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App first then garden... or garden first?

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Regular Contributor

App first then garden... or garden first?

Hi folks, I'm newly registered here but have been lurking for some time, and am looking for some advice.

Here's the scoop. I'm recently divorced and refinancing my house to pay off the ex's half of the equity. The closing is in a couple weeks. I'd like to get a cash back card that's more than 1% for everything and am eyeing the Citi Double Cash as my 1st choice and Chase Freedom Unlimited as the 2nd.

 

I'm thinking of three possible options:

 

1. Apply for the card immediately after mortgage closing, or a few days afterward, before the mortgage has a chance to report. That way I only have the score ding from the inquiries and not for the new account at application time.

 

2. Wait for the mortgage to report, then apply. This will probably result in lower scores due to a new account. Additionally, one of my existing accounts, a HELOC, will be paid off and closed.

 

3. Garden for a while to let things settle, and then apply for the card 6 months to a year after closing, or even longer (2 years?)

 

Vital stats: EX FICO 813, TU FICO 824 as of 6/19. I don't have a free way to get EQ FICO, but I expect it's over 800 as well. AAoA 6 years, 8 mos. AAoOA (open accounts only) is 9 years 11 months. Open accounts include 3 credit cards and a HELOC. The HELOC will be paid from refinance funds and closed after the closing. 2 inquiries per CRA in June from mortgage shopping and app, 2 other inquires that are >1 year. Most recent card app was a Chase Amazon Visa in early 2018, and no other card apps in many years so I'm at 1/24. Reported utilization 1-3% (I use AZEO).

 

Once I get this new card, I expect to garden indefinitely, as I don't want or need any other credit products in the foreseeble future.

 

So, what do the experts here think I should do? Apply immediately after closing, wait for the mortgage to report, or garden for a while?

 

And then, my other decision, what card do I go for? Citi DC is my first choice, since it has 2% cash back, but the Chase FU has sign-up bonuses (I think the current one is 3% for a year), 0% intro APR for purchases, and the points can be transferred the Sapphire products for travel (which I don't plan on doing since I almost never travel).  I tend to keep my cards a long time and rarely app, so long term benefits weigh more for me than short term bonuses.

 

Thanks!

Gardening starting 8/1/19
Goal: 0 Inquiries and diamond spade
July: EX 813, TU 821. 3 CCs, 1 mortgage, 5 inquiries.
August: EX 789, TU 785. The roller coaster ride has begun.
Message 1 of 19
18 REPLIES 18
Established Contributor

Re: App first then garden... or garden first?

2% for everyday DC

3% first year on CFU

 

Might as well start building in some additional foundational cards.  Maybe for diversification hit up BOA / Barclay's for a third.

500K+ TCL / 800+ FCOs
Message 2 of 19
Community Leader
Senior Contributor

Re: App first then garden... or garden first?


@DivorcedAndBroke wrote:

Hi folks, I'm newly registered here but have been lurking for some time, and am looking for some advice.

Here's the scoop. I'm recently divorced and refinancing my house to pay off the ex's half of the equity. The closing is in a couple weeks. I'd like to get a cash back card that's more than 1% for everything and am eyeing the Citi Double Cash as my 1st choice and Chase Freedom Unlimited as the 2nd.

 

I'm thinking of three possible options:

 

1. Apply for the card immediately after mortgage closing, or a few days afterward, before the mortgage has a chance to report. That way I only have the score ding from the inquiries and not for the new account at application time.

 

2. Wait for the mortgage to report, then apply. This will probably result in lower scores due to a new account. Additionally, one of my existing accounts, a HELOC, will be paid off and closed.

 

3. Garden for a while to let things settle, and then apply for the card 6 months to a year after closing, or even longer (2 years?)

 

Vital stats: EX FICO 813, TU FICO 824 as of 6/19. I don't have a free way to get EQ FICO, but I expect it's over 800 as well. AAoA 6 years, 8 mos. AAoOA (open accounts only) is 9 years 11 months. Open accounts include 3 credit cards and a HELOC. The HELOC will be paid from refinance funds and closed after the closing. 2 inquiries per CRA in June from mortgage shopping and app, 2 other inquires that are >1 year. Most recent card app was a Chase Amazon Visa in early 2018, and no other card apps in many years so I'm at 1/24. Reported utilization 1-3% (I use AZEO).

 

Once I get this new card, I expect to garden indefinitely, as I don't want or need any other credit products in the foreseeble future.

 

So, what do the experts here think I should do? Apply immediately after closing, wait for the mortgage to report, or garden for a while?

 

And then, my other decision, what card do I go for? Citi DC is my first choice, since it has 2% cash back, but the Chase FU has sign-up bonuses (I think the current one is 3% for a year), 0% intro APR for purchases, and the points can be transferred the Sapphire products for travel (which I don't plan on doing since I almost never travel).  I tend to keep my cards a long time and rarely app, so long term benefits weigh more for me than short term bonuses.

 

Thanks!


Hi and welcome to MyFICO

 

Go for option 1. That’s what I did. I closed on a Friday and applied for AmX and a NFCU CLI on Monday. The AmX was approved for $15K and got

an 8K NFCU CLI and my scores were high 700-low 800. 

 

Yep, go for it! I personally don’t like Citi because their redemption is $25K. 

GOALS: Garden til APR 2020 and 800 Club



JUN 2019: EX 788, TU 794, EQ 779
DEC 2018: EX 777, TU 783, EQ 799

|| AmX Cash Magnet $25K || NFCU CashRewards $20K || Macy's $20K || Discover IT $18.7K || NFCU CLOC $15K || NFCU Platinum $12.5K || AmX ED $11.5K || CitiCostco $7K || CitiDC $6.3K ||
Message 3 of 19
Established Contributor

Re: App first then garden... or garden first?


@CreditInspired wrote:

Yep, go for it! I personally don’t like Citi because their redemption is $25.00K


FTFY

500K+ TCL / 800+ FCOs
Message 4 of 19
Community Leader
Senior Contributor

Re: App first then garden... or garden first?


@Obscure-Expert wrote:

@CreditInspired wrote:

Yep, go for it! I personally don’t like Citi because their redemption is $25.00K


FTFY


Thank you for the correction  😂🤣😂.

GOALS: Garden til APR 2020 and 800 Club



JUN 2019: EX 788, TU 794, EQ 779
DEC 2018: EX 777, TU 783, EQ 799

|| AmX Cash Magnet $25K || NFCU CashRewards $20K || Macy's $20K || Discover IT $18.7K || NFCU CLOC $15K || NFCU Platinum $12.5K || AmX ED $11.5K || CitiCostco $7K || CitiDC $6.3K ||
Message 5 of 19
Regular Contributor

Re: App first then garden... or garden first?


@Obscure-Expert wrote:

Might as well start building in some additional foundational cards.  Maybe for diversification hit up BOA / Barclay's for a third.


I already have 2 cash back cards: BOA Cash Rewards (3% on gas, 2% on groceries) and the Amazon Prime Visa (5% Amazon).  I'm just looking for something to cover the things that are only 1% on the other cards.

 

I also have a BOA Travel Rewards which is going in the sock drawer, since I have no use for travel rewards.  I almost never travel, especially now.  I'll probably close this one eventually.

 


@CreditInspired wrote:


Hi and welcome to MyFICO

 

Go for option 1. That’s what I did...

 

Yep, go for it! I personally don’t like Citi because their redemption is $25K. 


No pitfalls going this route?  No likelihood that the bank will pull my credit after I close and see another inquiry and go what the heck?

 

I figure apping right after closing gets all the dings out of the way, and in 2 years I'll be inquiry free and clean, while if I wait a year or two, that's another year or two of dinged credit... not that it really matters if I'm going to be gardening anyway.  But then, who knows what I might do in a year or two... I might need another card. LOL.  I need to stay off this site so I don't.

Gardening starting 8/1/19
Goal: 0 Inquiries and diamond spade
July: EX 813, TU 821. 3 CCs, 1 mortgage, 5 inquiries.
August: EX 789, TU 785. The roller coaster ride has begun.
Message 6 of 19
Valued Contributor

Re: App first then garden... or garden first?


@DivorcedAndBroke wrote:

Hi folks, I'm newly registered here but have been lurking for some time, and am looking for some advice.

Here's the scoop. I'm recently divorced and refinancing my house to pay off the ex's half of the equity. The closing is in a couple weeks. I'd like to get a cash back card that's more than 1% for everything and am eyeing the Citi Double Cash as my 1st choice and Chase Freedom Unlimited as the 2nd.

 

I'm thinking of three possible options:

 

1. Apply for the card immediately after mortgage closing, or a few days afterward, before the mortgage has a chance to report. That way I only have the score ding from the inquiries and not for the new account at application time.

 

2. Wait for the mortgage to report, then apply. This will probably result in lower scores due to a new account. Additionally, one of my existing accounts, a HELOC, will be paid off and closed.

 

3. Garden for a while to let things settle, and then apply for the card 6 months to a year after closing, or even longer (2 years?)

 

Vital stats: EX FICO 813, TU FICO 824 as of 6/19. I don't have a free way to get EQ FICO, but I expect it's over 800 as well. AAoA 6 years, 8 mos. AAoOA (open accounts only) is 9 years 11 months. Open accounts include 3 credit cards and a HELOC. The HELOC will be paid from refinance funds and closed after the closing. 2 inquiries per CRA in June from mortgage shopping and app, 2 other inquires that are >1 year. Most recent card app was a Chase Amazon Visa in early 2018, and no other card apps in many years so I'm at 1/24. Reported utilization 1-3% (I use AZEO).

 

Once I get this new card, I expect to garden indefinitely, as I don't want or need any other credit products in the foreseeble future.

 

So, what do the experts here think I should do? Apply immediately after closing, wait for the mortgage to report, or garden for a while?

 

And then, my other decision, what card do I go for? Citi DC is my first choice, since it has 2% cash back, but the Chase FU has sign-up bonuses (I think the current one is 3% for a year), 0% intro APR for purchases, and the points can be transferred the Sapphire products for travel (which I don't plan on doing since I almost never travel).  I tend to keep my cards a long time and rarely app, so long term benefits weigh more for me than short term bonuses.

 

Thanks!


Welcome To myFICO Forums!!

your name dose not give me warm fuzzy feeling, "@DivorcedAndBroke"

was there many years ago. sounds like you are on a great recovery & Congrats on The House.

another 2% Card is The PayPal 2% Cash Back. I believe no minumum Cash Back Redemption, Usually no SUB (If you Like Synchrony Bank?) I I personally do not hold that card, as I have The DC.

SP Cli's on The PayPal2% probaly would grow faster than the citibank DC.

just throwing one more option out there.

But The Chase FU with 3% 1st year, and a sign up Bonus, looks awful good.

I got a huge Limit From Chase on The FU a while Back.

 

just my random thoughts.

 

 

 

Message 7 of 19
Regular Contributor

Re: App first then garden... or garden first?

Paypal MC is a possibility too... didn't think of that one, thanks.  I'm not big on Synchrony though.

 

I've never asked for a CLI ever in over 30 years, so those don't matter to me.

 

CFU is tempting with the 3% for a year, but I'm not a big spender and it would then be 1.5% after the 1st year.  Citi DC is probably the best bet for me long term.  I already have a Chase card and I prefer to diversify.  If I traveled and planned on using UR points in the future I'd definitely put the CFU higher on my list, but I don't.

 

I still have a little under 2 weeks to decide.

 

Thanks folks!

 

Gardening starting 8/1/19
Goal: 0 Inquiries and diamond spade
July: EX 813, TU 821. 3 CCs, 1 mortgage, 5 inquiries.
August: EX 789, TU 785. The roller coaster ride has begun.
Message 8 of 19
Established Contributor

Re: App first then garden... or garden first?

Well, you could go Disco Miles and collect 3% for the first year as well.

 

WF has changed things up as well where they dropped the minimum redemption requirement and allow you to use points for purchases after they post.  The only requirement is to have enough points to cover it 100% not a partial redemption.

500K+ TCL / 800+ FCOs
Message 9 of 19
Regular Contributor

Re: App first then garden... or garden first?

Not interested in Discover or Amex.  I prefer cards that are accepted everywhere. Smiley Happy

 

And WF... well, if I expressed my feelings about that bank here I would probably get banned.    Smiley Very Happy

 

Are there any benefits to waiting/gardening first?  No one seems to have chimed in on that aspect of my query.

 

Also, does Citi ever offer promotions/SUBs on the Double Cash?  Like, if I wait a few months, a promotion might pop up?  I know Chase changes up their SUBs from time to time... don't know about Citi.

 

Gardening starting 8/1/19
Goal: 0 Inquiries and diamond spade
July: EX 813, TU 821. 3 CCs, 1 mortgage, 5 inquiries.
August: EX 789, TU 785. The roller coaster ride has begun.
Message 10 of 19
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