement. So you have a zero balance. When someone, like your auto insurance company, checks your credit report, the creditors report your last monthly balance. Ours could have been anywhere from $3,000 to $8,000 depending on Christmas, vacations or just regular budget months. Well, for the last few months, I've stopped charging two business days before the statement closes, and paying off the balance before we are billed. So now when the auto insurance company checked our credit report, it saw zero balances for the credit cards which upped our excellent FICO score even higher. And lowered our premium!