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question about timing an app for amex plus recent rebuilding work.

New Member

question about timing an app for amex plus recent rebuilding work.

Hey guys long time lurker first time poster. I have been working on my credit for the last 2 years slowly but surely and am finally at a place where i have no more collections. i do have a few lates but they are from more than 2 years ago now.

So here is my question and I appologize for the wall of text I am about to embark on.


First off current scores from today on my fico



647 went down 7 points today i think due to new penfed card appearing on my credit report yesterday.


619 this goes up and down last few months high of 635 low of 615


620 high of 642 this month but that was from amex site not from my fico. different scoring model i am sure. i.e. my fico 9 is lower than whatever score amex uses.


I know amex pulls ex and its somewhere around 640 for amex. I am not applying now as i just got recent cards in Jan/ feb with penfed, sportsmans, and target. I got these cards because i have been paying off old debt, i enrolled in a debt management plan which was great for one payment a month but horrible for closing accounts after payoff.  i am 2 years into a 3 year plan and with those accounts closing as I pay them off I wanted to get some new cards just to cushion the blow of loosing so much credit age.


So my dilemna now, I am an au on a amex platinum card since 2017.  its the only card I kept through the debt management program and I use and pay off about 1k a month on it consistently. no late payments excellent payment history for the last 4 years.  i want to apply for my own amex as opposed to the auth user.  I know I am borderline approval and wanted to know if my excellent history with them and amex seeing the payments coming from my bank account monthly will help me.


Other factors.

income 150k

all debt 18k


credit debt vs available 12k used  out of 26k total available.  all my new credit cards are being payed off in full zero balance.

the 12k is split from 2 old cards included in my debt management plan one 5k out of 8k the other 7k out of 10k.  I am not in a rush to pay these off because they will be closed as soon as I pay off with debt plan and further drop my age. I figure I pay them down slowly with the plan while giving my new accounts time to age. 


So my plan moving forward, let my new accounts age until atleast july the 6 month mark. continue using and paying off new cards in full monthly. Penfed was the most recent. they initially denied but I made it through with a recon. (thanks myfico! wouldnt have known that was an option!)  they gave me 5k on a gold card. I figure, I just wait and see if my continued use and good payment history can get me the illusive offer during one of there quarterly marketing sprees. if I luck out I can apply for another gold and hopefully just have that applied to my current limit and raise it with a soft pull. 


after July I want to apply for an amex card. I was originally targeting delta skymiles gold or platinum but honestly that was based on that apparently having a lower credit score requirement.  If in the next 6 months my score continues rising slowly i would love to be able to pull the trigger on a higher tier card. my goal card with them is maybe a blue cash but I am not sure what score I need for that.


Sorry for all the background. To reiterate what I am actually asking  What score is good to shoot for on Exp for delta skymiles or for blue cash.  Secondly does amex take into account your history as an AU with good spend and perfect payment history?


Also any pointers on soft pull CLI would be helpful but i have done the research on here allready for the open cards i have.

i.e. Penfed wiat for offer. 

Sportsman's Guide pull trigger immediately or wait 90 days then every 90 days after.

target nothing you can do just hope you randomly get picked. seems like some have gotten increases with good spend. and others even get invited to non store brand card after working there way up. 


If i am missing anything please let me know.  or if my strategy for my last two cards under debt management is wrong i am open to hear other ways to handle that as well. Thanks for your time guys!  I appologize if this is all over the place

New Member

Re: question about timing an app for amex plus recent rebuilding work.

ok on further review here i see Amex does not look at your history as an authorized user. which sucks considering the thousands of dollars i have spent with them over the last 4 years. 


I think it might be better to spend the money with penfed since they took the chance on me and just grow that relationship more. Thanks for those who read and i guess you can close this since i found the answer. I am still open to any tips on the debt management program thing. hate loosing these accounts after paying them off.

Message 2 of 7

Re: question about timing an app for amex plus recent rebuilding work.

Hi @KC2020 and welcome to the forums.


Just a few thoughts regarding the background you've provided:


- Payments on the AmEx card that you're currently under as AU, do not count toward improving the odds on your own card.  However, as long as your payment history reflects on time on CRs, that's a step in the right direction.

- I would definitely try to significantly lower the amount of current balances (depending on the DMP arrangements) so that your profile is more optimized.

- While the score you quoted would be a minimum 'guidance' toward qualifying for Delta Gold, there's other profile considerations, scores alone are not the only factor.  Aim for higher FICO scores (preferably >700) for better results and the card of your choice (something that aligns with your spending) vs. obtaining a card just to "get a foot in the door".

- PenFed quarterly offers typically yield on cleaner profiles, so while the PenFed Gold was a great success, temper your expectations on future quarterly offers.  Some folks don't receive them for a year or two.

- For the Sportsman's Guide Visa CLI, if you didn't request it when you received the card or during activation, the minimum timeframe is around 6 months to request the first one.

Message 3 of 7
New Member

Re: question about timing an app for amex plus recent rebuilding work.

thanks Finstar!

appreciate the feedback. would it be beneficial to pay off the other debt quicker even though i know the account will be closed as soon as I pay it off? Or is stretching it out as my new accounts age better to limit the aaoa hit i will take if all my older accounts go away. just trying to gauge wether i should take the medicine now which would lower the amount of interest i am paying and lower my score. Maybe pay them down significantly but not completely off while i am giving my other accounts time to age?

Message 4 of 7

Re: question about timing an app for amex plus recent rebuilding work.

Sure, no problem @KC2020.


Let me ask you this - is the arrangement with DMP to have the accounts closed once the payoff is concluded, whether you accelerate this or complete by the plan timeframe?

As far as aging goes, even if the accounts are closed, they will still be factored into your AAoA until they drop off your CRs.  Closed accounts can remain on CRs for up to ~10 years in most cases.  The only loss would be the available credit that factors into your overall utilization ratios.

Message 5 of 7
New Member

Re: question about timing an app for amex plus recent rebuilding work.

oh wow i did not know that! thanks finstar. and yes it was they would be closed as soon as they are payed off regardless of the time left. there is no penalty or anything for paying early just a reduced interest rate while in the plan. I had no idea that it would not affect the average age atleast not in the near term. thats great news. I feared my age would drop like a rock with all these accounts closing.  Thank you so much for that tidbit. Will work on getting these payed down as quick as I can and continue gardening while i pay these off. Appreciate the response that is the best news ever! with those out of the way my ratio will likely be under 10 percent. I have been sitting here thinking I was being smart paying this interest lol. So glad I actually asked a question tonight!

Message 6 of 7

Re: question about timing an app for amex plus recent rebuilding work.



So, I would approach the situation (based on your finances) to pay less interest if you can.  The longer it's drawn out, the more it feeds their bottom line.  If you can accelerate the process, great.  If not, at least you know your options.  But, regardless, your closed accounts will still count.  

As far as AmEx goes, for future CC opportunities, give things time once these accounts are paid off (or close to it) and reassess things when you're ready to apply.  Come back anytime for advice so at least you're armed with information for the best approach.

Message 7 of 7
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