I want to first thank this community for providing a valuable public service to those seeking to repair or expand their credit. I've been a lurker on this forum since April of this year. What I have learned here these past months has been invaluable to me and my immediate family.
In April, I applied for a Dell Preferred Store Credit Card and was instantly approved for $4000. I was a bit shocked and emboldened by this approval which led be to apply for another card. I applied for and was instantly approved for a Chase Southwest Rapid Rewards Plus card with a SL of $2000. Prior to this approval, I had not applied for a card since 2007. I did not realize at the time that the behavior I had just exhibited was an "app spree." A week after those approvals, I applied for the American Express Blue Cash EveryDay card on the recommendation of CreditKarma (prior to realizing their approval odds are based on user history plus compensation). At the time, my true Experian FICO score was 650. Utilization was 44%. Inquiries were at 2. AAOA was 10 years. I had 4 derogs--30 late student loans (3 years old/since cleared).
I was approved for the BCE card with a SL of $500. It was at this point that I realized I should slow down and subsequently found this forum. The BCE approval was subject to what I have since learned is the AMEX equivalent of credit steps. I was not granted the terms I applied for. Instead, I was given a conditional offer without the bonus offer associated with spend and wording that indicated that I may receive an auto-CLI after the fifth statement posted, if I paid more than the minimum. I accepted to get in with AMEX.
The fifth statement has come and gone and I have not received an auto CLI. I likely jumped the gun as I requested a CLI on day 61 (with the knowledge I've gained from this forum). The denial reason was there was not enough history with American Express. I then requested a CLI at day 91 (I started from day 62). That was also denied. My denial explanation was the same as the day 61 denial reason. I understand no one is entitiled to a CLI but I still wanted one. During this period I put $3000 in spend through the card and PIF each month. However, I used the card sparingly after the day 61 denial.
After reading that existing members often do not get a hard pull for new credit accounts and if you are denied it is likely a soft pull, I decided to see if I could get another card. My offers were showing the Gold Delta SkyMiles and Platinum Card, however, I checked under my parent's account and brother's account and saw the same offers and did not think it was a real offer.
I decided to apply for the Gold Delta Sky Miles and noticed a "You are pre-approved" message after pressing the apply button. I added my income and was approved for $2800. Note, I clicked the apply link for the Platinum but didn't go through with it. It also said "You are pre-approved." I understand it is easier to get charge cards than it is to get revolvers. I'll wait for a targeted offer before going for that card.
I felt it was important to give these DP to anyone who has a $500 AMEX SL as I know it is sometimes difficult to grow it. Also, this did not result in a hard pull as all of my accounts are frozen.
Current Stats (True FICO):
Ex - 713
TU - 720
Eq - 726
AAoA - 7y5m
Util - 23%
Two weeks ago, I received my first pre-approved offer from Discover ever. Note, I permanently opted out of mailers back in 2005 when I was brand new to credit because they were a nuisance. Now I want them. Go figure. I was intrigued so I applied with only EX and TU opened. I got a message to call and I did. They pulled EQ which is abnormal for my area. My EQ was on ice and has been since before the breach. Since the breach, it has been impossible to reach a person. I originally locked it over the summer from my phone but I never received an unlock code. Anyway, I told them I would sort it out and call back. I'm chasing travel bonus points these days not cashback so after I couldn't get through to EQ, I decided to skip the inquiry and AAoA ding and move on. I froze all of my accounts.
This evening a very pleasant Discover CSR gave me a follow-up call (I was napping, borderline incoherent, and sounded like Darth Vader) and asked if I was able to de-ice EQ. I told them no and they asked if I'd like them to pull EX. While on speaker phone, I de-iced EX (they make it so easy) and replied, "Sure, why not." After a couple of seconds delay, she came back with a $9000 SL approval. Needless to say that woke me up.
Apologies for the novel...but really, a special thanks to you all for your information, data points, advise, and encouragement. There are a lot of lurkers out there and you are helping us all.
Off to the garden I go...
NFCU Go Rewards - $19,600 | Discover it - $9,000 | BOA Cash Rewards - $5,000 | Barclaycard Arrival + - $5,000 | BFSFCU Platinum Cash Rewards - $5,000 | Dell $4,000 | Chase SW Rapid Rewards Plus - $3500 | American Express Gold Delta SkyMiles - $2800 | Target - $500 | American Express Blue Cash Everyday - $500
Haha, I see what you did there. Thanks sir! Your post have been very informative these past few months.
Congrats on your new cards!!! For your BCE, did you carry a balance each month (of the initial 5)?
Congratulations! All the details will help someone.
Congrats! Nicely done!