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Super Contributor
DI
Posts: 5,767
Registered: ‎01-28-2008

Can FICO really decipher whether a card is prime or subprime?

[ Edited ]
If so, does one get big score increases with prime cards compared to sub prime cards?
Message Edited by DI on 10-14-2009 01:41 PM
Senior Contributor
creditwherecreditisdue
Posts: 4,923
Registered: ‎04-19-2009

Re: Can FICO really decipher whether a card is prime or subprime?

A bank card is a bank card as far as FICO is concerned. However, a LO knows the difference when your account is MR'ed.
Super Contributor
DI
Posts: 5,767
Registered: ‎01-28-2008

Re: Can FICO really decipher whether a card is prime or subprime?


creditwherecreditisdue wrote:
A bank card is a bank card as far as FICO is concerned. However, a LO knows the difference when your account is MR'ed.

Ok.  Unless being recon, the chances of being MR'ed for credit cards are slim to none.   If the computer isn't biased to whether or not an applicant has a prime or sub prime card, why is so much emphasis is placed on the two?   

Senior Contributor
creditwherecreditisdue
Posts: 4,923
Registered: ‎04-19-2009

Re: Can FICO really decipher whether a card is prime or subprime?

The difference between prime cards and subprime cards is in the policies that come along with them. Subprime cards tend to have: higher APR's, AF's, service charges for performing regular tasks (like rendering payment), higher service charges in general, CL caps, inability to obtain CLI, stingy CLI's when possible, inability to PC, etc. Issuers with a subprime mentality are very difficult to deal with. It is so much more pleasant to deal with prime issuers.
Frequent Contributor
DickC
Posts: 260
Registered: ‎05-21-2009

Re: Can FICO really decipher whether a card is prime or subprime?

I actually asked this particular question to my banker friend and he told me something that has stayed with me for years.

 

He said as far as they were concerned, there are NO "SUB PRIME or PRIME CARDS" only "SUB PRIME or PRIME CUSTOMERS". He stated that a person with a low limit  credit card that handles it well, lives withing their financial means and always pays on time, is a far better customer then a person with a High limit credit cards, who misses payments, is late, and lives on credit.

 

Something tells me this is the philosphy that most bankers have.

Super Contributor
DI
Posts: 5,767
Registered: ‎01-28-2008

Re: Can FICO really decipher whether a card is prime or subprime?

[ Edited ]

DickC wrote:

I actually asked this particular question to my banker friend and he told me something that has stayed with me for years.

 

He said as far as they were concerned, there are NO "SUB PRIME or PRIME CARDS" only "SUB PRIME or PRIME CUSTOMERS". He stated that a person with a low limit  credit card that handles it well, lives withing their financial means and always pays on time, is a far better customer then a person with a High limit credit cards, who misses payments, is late, and lives on credit.

 

Something tells me this is the philosphy that most bankers have.


That's exactly how I feel!!  The sub prime and prime name should be placed on the customers rather than the card.  Thanks DickC!!

Message Edited by DI on 10-14-2009 02:43 PM
Moderator Emeritus
beamMEup
Posts: 4,473
Registered: ‎12-31-2008

Re: Can FICO really decipher whether a card is prime or subprime?

I wonder if people slamming sub-prime cards is just a shorthand version of “I don’t want to deal with their practices” (i.e. I don’t want to pay an annual fee). 

 

FICO just wants a bank card--any bank card.  DH FICO went up 28 points with his first bank card (subprime Orchard $500 CL) and mine went up 20 points with my matching card.  FICO Happy-happy-joy-joy Land.  DH didn’t receive any FICO applause when he added his prime cards.  We just like them better.

 

As a sidenote, our mortgage app was manually reviewed and my subprime Orchard (which I like), wasn’t denigrated at all by the bank mortgage officer.  Just got an “Okay good – you’ve got a bank card.”  Me, apologetically – “Yea, I know, it’s HSBC.”  He, approvingly “Fine – as long as you have a bank card.”

 

Dunno if that’s helpful – I was pleasantly surprised at the time, though.

 

*******

And again, we're back to the lovely dependable FICO Codes.  There is a FICO code for having a bank card.  There are no FICO codes that segregate prime and subprime bank cards.  It's not on the FICO scorecard.  Which is why a subprime bank card scores better than a CU card - and why only part of why we choose cards may be attached to FICO scoring.  We might choose a card with one eye watching the FICO gods and the other eye watching all the other criteria that make our financial lives run smoothly.

Just puttin' syrup on something, don't make it pancakes.
Super Contributor
DI
Posts: 5,767
Registered: ‎01-28-2008

Re: Can FICO really decipher whether a card is prime or subprime?

[ Edited ]
I never had a so called subprime card before, so I'm unsure how the banks that issues those cards operates.  But, the AF's and other fees associated with subprime cards is enough to deter me from wanting to ever have one as a rebuilder.  
Message Edited by DI on 10-14-2009 03:04 PM
Moderator Emeritus
beamMEup
Posts: 4,473
Registered: ‎12-31-2008

Re: Can FICO really decipher whether a card is prime or subprime?

Ha-ha!!!  DI - you're so far away from rebuilder land!!!

 

That's why I shudder when people talk about FP - their fees are outlandish and they basically chew through your cash, your CL and your utilization from day one until the bitter end.  I think there are a few others out there as well.  And that's why I like my Orchard.  AF $39.  Never paid interest (but the interest rate is a somewhat decent 11.99%) or any other fees.  CLI's are slow but consistent.  DH is done with his in less than a year.  I'll probably go for two years.  Very useful rebuilder card for me. 

 

I wonder if there's Prime, Sub-Prime and Bottom-scumming Sub-Prime.........

Just puttin' syrup on something, don't make it pancakes.
Established Contributor
Watchmann
Posts: 985
Registered: ‎05-14-2008

Re: Can FICO really decipher whether a card is prime or subprime?

[ Edited ]

DI wrote:

DickC wrote:

I actually asked this particular question to my banker friend and he told me something that has stayed with me for years.

 

He said as far as they were concerned, there are NO "SUB PRIME or PRIME CARDS" only "SUB PRIME or PRIME CUSTOMERS". He stated that a person with a low limit  credit card that handles it well, lives withing their financial means and always pays on time, is a far better customer then a person with a High limit credit cards, who misses payments, is late, and lives on credit.

 

Something tells me this is the philosphy that most bankers have.


That's exactly how I feel!!  The sub prime and prime name should be placed on the customers rather than the card.  Thanks DickC!!

Message Edited by DI on 10-14-2009 02:43 PM

 

Agree with all that, but let's be realistic, it is not PC to put a stamp like 'subprime' on an indvidual anymore since we have now been told it is not their fault they have lousy credit. Nowadays it is the fault of the system, or situations out of their control.  They are just innocent bystanders who have become a victim of circumstances.  Flame suit on ....     
Message Edited by Watchmann on 10-14-2009 03:21 PM

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