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need advice: care and feeding of new Amex with 3.99% BT, 0% APR 6 mo.; hoping for CLI by spring

Hi, everyone--Lord knows that I think I've read every Amex post in existence here, but I'm looking for specific advice to pass on to DD#1 on her new Amex Blue Sky. She would like to be able to get one or more CLI's from them within 5-6 months.

She BT'd $2700 and got a CL of $3200, so effectively she has a CL of $500 to start, plus a cheap parking place for the BT. By next April or May, she will be applying for breathtakingly high student loans for med school, so she wants her scores and credit to peak by that point. She has enough cash that she could pay most of it off now, and at 3.99% interest, it's a wash either way.

What is the best way for her to handle this new card in terms of paying down the BT (how much and when), using it for new charges (0% for 6 months), and in general making Amex happy so that with luck, she will start getting CLI's before student loan app time? She also has a USAA MC with an $8K CL and a USAA Amex with a $1K limit, which I don't think she's ever used. She also some deferred undergraduate loans in good standing.

She's doing volunteer work and essentially has no income, only savings, plus Christmas money coming, etc. So she doesn't want to pay things down or off sooner than necessary, but she does plan to have util under 10% on all cards by April or May. Any ideas on strategy would be welcome! thx
* 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
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Re: need advice: care and feeding of new Amex with 3.99% BT, 0% APR 6 mo.; hoping for CLI by spring

[ Edited ]

I would advise her to pay off all of that balance, as much as she can afford to - whenever she can afford to at this point.

3.99% is profit for Amex each month off the balace, so ideally that should be the lowest possible balance to charge on :smileywink:

Plus remember FICO factors in "payment history" - utl below 10% consecutively for 6 months will make your Amex internal history EXCELLENT!!

I know, I was approved for Blue for Students last year pif each month, didnt charge more than 9% of my CL, in 3 months auto CLI off button for $5000+ and just 2 months ago Upgraded to BlueCash with auto CLI of 10k more so total $20k now =D

I am 21, full time student! so Amex VALUES PIF each month :smileywink:

-corrected a typo :smileyhappy:



Message Edited by SonorityGenius on 11-10-2007 02:21 PM
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Re: need advice: care and feeding of new Amex with 3.99% BT, 0% APR 6 mo.; hoping for CLI by spring

Dang it! My post vanished. Anyway I would have her pay the balance off within four mos- that would leave two mos at zero percent and Amex would see that she is not going to BT that balance- I have heard rumors that Amex does not like to see a lot of BT's.
 
Then, re: CLI's I would ask for one at three mos, then one at six mos, then nine mos- she can prob. get to 15,000 by then.
 
I have had mine less than a year and between the two am at 13,000 in combined credit- but I have been on the conservative side to not appear that greedy.
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Re: need advice: care and feeding of new Amex with 3.99% BT, 0% APR 6 mo.; hoping for CLI by spring



netpanther wrote:
I have had mine less than a year and between the two am at 13,000 in combined credit- but I have been on the conservative side to not appear that greedy.


PS- this is also going from having a measly Visa w/ 1000 limit, QVC and HSN w/ total 400. So I went from 1400 to well over 20000 in credit in about 7 mos and 14000 in AU CL.
 
What I also found, is that after I got my Amex w/ a CL of 3500- the new Visa I apped for and Discover came in at decent limits. I get this feeling and others have said it too- that new CC cos go by what your mid range CL is.
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Re: need advice: care and feeding of new Amex with 3.99% BT, 0% APR 6 mo.; hoping for CLI by spring

Thanks to both of you. The fun thing is, she has no idea what her scores are. She's never pulled them. :smileytongue: Good point about new cards looking at existing CL's! I'll tell her that; otherwise, she'll probably never bother to ask for CLI's.

What about new purchases? Would Amex think it was good / bad / who cares if she made new charges (and PIF'd) while paying off a BT? She has 0% on new purchases for the first 6 months. She is an amazing cheapskate, so we're probably talking a tank of gas a month.
* 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
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Re: need advice: care and feeding of new Amex with 3.99% BT, 0% APR 6 mo.; hoping for CLI by spring



haulingthescoreup wrote:
Thanks to both of you. The fun thing is, she has no idea what her scores are. She's never pulled them. :smileytongue: Good point about new cards looking at existing CL's! I'll tell her that; otherwise, she'll probably never bother to ask for CLI's.

What about new purchases? Would Amex think it was good / bad / who cares if she made new charges (and PIF'd) while paying off a BT? She has 0% on new purchases for the first 6 months. She is an amazing cheapskate, so we're probably talking a tank of gas a month.

Again, this is just my opinion, but if she has the ability to charge something and then pay it down to 20 or 10 percent within two mos I would say yes.
 
My gut feeling that I get from Amex is that they like to see spending and the card not sitting dormant- but they like to see large payments too. What is large is up to you. I just know for a fact they DO NOT like minimum payments.
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Re: need advice: care and feeding of new Amex with 3.99% BT, 0% APR 6 mo.; hoping for CLI by spring

Well, I'll tell her to melt it down, then. :smileyvery-happy: thx!
* 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
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