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Minimum FICO for prime cards?

Regular Contributor

Minimum FICO for prime cards?

Hey All, 


I find extremely unreliable, and great for anecdotal evidence. From your experience, what are the minimum FICO scores required for the following prime lenders?








Any other prime cards? 


**edited to say "prime" instead of "subprime." i've been with capone too long  :smileywink:

Message Edited by emartin82 on 03-12-2009 10:44 PM
Message 1 of 13
Established Contributor

Re: Minimum FICO for prime cards?

I can only speak for Chase (circuit city visa) i was approved for $2000 with a fico of 713 Eq pull only.
Message 2 of 13
Moderator Emeritus

Re: Minimum FICO for prime cards?

Given the current economic conditions, its hard to pinpoint where each CCC draws the line with scores. BTW, you meant to say prime lender, right?Smiley Happy


In the not too distant past, this what I would have said. Scores alone.


Chase      680  (might pull any one of CRAs)

Citi          680+ ( usually EQ or TU)

Discover  700+  (usually EX or TU)

BofA       580 for secured card, 680 for unsecured (can be any of the three CRAs)

AmEx     a few years ago, it had to be well into the 700s, now around 675+ (almost always EX)


FIA         same as BoA scores for unsecured cards (mostly EX)



Message 3 of 13
Established Contributor

Re: Minimum FICO for prime cards?

Citi and Chase both approved me with scores less than 630 and credit limts ranging from $500-2,000 a  year ago. Chase (I believe) has approved me wth even lower scores. They were the first prime bank to give me a chance, and to this day I've never been denied a Chase card.
But even though my scores were low I have real good payment history and low DTI, I think that may factor in a lot.
Message Edited by barbaralee on 03-13-2009 04:24 AM
Message 4 of 13
Regular Contributor

Re: Minimum FICO for prime cards?

I don't think there is a one size fit all in terms of FICO scores for any of these lenders.  I think it depends on a lot of factors such as DTI, credit history, inquiries, and any negatives on the individual's report.  Thus, it is a case by case analysis based on your individualized report.  With that being said, I can speak for a few of these lenders based on my experience.  I have had a few of these lenders since college.


Chase - 660+

Citi - 640+

AmEx - 640+


I qualify these scores based on my experience.  I was in college with limited credit history and no negatives on my report.  Lenders tend to be more lenient for college students.  I hope this helps.

Message 5 of 13
Established Contributor

Re: Minimum FICO for prime cards?

It is not just a score. I have a 670 TU and a 665 EQ (EX was 630 in January but has since gone up I am sure) and I was denied by Citi and AMEX last month. Reason: Length of Credit History. In fact on my recon to Citi the CSR even said I have one of the cleanest reports she has seen in a while. Citi told me to keep up the good work and reapply in six months.


AMEX keeps sending pre-approvals and softing me every other week (for Account Reviews no less). FUAMEX!



"Evacuate, in our moment of triumph? I think you overestimate their chances."
Message 6 of 13

Re: Minimum FICO for prime cards?

I have an EQ score of 673 and TU of 690ish and I can't get a decent credit card from BofA or Citi.


Smiley Sad

These are the reasons Citi gave.


 o   Your credit report shows too few credit references.

o Your credit report shows one or more recent requests
for credit.


I have 4 credit cards and I've applied for credit twice before Citi in the past few months. 


Once I get the letter in the mail explaning why I got declined from Cap1 I'll call a backdoor number since it's probably as screwed up as Citi's reason. But yeah, it's ridiculous how hard it is to credit nowadays. 


Edit: And Pappy how long was your credit history and average account length. ?

Message Edited by Wills188 on 03-13-2009 11:41 AM
Message 7 of 13
Established Contributor

Re: Minimum FICO for prime cards?

I have 8 months of history. All three of my accounts age to one year in June (and the FICO score simulator estimates I will be over 700 when that happens).


I guess Citi wants over a year of history on the reports before they extend a CC. (Of course I know people who got Citi cards without having a year of history.) So as always and everyone needs to remember this YMMV!  


More than jist scores go into the factor. You could have 700+ and not get a CC  Several people on these forums are proof of that. You could also have a 580 and get a decent CC. The only way you will know for sure is to apply.


"Evacuate, in our moment of triumph? I think you overestimate their chances."
Message 8 of 13
Moderator Emerita

Re: Minimum FICO for prime cards?

This is SO very true! It's not just the score; it's not just the report; it's the combination of the two.

And different banks vary as to which they lean on more.

Your best bet is to research the fire out of any card that you're interested in, using the search function here on the forums. And even then, with the credit melt-down over the last 6 months, do realize that criteria that worked in the past might not work now.
* 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
Message 9 of 13
Valued Member

Re: Minimum FICO for prime cards?

Yeppers! It varies case by case. No one would extend me credit when my EX fico score was 705, but finally I got my first credit card (a Capital One)! I made (plenty) mistakes and my score dropped to the 300's (smh)! I cleaned up my act and I have a number of accounts in good standing. Now I'm in the low 500's - mid 600's and have an easier time w/ approvals than I did w/ almost no credit and a 705 EX fico score!
Message Edited by iLiveCredit on 07-04-2009 06:31 PM
Macy's $1,200 | Capital One $750 | Credit One Bank $500 | Victoria's Secret Angel $500 | EXPRESS Next $500 | Chase Freedom $300 | J.Crew $250 | The Buckle $250 | Citicard $200

3/19/3013 TU 583 (CK SCORE) EX 596 (CK SCORE)
3/19/2013 EX 595 (
3/13/2013 EQ 596 (FICO) TU 576 (FICO)
3/01/2013 EQ 586 (FICO)
2/27/2013 TU 594 (Credit Karma) EQ 612 (Credit Sesame) EX 643 (Quizzle)
9/14/2012 EX 550 ( TU 515 (FICO) EQ 563 (FICO)
Message 10 of 13