Firstly, a huge thank you to this community! I have learned so much from the folks here and I really appreciate everyone's advice.
I filed for chapter 7 bankruptcy in March of 2017 principally because of medical bills associated with a hospital stay. My Ch 7 was discharged in July 2017. Because of this forum, I have been quite strategic in rebuilding. I was proactive in pulling my credit reports and checking for updates. After my discharge, almost everything derogatory was removed. I had to dispute one collection account with Equifax and it was promptly removed. Thankfully all three bureaus kept most of my old "good" accounts that are now closed.
I started with no credit and was sort-of nervous to try applying for anything. I received a "pre-approved" offer from Capital One for a standard platinum card so I decided to apply. This was in October 2017, three months post discharge. The process was simple, I actually used my phone to apply and was immediately approved for a $300 SL. This made me feel good. I also received a pre-approved offer from Credit One and applied for it in December of 2017, receiving a $400 SL (got $200 auto CLI in 01/18 to $600 SL). I always paid them in full or left a small balance to show usage (8-10% of SL max). Within a month Credit One increased my SL to $600. I used these cards quite a lot and would pay them down (or in full) before each statement cut.
In March 2018 I received a pre-approval offer from Best Egg for a personal loan. I asked for $4,000 and was approved for up to $6,500 @ 11.4%. I ended up taking $5,000 from them as I had some taxes coming due by April 17 and an old student loan that was transferred from the US DOE to a collection agency and I didn't want it to report on my rebuilding credit report.
In March/April 2018 I asked for a CLI on Capital One because I was on my fifth statement but only received a $100 increase to $400 overall SL. I read that if you enroll in the Credit Steps you will get an auto CLI after 5 or 6 statements. I have been tracking my score with them since the account opened. Initially, they rated me @ 700, it dropped to 652, and then made its way back to 683 or so by April. I did find a link on this website to upgrade my account to a Quick Silver so I did that. On my April statement, I did receive an auto CLI of $350, bringing my overall SL to $750.
I'm finding my FICO score to be very sensitive to anything/everything I do. I was steady at 696 with Experian (about the same with others, +/- 10 points) and an update hit my report(s) that showed all of my accounts were paid to $0. This lack of utilization dropped my score by 23 points, lowering me to 673. This was a headscratcher to me because I thought I was doing okay with how I was using my credit, but apparently showing a balance (under 10% of all lines) is ideal.
I received a pre-approval offer in the mail from Discover Card for their IT card. It sounded like a nice offer. Advertised 0% for 14 months on purchases or balance transfers, a 5% cash back on quarterly promotions (doubled the first year), etc. I decided to apply... I was approved for $6,000 which made me smile BIG! Here is the interesting part. I showed a balance on this card, overall utilization of 6% of all of my lines ($409/7,350), and my FICO score went back up by 20 points!
I've been reading a TON about Capital One and different tiers, credit tranching, etc. and came to the conclusion that my Capital One "Quick Silver" will remain with a rather low SL because of what it started as initially (Platinum Mastercard). Just a little bit ago I decided to check for pre-approvals with Capital One because I like the sound of a $150 bonus in the first three months if I spend $500 (easy to do). It listed a primary pre-approval offer for their Quick Silver Visa Signature (they also suggested the Venture Rewards and Savor). I was pretty nervous applying for another card...I checked all three bureaus and my inquiries are evenly distributed. My original Capital One, Best Egg, and Credit One all pulled Experian. Discover Card pulled Equifax. Looking just now, Capital One may have pulled all three in October. Hmmmm... anywho...back to my NEW Capital One...I got it! They approved me for $5,000 SL - woohoo!
Ch 7 filed 03/17 - discharged 07/17
Capital One Platinum MC - $300 SL 10/17
- Asked for CLI via web, got $100 ($400 SL), upgraded to QS - auto CLI after 6th statement ($350) to $750 SL
Credit One - 12/17 $400 SL
- Auto CLI ($200) in 01/18 to $600 SL
Best Egg Personal Loan - 03/18 - $5,000 @ 11.40%
Discover IT Card - 04/18 - $6,000 SL
Capital One Quick Silver (hopefully Visa Signature) - 05/18 - $5,000 SL
Current Experian FICO 8 Score - 693
That is awesome! Gives me hope. What were you scores when you first filed? And then once the bk7 was discharged?
477 with Experian, right around the time of filing. 523 post discharge. Seemed to increase pretty quickly after that point. I read this thread countless times...