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Should I apply for card now or after graduation and employment?

Regular Contributor

Re: Should I apply for card now or after graduation and employment?


SonorityGenius wrote:

Congrats on your upcoming graduation!


I would suggest you go the BofA secured route first 99/500 and than build up your history with 'activity' = scores increasing, esp with Amex age if you're able to pull it off would do wonders to your score!


Thanks for the congrats but I'm not there yet. Ha-ha. I am trying not to count my chickens before they hatch. I've got a lot of work to do yet this fall but I am getting close, very close. I guess I am near the summit but I am thinking of my finances once I am done. My student loans will come due so I need to have my credit in order as much as possible.

 

As an unemployed student with 7 months left to go before graduation I am wondering if I should still try to apply for a student credit card because of my lack of income or should I try for a regular card since I will be employed soon? (hopefully!) As I recall my first AMEX back in 1991 was a simple green card with maybe a $100 limit. Haha.

 

Do I need to show proof of income/employment?


FICO® TU: 703 8/07/2015, EQ: 716 8/07/2015
Message 11 of 14
Valued Member

Re: Should I apply for card now or after graduation and employment?

I am an unemployed student, and I have successfully applied for a non-student credit card.  I was also turned down for the two student credit cards I applied for first, probably because my credit history is a bit too long for a "student". 

 

Anyway, I would suggest applying for regular credit cards. Just be sure to select "student" for employment status (instead of "unemployed" ).  Some may ask for more details about your education (where you are attending, graduation year, etc.), some don't. And I have heard that some will automatically process you for a student CC instead of the standard CC.  

 

I had good luck with Chase Platinum Visa, and my scores are slightly lower than yours.  It was a lower CL than I wanted ($500), but I got a good interest rate (10.99%), so I'm happy. Smiley Happy

Message Edited by willowblue on 11-02-2008 11:05 AM
Message 12 of 14
Regular Contributor

Re: Should I apply for card now or after graduation and employment?

 


willowblue wrote:

I am an unemployed student, and I have successfully applied for a non-student credit card. I was also turned down for the two student credit cards I applied for first, probably because my credit history is a bit too long for a "student".

 

Anyway, I would suggest applying for regular credit cards. Just be sure to select "student" for employment status (instead of "unemployed" ). Some may ask for more details about your education (where you are attending, graduation year, etc.), some don't. And I have heard that some will automatically process you for a student CC instead of the standard CC.

 

I had good luck with Chase Platinum Visa, and my scores are slightly lower than yours. It was a lower CL than I wanted ($500), but I got a good interest rate (10.99%), so I'm happy. Smiley Happy


 

Thanks for sharing your experience. Your post made a lot of sense.

In the future, once the CBR updates my hometown address I will try to apply to Amex and then to other cards as well. However, I am trying to figure how frequent I should be applying for cards. I've found a few threads but they haven't clarified my question.

 

My goal is to establish more revolving accounts with minimal utilization to balance out my heavy student loan debt. All my open accounts are students loans. I have no plans of seeking a mortgage or auto loan in the foreseeable future.

Right now I am looking at Amex application and I have a few questions about some particulars.

Should I mark *own* or *rent*?
My hometown address is my parents home and they own it and I do not pay rent.

It asks for my employers name, city, and state. Can I skip that since I am an unemployed student? I should say that this is the first year in 8 that I haven't worked for the university but I took time off to finish my dissertation.

 

Next it asks my annual household income.
Currently I am living off a student loan but I don't think of that as income. Should I put $0, the annual amount of my loan? Or what?

 

Finally it asks, *income source* and has a pull down window with an option to select STUDENT. Hooray! I know the answer to that one! Smiley Very Happy


FICO® TU: 703 8/07/2015, EQ: 716 8/07/2015
Message 13 of 14
Valued Member

Re: Should I apply for card now or after graduation and employment?


mazinaige wrote:

 

Right now I am looking at Amex application and I have a few questions about some particulars.

Should I mark *own* or *rent*?
My hometown address is my parents home and they own it and I do not pay rent.


I have no idea what to do on the AmEx application, and I'm in essentially the same position.  Some CC apps have "Other" or "Parents/Relatives" as options, and some ask for the amount spent on housing a month.  On these applications I put "Other" with $0 spent on housing.  When they only gave me a choice between "Own" and "Rent" I decided that "Rent" is the more honest answer, but it may hurt the odds of being approved.  

 


mazinaige wrote:


It asks for my employers name, city, and state. Can I skip that since I am an unemployed student? I should say that this is the first year in 8 that I haven't worked for the university but I took time off to finish my dissertation.


Yes, you should be able to skip that section.

 


mazinaige wrote:

 

Next it asks my annual household income.
Currently I am living off a student loan but I don't think of that as income. Should I put $0, the annual amount of my loan? Or what?


Don't put $0-you won't get the credit card.  I don't know what to suggest for AmEx because they seem tempermental these days.  For other credit card companies, if you are living off of student loans/scholarships/family support/etc., I think it is honest to put the annual total as income (you may want to subtract tuition and univeristy fees first) because that is the income you would be using to pay any credit card bills.  Others may view it differently.

I have heard that $15,000 is the minimum annual income that a CCC will approve an application for, so you may want to consider that before applying. 
Message 14 of 14