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Frequent Contributor
Posts: 358
Registered: ‎04-28-2012
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How necessary is an AMEX charge card before a revolver?

Hi all!

 

I'm hitting the 6 months of history point this fall, and my original plan was to app for a Discover More and AMEX Green or Zync.  The more I think about it, though, the more I'm not sure I really want a charge card.  Sure, having the backdating and a foot in the door with AMEX sounds good, but I'm just not loving the idea of having a card with an annual fee.  I'm not sure I'd use it enough to justify it!

 

Other than the More, the 2 cards I really want in the future are the Citi Forward and the AMEX HHonors.

 

So my question is: what would my credit portfolio have to look like to get an AMEX revolver if I were to skip the charge card route?  Care to share your story if you've done just this?

TU: 757 (12/14/14) | EQ: 761 (1/18/15) | EX: 760 (1/18/15)

Cap1 Quicksilver, $4,750 (4/2012); Discover IT, $7,000 (10/2012); Chase Amazon Rewards, $7,600 (10/2012); AMEX Hilton HHonors, $15,000 (11/2012); AMEX Blue Cash Everyday, $15,000 (01/2013); Barclaycard Arrival+, $10,000 (07/2013); Chase Hyatt, $7,000 (09/2013)
Established Contributor
Posts: 731
Registered: ‎02-15-2012
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Re: How necessary is an AMEX charge card before a revolver?

Plenty of people get approved for Amex credit cards without ever having a charge card.  I think you'll want 18, probably 24 months of perfect payment history on your oldest account, with atleast one more account that's atleast 6 months old and perfect history.  You could always just go for the Zync, then apply for the Hilton card before the AF hits on the Zync and if approved close the Zync.

FICOs (2/24/12): EX 752, EQ 740
Chase Sapphire Preferred, Freedom; American Express PR Gold, Blue Cash Everyday
Frequent Contributor
Posts: 350
Registered: ‎07-13-2012
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Re: How necessary is an AMEX charge card before a revolver?

It's not necessary but with your short history I don't think you would get approved for a revolver without a Zync at least not till you gain more history. I applied for the BCP and was approved but my aaoa was 3 yrs with 3 cc and a paid off auto loan. Just app for the Zync possibly add a connectpack and pay your phone bill on it for a year. Whatcc do u currently have. If you don't go with a charge card you may have to build history with 1 or 2 more cards. 

Lender pulled 10-10-13
EQ Fico 715 | EX Fico 714 | TU Fico 703
Established Contributor
Posts: 657
Registered: ‎06-27-2012
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Re: How necessary is an AMEX charge card before a revolver?

Gonna have to build up more history to get either Discover or Amex revolver.  Zinc waves first year AF so if you get  approved inc possibly app for revolver 6 months later, if approved awesome you will have gotten the revolver faster than if you wold have waited another year and a half to build history.  If denied SP and no harm done,GL.

 

BOA: 8.9k
CSP: 5k
Discover: 5k
Citi TY Preferd: 5k
Wally: 5k
JCP: 4.9k
citiForward: 4.7k
ChaseFreedom: 4.5k
DFS: 2k
Valued Contributor
Posts: 1,971
Registered: ‎09-16-2011
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Re: How necessary is an AMEX charge card before a revolver?


Koop10010 wrote:

Plenty of people get approved for Amex credit cards without ever having a charge card.  I think you'll want 18, probably 24 months of perfect payment history on your oldest account, with atleast one more account that's atleast 6 months old and perfect history.  You could always just go for the Zync, then apply for the Hilton card before the AF hits on the Zync and if approved close the Zync.


+1  need a lot more credit history than that for a revolver, if you did apply at 6 months credit history its possible even with zync   you may even end up with a hardlimit zync card


Cards: Chase Southwest 20k & CSP 10k & Freedom 6.6k & Amtrak 4.6k, FNBO DISC 14.9k Oregon Duck 5k, & AMEX BCP 15k & Hilton Surpass 7.5k & Delta Gold 6k & Zync NPSL, Sally Mae5k Sams Club MC 10k, Paypal Extras MC 6k, CapOne QS 2.5k, QS 750, Amazon 3.9k, Walmart 4.5k, Citi Simplicity 7k, HHonors Gold 1k (moved 5k CL to Simplicity), Discover IT 6.5k and a nice stack of store cards.
Last APP 12/15/2014
Frequent Contributor
Posts: 358
Registered: ‎04-28-2012
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Re: How necessary is an AMEX charge card before a revolver?

Oh, I know I wouldn't be approved at 6 months! LOL I wouldn't even consider trying that.  I mainly wanted an idea of how many tradelines I should have/AAoA/score before apping for an AMEX revolver.

TU: 757 (12/14/14) | EQ: 761 (1/18/15) | EX: 760 (1/18/15)

Cap1 Quicksilver, $4,750 (4/2012); Discover IT, $7,000 (10/2012); Chase Amazon Rewards, $7,600 (10/2012); AMEX Hilton HHonors, $15,000 (11/2012); AMEX Blue Cash Everyday, $15,000 (01/2013); Barclaycard Arrival+, $10,000 (07/2013); Chase Hyatt, $7,000 (09/2013)
Frequent Contributor
Posts: 272
Registered: ‎12-28-2011
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Re: How necessary is an AMEX charge card before a revolver?

isoldmyatlas, I see that you have Cap1 Cash Rewards for Newcomers as the only credit card. It seems that I am basically 6-8 months "ahead" of you as I have also started from scratch with Cap1 card for newcomers in August-September 2011.

 

By no means I can't guarantee that the path I've chosen for myself was the optimal one and that it might lead to success in your particular case, but I can just share what steps I've taken over the year. 

After having Cap1 card for a couple of months I applied for BofA 1-2-3 Cash rewards, mainly because I had a checking account with BofA. It was not approved instantly, but it took a couple of weeks for manual processing. 

 

After being approved for BofA card I made my biggest mistake - I wrongfully came to a stupid conclusion that I could apply for whatever I want (as long as I've been approved for BofA card) and went for an app spree applying for (!) Barclay Apple, Citi Expedia, Amex Delta and a couple of store cards, I think, backed by Citi. Bang! Decline, decline, decline, decline. Instantly. 

 

Roughly at this point (after finding myself with 4 denial letters and no approvals at all) I found my way here to these forums where I got lots of useful tips and basically started to understand what the prime cards are, what cards are definitely out of my league etc. Based on some advice here a couple of months later (in December 2011 roughly) I applied for several store cards backed by GE bank (GAP, JCPenney, Amazon and Walmart a bit later). I was approved for all of them and got pretty low limits (300, 500, 300 and 300), but I was generally happy to increase the number of my tradelines reporting. Roughly at the same time I also applied for Target store card, got it with $700 limit and decided to stop apping for a while at this point (I think, it was January). 

 

In parallel I've been closely monitoring pre-approval / pre-qualification sections on Discover, Amex and Cap1 websites. While there is no clear indication that pre-approval on those websites means anything at all, it gave me a certain confidence when I finally saw an offer from Discover in the end of May this year. At that point my oldest line (Cap1 for Newcomers) was around 9 months old and my TU FICO score from Walmart was fluctuating around 685-690.

I decided to give it a try, applied for Discover and got it with $2500 CL. Roughly at the same time I decided to try to open the door to Chase and applied for their Chase Amazon. Success again and surprisingly high CL of $3000 (my biggest so far). 

 

In the end of July (around 11 months from opening my first Cap1 card) I started getting pre-qualified letters from Amex for their Green and Gold cards. I checked their pre-apporval section on the website and found out that I could also qualify for Blue. I tried to apply for BCE and got instant approval, so answering your main question - no, you don't necessarily need a charge card to qualify for a revolver with Amex.

 

Sorry for a very long post, just wanted to share my path and hope this would help you to make a decision. 

If I were in your shoes now I would probably go for Walmart / Amazon card right now (with Walmart you will start getting your TU FICO score every month for free), wait for 4-6 months and apply for Discover More. Maybe you can try to jump to Discover boat right away, but I have no idea if this could work well.

 

Good luck!

In my wallet now: Amex PRG NPSL, Amex BCE $15k $17k (thanks to recent CLI), Chase Freedom 11k, CSP $6k, Chase United ME $5k, Citi Dividend $5.6k, Discover It $4.5k and a handful of other cards...
TU Dec 2013 - 752Sep 2013 - 764 - new all time maximum

Obsolete data &colon:smileywink: Current TU - probably around ~750. I am now applying only for cards I can have fat sign-up bonuses on, repay them right away and close before next year. That's why BKLSBNKDELAWARE probably blacklisted me long ago, LOL...
Frequent Contributor
Posts: 358
Registered: ‎04-28-2012
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Re: How necessary is an AMEX charge card before a revolver?

Getting the Zync and then closing it after getting the HHonors sounds the most appealing to me.  Last time I checked I thought I saw the AF wasn't waived the first year, but now I see that it is!  I could definitely make that work.

TU: 757 (12/14/14) | EQ: 761 (1/18/15) | EX: 760 (1/18/15)

Cap1 Quicksilver, $4,750 (4/2012); Discover IT, $7,000 (10/2012); Chase Amazon Rewards, $7,600 (10/2012); AMEX Hilton HHonors, $15,000 (11/2012); AMEX Blue Cash Everyday, $15,000 (01/2013); Barclaycard Arrival+, $10,000 (07/2013); Chase Hyatt, $7,000 (09/2013)
Established Contributor
Posts: 869
Registered: ‎07-04-2012
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Re: How necessary is an AMEX charge card before a revolver?

+1 to mikka all the way and also suggesting the adquisition of a zync and a walmart (maybe only approved for the store one) if you decide to try at 6 months mark.

Fico Scores: . Walmart TU 748 . Garden 8/19 2014 .

Cap One Journey 500 | Discover IT 500 | GE Home Design 5.6k | GE HHGREGG 5k | Amex Zync NPSL | Amex BCE 6k | Citi Forward 4.2k | Citi Dividend 3k | GE BrandsMart 1k | GE Lowes 8.5k | Discover Walmart 7.5k | Barclays Apple 2.5k | BoA CR 2.7k | CSP 7.2k | Platinum Prestige 5k | IT Chrome 4k | Slate 2.3k |

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