Re: What to do with AMEX?
05-16-2009 05:27 PM
I have an AMEX Blue card with a $0 balance. In January and February my average use was $1,500 per month and I always PIF. I found these forums in March and ever since I have been totally AMEX paranoid. I haven't used the card since March. I do not want to receive AA. What in your opinion is the best course of action. No Use, minimal use, carry a balance let them earn a little interest, go back to my original spending. I really do not have a clue what is best to do. I would appreciate solid informed advice.
Unfortunately, with AmEx, there IS no 'best practice' regarding use - users with all kinds of spending/payment patterns, including non-use, have received AA of one kind or another, including account closure, from what I've read. Because the "reasons" for AA and closures that are given in their letters usually seem to have nothing to do with reality or the actual, underlying causes of their decisions, we here have no way to find a pattern to their behavior that might guide us. Only thing I would avoid absolutely is carrying a balance, right now. Use it some if you like, but be sure it's an amount you can PIF right away.
Myself, I've been using my charge card with them for something once every few months, and my own Blue has a couple of recurring auto-charges on it that get PIF'd as soon as they have both posted and I can pay them off in one shot. So far, I've not received AA except for an across-the-board APR increase on my Blue that happened to quite a number (if not all) Blue card holders.
However, there's not a whole lot of AA short of closure that they could do to me, since my Blue only has a $1K limit.
Best bet for now, in my opinion, is to treat that CL as if it is NOT part of your overall available credit, if at all possible, and to manage your use and payment of other cards (and this one if you decide to start using it again) as if the Blue CL did not exist. That way, if it does get AA'd or closed (or one followed by the other), your score won't be impacted by a suddenly skyrocketed util ratio, and you won't be as shocked nor miss it as much because you've already gotten used to behaving as if it didn't exist.
Not much help, I know, but about the best I can offer whilst AmEx's behavior seems to be dictated by the ever-changing Voices in their collective head.
Hang in there. With a bit of luck, when things settle down and AmEx has sorted out for itself what it wants to be as a company and lender, something worthwhile will be left of them - and of our charge and credit cards with them!