I originally got a college visa platinum from Wells Fargo back in the beginning of '06, never got a credit line increase. Finally called about it about a year ago and asked for a resonable increase from $700-$1000, and I was declined for I believe what they call a guide line increase (soft increase). Of course they didn't actually tell me that, just that's what always happens when they say you will get a letter in the mail. So I acted all depressed with the associate I was speaking with on the phone and she was nice enough to warm transfer me to a credit analyst who did a hard pull (EX), thought she had said (TU) so that was kind of sad, but she did pull the report and went over it. Mentioned the high balance on one AU card I had, but she said she would put through the increase anyway.
Anyway that seemed like a lot of hard work just to get a HUGE $300 increase, so I sockdrawed the card in favor of my new Discover at $5000. So after about six months I get a letter saying they raised it from $1000-$2000 and lowered the APR, now they bumped me to $5000, both of which I didn't even ask for. I get the idea that Wells Fargo bases their auto CLI on old reports tired to your account and thats why it took over a year to get about $700.
As a general rule, I don't recommend going for CLIs more than once every six months. Most banks and CCCs will do a hard, and you don't want those piling up.
The exception would be if you had a truly significant (I mean 40 points or more) increase in FICO score generated by removing your most recent baddie. If three months ago your FICO was, say, 643 and your most recent baddie was eighteen months ago, and now your FICO score is 696 and your most recent baddie is now 3 years old, then go for it. Otherwise, resist the temptation.
- - - - in a credit-scoring postnuclear Stone Age...