I decided to round out my recent non-appy spree last night by pressing the "Request a credit line increase" button for my BofA Rewards American Express Card. I did this with some trepidation as the last (and only other) time I had done so led to a tremendous generation of ill will toward BofA by me. I left that incident swearing that I would never ever ask BofA for anything - ever! If they wanted me to have it they would have to give it to me. However, if I was going to press the button I had to do it yesterday before major changes (all positive, but some new, possibly score lowering stuff) started reporting to the CRB's.
I got the form, which I filled in (I left the amount blank) and then pressed the proceed button and got a page that said: "Thanks for Letting Us Serve You! Thank you for submitting your request. In order for your request to be completed, please call 800.318.6649..." and displayed the info I had entered onto the form. This did not exactly warm the cockles of my heart. I interpreted this as another invitation to be berated by a BofA Credit Analyst and send packing empty handed and feeling about 2" tall as I had done before.
Overnight I contemplated this message and by morning was resigned to making the call. I felt sufficiently horrible (pain!) this morning that no diatribe from a credit analyst was going to make things any worse. So I called the number and it was directly answered by Mark, a Senior Credit Analyst, who seemed chipper for very early on a Saturday morning.
I explained my situation and shared my speculation that perhaps I had gotten that message as a result of having entered the information incorrectly on the form. I was told that there are no "automatic" CLI's being offered by BofA at the current time and that filling in the form and pressing the button has two outcomes: 1) a straight rejection or 2) the page that I got informing me to call. In other words, if you want a CLI from BofA at the current time you must speak to a credit analyst! Once we had that straight we reviewed the information I had entered on the form. The interpretation of leaving the amount blank is that you are requesting to be increased to the maximum possible credit limit. Mark asked me to hold on for a few moments as he would have to go offline and check a few things and he would be back shortly.
After a few moments he returned and said they would increase the CL on my card from $3.5K to $7.5K. I was almost speechless. (That is a rare moment indeed!) I thanked Mark for getting my day off to a great start. At this point we had a little discussion regarding APR's. My card had recently been changed from 9.9%F to 9.9%V. He said there was nothing that could be done about that and that all BofA rates would be changing to variable rates. He also said 9.9%V was about as good as you could get at the current time, which is about what I expected.
Before I left him I asked about changing my BofA Rewards American Express card to a BofA Accelerated Rewards American Express card. Mark went offline again for a very brief time and returned saying sure, he ordered it up and said I would receive my new card shortly.
I got way more that I expected and I am pretty pleased. My only issue now is: Must I now upgrade my opinion of BofA? I think for the time being they are going to remain "suspect". I won't trust them very far, but they did do me a solid today. I asked for and got an activation CLI when I opened the card in APR2008 from $2.5K to $3.5K, but nothing since then. I thought they didn't love me, but I guess I was wrong. All I had to do was ask in the right way and I was well taken care of. I consider myself very fortunate.
ed. I forgot to say that this was definitely done with no hard INQ, keeping today's achievement in sync with the remainder of my "non-appy" spree!
I am still stunned! That on top of everything else I have achieved in the last few weeks (which there will be a large forthcoming post regarding). I must be doing something right. Wish I could bottle it and sell it!
Three weeks ago I pushed the button, leaving the amount requested blank, and got the same message to call. I assumed it was not going to be productive and so ignored the message. I happened to log onto my account a few days later and was surprised to see they had raised my limit from $6500 to $7500. Maybe I should have called!
I came razor close to going your route. I really dislike the Jekyl and Hyde nature of BofA credit analysts. I did it really early today while I still had the energy to deal with it,
The CA did say the purpose of having you call was so "they could get you a better chance of approval and the maximum amount possible." True or not? Who knows.