I'm new to the community but not new to messing with credit. Having spent most of my 20's (I'm 38) ignoring my credit and being very reckless, I am in the process of rebuilding it with a goal of buying a house with my VA loan this coming August (current mid-fico of 626). In the past couple of years I have opened up a Discover It (secured $200), Cap One QS1 ($500), Credit One ($500) and a Cap One Plat ($500). I'm doing all I can to keep the utilization reporting at ~10% to the beaureaus. MY question is this. I have recently recieved an "invitation to apply" for a co-branded USAA Rewards AMEX card. Should I apply now or wait until after August and after I close on my house? I am kind of in the mindset to garden until my QS1, Dsico and Credit One (I know, I know. Its not the best but I took what i could get) inquiries fall off later on this year and then try for a Chase (Freedom?) card. I dont think the "invitation to apply" is the same as a pre-approval. Am I wrong there? Does the pre-approval indicate a higher chance of being issued the card? Thank ya'll in advance!
If you're in the process of buying a home I would stay clean until you close on the house and have the keys in hand. After that assess where you're at with you credit reports and go from there.
Unfortunately invitations are not preapprovals. I get one from my bank every year for thier branded card. I tried once and was denied. My experience with AMEX is they like scores in the 680s, so I wouldnt burn my report with a hard pull for it. I would garden your cards for now, in 6 months all your cards should give you a CLI/upgrade you to a standard card. Having the patience to garden is hard, ive learned that the hard way, but its worth it in the long run.