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New Member
Posts: 4
Registered: ‎03-13-2008
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Continental Finance Nightmare

So I didn't do enough research before randomly applying for cards to help rebuild my credit and ended up with (among others) a Continental Finance Gold card with a limit of $300. I understood the fees and that there would be a balance of $225 on the card upon activation. I though that was the price I had to pay for my poor credit.

My account was opened 2/27/08. I got the card and used it for a meal, mainly to see if it worked (I then froze the card, literally, in ice in the freezer). That was a charge of $33.43 on 3/6/08. They told me upon activating my card that I already had a payment due ($50 was due 3/24/08), so I registered online where my account information appeared to be accurate and I made the payment.

This is where it gets bad. I logged on after the payment was deducted from my checking account and was very surprised to see that I had a current balance of $212.43 and an available credit of $8. This is out of a $300 credit limit and the card had only been used the one time. So, slightly panicked about having such a low available credit I made another online payment (stupid, I know) for $40 plus the $4 online payment fee. So after a $50 and a $44 payment my account currently shows a balance of $172.43 and available credit of $4. So I'm freaking out that they'll charge me some kind of crap fee and send my account overlimit.

I've done the research that I should have done beforehand now and I see that Continental are basically scam artists but I'm stuck with the account now.

Charges on the card

$300 credit limit

-$25 annual fee (2/28/08)

-$200 account processing fee (2/28/08)

-$33.43 dinner charge (3/4/08)

+$50 internet payment (3/6/08)

-$4 internet payment fee (3/6/08)

+$44 internet payment (3/11/08)

-$4 internet payment fee (3/11/08)

After all that I have available credit of $4 and a balance of $172.43. I cannot make their math make sense and really need to know where I should go from here. (BTW, I am trying to reach their customer service too, but with the reports I've read I'm not hopeful).

Thanks so much to anyone who made it this far and has any advice for me.

Regular Contributor
Posts: 200
Registered: ‎03-11-2008
0

Re: Continental Finance Nightmare

This sounds unbelievable, although I do believe your situation.  Thank you for posting the atrocities of this company.  I don't know how these people sleep at night.  I would report them to governing agencies if you think they misled you in anyway.  Horrible business practices.  Please review all the material you had prior to opening an account with them.  Hopefully you find something that you can use.
 
If you find yourself tied to this company with no recourse, eat your humble pie, pay them off and cancel this account ASAP.  Let this be a lesson to the next person. 
 
Again, I am sorry to see you go through this.
 
 
Valued Contributor
Posts: 1,278
Registered: ‎06-01-2007
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Re: Continental Finance Nightmare

I am former customer of theirs and have nothing negative to report, except the fact their customer service sucks and fees are outrageous. But that's the price to pay to build credit.
Try not to become a man of success but rather to become a man of value
Albert Einstein 1879 - 1955

700 Club
Frequent Contributor
Posts: 440
Registered: ‎08-08-2007
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Re: Continental Finance Nightmare

I've heard bad things about them, but I don't think they've done anything wrong. The upfront fees are what they are, and it looks like they're "holding" your last payment for a few days before releasing your credit. Fairly typical with some of the sub-prime lenders, but I suspect your balance is right and in a few days you'll have the correct amount of corresponding credit.
 
Hang in there and just always pay on time (or ideally at least one week in advance)...
Rust never sleeps and neither does my fico score...
New Member
Posts: 4
Registered: ‎03-13-2008
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Re: Continental Finance Nightmare

My balance is correct I believe, but there is a big discrepancy in the available credit. I should have available credit of $127.57. Even if they're somehow holding the amount of my payments against me it still doesn't add up.
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Epic Contributor
Posts: 28,098
Registered: ‎04-01-2007
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Re: Continental Finance Nightmare


ficonovice wrote:
I've heard bad things about them, but I don't think they've done anything wrong. The upfront fees are what they are, and it looks like they're "holding" your last payment for a few days before releasing your credit. Fairly typical with some of the sub-prime lenders, but I suspect your balance is right and in a few days you'll have the correct amount of corresponding credit.
Hang in there and just always pay on time (or ideally at least one week in advance)...



I don't know; even with them not posting the payments, this doesn't seem right:

Charges on the card

$300 $300 credit limit

$275 -$25 annual fee (2/28/08)

$75-$200 account processing fee (2/28/08)

$41.57-$33.43 dinner charge (3/4/08)

+$50 internet payment (3/6/08)

$37.57-$4 internet payment fee (3/6/08)

+$44 internet payment (3/11/08)

$33.57-$4 internet payment fee (3/11/08)

How is this an available balance of $4? I'm not seeing this...
* Credit is a wonderful servant, but a terrible master. * Who's the boss --you or your credit?
FICO's: EQ 781 - TU 793 - EX 779 (from PSECU) - Done credit hunting; having fun with credit gardening. - EQ 590 on 5/14/2007
Valued Contributor
Posts: 1,278
Registered: ‎06-01-2007
0

Re: Continental Finance Nightmare

Call customer service and get the info.
Try not to become a man of success but rather to become a man of value
Albert Einstein 1879 - 1955

700 Club
Frequent Contributor
Posts: 440
Registered: ‎08-08-2007
0

Re: Continental Finance Nightmare

I'm far from an expert, but as long as the balance is correct you don't have much to worry about with other fees pushing you over your credit limit. Your available credit is only $4.00, but the balance is what matters. I'm sure they're holding your payments before releasing your available credit and they must have some other finance charges that you're not seeing yet, but will.
 
Good idea to call customer service, but I'm sure your available credit (more to your liking) will catch up in a few days, but never lose sight of finance charges and other potential fees...
Rust never sleeps and neither does my fico score...
Frequent Contributor
Posts: 400
Registered: ‎02-29-2008
0

Re: Continental Finance Nightmare

Well, I currently have a Continental Finance charge that started with a CLI of $300.  When I initially received the card I too was hit was the fees.  However, I choose not to utilize the card until I received my intial bill.  I was a little leary knowing that the card was almost to its max and didnt want to take the chance in receiving an over the limit fee.
Now, that I have had this card for two years my CL $600.  That doesn't seem like much, but they were there were no one wasn't.
The only thing I have to say odd about them is that every payment regardless of the balance is $50.00.
 
Also, I found the CSR's to be friendly and helpful.  They had made a billing error and charged me a $70 payment. When I called, they immediately recognized the problem, updated the system, and informed me the payment was on $50.00.  Even though my CL is low, they upgraded me to a GOLD card- ha ha ha .
 
I am really sorry that your experience with Continental, in this short time, has not been great.

Starting Score: 555/567/570
Current Score: 590(TU)/567 (EX)/562(EQ)
Goal Score: 680-700


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Established Member
Posts: 53
Registered: ‎03-01-2008
0

Re: Continental Finance Nightmare

I had to get rid of this card after what they did to me.  I was never late and never had anything wrong with handeling the card.  I got the card when it first came out with the "Go for the Gold" program.  I got credit limit increases every 3-4 months after my 1st year and after the 3rd year the monthly maintenance fee would be waived according to the terms that I applied for and accepted at account opening.  I reached my 2nd year this January and was told 1-that my monthly maintenance fee would go up from $10 to $12 a month and 2-that they decided to cut the "go for the gold" program.  I was irrate and demanded that I still have my maintenance fee removed after the 3rd year per the agreement.  I don't carry a balance besides the maintenance fee each month and always PIF.  They said "sorry too bad."  I said oh really....we'll.... see ya.  Paid the balance off and closed it immediately.  The supervisor on the floor suddenly appeared on the phone and pleaded with me to stay with them but offered no consolation in return.  I said, "I'll enjoy my new citi card instead" and hung up on him.  Called again later to confirm account closure and got the letter confirming with final bill at $0 balance a while back.  Feels good to kick these dirt bags to the curb after baiting and switching me so.  I believe they have made a lot of people mad.  Oh well.  It served it purpose and today I get a 20 point FICO boost on EQ and TU.  Heading to 700 club fast.  Smiley Very Happy 
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