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18 and Clean, Thin File

sapphireminer
Frequent Contributor

18 and Clean, Thin File

Hi Everyone,

 

This is my first time posting on this forum; however, I have been reading up for the past few months. I just turned 18 in October of 2016 and decided, as a legal adult in many instances, I should start building credit now for the future. I have a full time job and make a very decent salary, so I wanted to take my finances in my own hands by opening a brokerage account, Roth IRA, and 401(k) with my company. 

 

So, a few days after my birthday, I went into my local Chase bank in Manhattan and spoke with my banker about getting my first credit card. She suggested I apply for the Freedom Unlimited, which we both said at the same time, as I had already done my research Smiley Very Happy. So, I applied in branch and a few days later recieved a meager $500 credit limit. Still, better than nothing!

 

Fast forward two months later, I am planning a vacation and the plane ticket I would like to purchase is $509 with tax Smiley Frustrated. So, I figured, why not go in and see if an increase could be arranged. I had paid my card off religiously with heavy usage, letting both months report at $35 or 7%. I also spent over $2500 in those two months, 5x my limit. My banker said it was a good idea and that I should give it a shot. She handed the phone to me to speak with the CSR and I was instantly denied. We then called the recon line and again, denied. Looking back on it, I realize it was silly to ask w/o at least 6 months, let alone a year with Chase. So my banker (who also happens to be a Private Banker, but I am not a Private Client) whispered to me that I should run up the street to Captial One and apply for one of their cards ASAP.

 

So, I did just that and low and behold I got their Journey card with an even more meager $300 limit. Oy vey! Anyways, I am enrolled in their credit steps program, so we will see in 4 months what kind of increase will come my way. If it is petite, I will reach out to the EO and explain my situation and maybe they will understand. I would like to see at least $1000, just for the purchasing power of a plane ticket or long hotel stay for a buisness trip.

 

Now I have the itch for more (not the best with my thin file, I know)! I have 2 INQ on TU (Cap1 and Schwab), 3 INQ on EXP (Cap1, Chase, Chase), and 3 INQ on EQF (Cap1, Chase, Chase). Anyways, I have done some reading that Amex likes clean, thin files. But of course, not too thin. I saw 3 people on this fourm approved for PRG with only 6 months and 2 of those then approved for BCE. I plan to apply for a PRG first and BCE same day to take advantage of the soft pull for second app, once my Cap1 hits 6 months and Chase 8 months. My mom also said it was okay to add myself as an AU on her new Cap1 (June 2016) with $3000 limit (7% reporting). Being an AU on that card, given an eventual higher credit line on my personal Cap1 (after steps hits), and having my Chase card, do you think it will then be a good time to apply with Amex? This plan is also dependant on the new card member offer at the time because I know Amex only now gives out 1 per lifetime, so if it really isn't that great, I will keep waiting until I see one that tickles my fancy. Therefore, the plan might be delayed for a few months.

 

Fast forward two years from now. My ultimate goal: the Chase Sapphire Reserve. Once my first Chase hits two years, I think I want to go for this baby. Assuming I will be in the garden until then and have no new CC accounts, my total will be 4/24 (well techincally 3/24 if you don't count my AU status I will have on my mom's card, but I see sometimes Chase can still count them). By then, I hope to have an account greater than or equal to $10k with heavy, perfect use of my other cards (doubt that will ever happen with my Freedom Unlimited Smiley Wink). But this is just in the clouds now.

 

So, any advice about my Amex idea or any other helpful tips?

 

Thanks!!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Message 1 of 48
47 REPLIES 47
peghede
Valued Contributor

Re: 18 and Clean, Thin File

Stop this nonsense with banks and the bs they give...go with NFCU and win already.

Message 2 of 48
tydawg
Valued Contributor

Re: 18 and Clean, Thin File

First off welcome, I am also young too, 19. There are a few of us on the forum here. I have felt a lot of love from Chase so sorry to hear about your decline with the Credit Limit Increase but on to what you can to do improve. With that being said if you do any kind of shopping on Amazon apply for the Store Card right now seriously! 5% Cash back unlimited! The store card is different than the Visa Sig card being offered by Chase the store card is offered by Synchrony bank and they are fairly accepting of young profiles and here is the kicker they will continue to give limit increases based off a Soft Pull so you can request on every 3 months and often get a very decent limit right off the bat. Many posters have been able to get multiple thousand. Another option is to join a credit union I personally recommend Navy Federal they have a great app and are EXTREMELY generous with their starting lines, they were my very first credit card and I got a starting limit of $15k!!! Anyone can join them now through a "backdoor" you do have to pay a small membership fee to join a nonprofit organization but it is well worth it! Details on this can be found here NLUS / NFCU LINK

Message 3 of 48
tydawg
Valued Contributor

Re: 18 and Clean, Thin File


@peghede wrote:

Stop this nonsense with banks and the bs they give...go with NFCU and win already.


Lmao a condensed version of what I said Smiley Very Happy

Message 4 of 48
DeeBee78
Valued Contributor

Re: 18 and Clean, Thin File

I think there is one thing people forget when starting out their credit journey: It takes TIME!

 

As you build your payment history and show responsible usage, the floodgates will open. Stop trying to do too much too soon or your score will suffer with useless INQ's and no one will extend you credit, or you'll get stuck with toy limits.

 

Garden for 6-12 months, and get thae SP Capital One CLI's. Heavy PIF usage through a Capital One card (running it up to the limit and paying it off several times a month) will get you a substantial CLI, sometimes automatically. Executive Office recon works very well if you don't get a decent CLI and have the usage to support it. Less than two years ago, my Quicksilver was a $300 QuicksilverOne. After a couple of mediocre CLI's, I sent an email off to the EO, and boom - 3K, then 5.25K, then 6.5K. 

 

And on a side note, how many business trips are you taking at 18? Smiley LOL

Message 5 of 48
_summer78
Frequent Contributor

Re: 18 and Clean, Thin File

You might get a decent limit with BCE. I've noticed that they like thin files. You'd probably get a decent limit with them. I think I had about 10 months of credit history and they gave me my highest limit. Capital One is also really good for people just starting out. Although your limit will be very low Credit Steps will grow quickly.

You're only 18 and just got your first CC in Oct. It hasn't even been 6 months yet. It was foolish to think you'd get approved for high limits or that Chase would CLI. Credit isn't a race. Slow down and don't try to apply for everything you want at once. Let your credit grow. You're on a great path already. Good luck in the future with your goals

Message 6 of 48
fltireguy
Valued Contributor

Re: 18 and Clean, Thin File

Why wait 6 months with cap one for credit steps? Ask for a CLI after the 3rd statement cuts, you might have some luck there - and I will not affect your steps CLI
NFCU $60.4k/PenFed $22.5k/Commerce $15K/53 $11K/Synovus $14K/BBT $11K/CapOne $12K/DCU $7.5K/BMO $7.5K/Chase $14.5k/Cabelas $10K/ and many many more!
Total CL $398600, plus car and RV loan.
Ooh. Ooh. Getting closer to that $500K mark!
Message 7 of 48
sapphireminer
Frequent Contributor

Re: 18 and Clean, Thin File

Yes! Thank you for all the feedback! The reason for my being so adamant about my CL is for purchasing power because I do spend a fair amount (but I do save quite a bit too!), especially since I have no living costs being at home and having a relatively high salary. And with larger purchases that I have had to make with my debit card, I don't get rewards. I have looked into a few banking options that offer rewards or APR on checking, but for all the different hoops and requirements I need to jump through to get that, it doesn't make sense for me at the moment.

 

That is why PRG looks like a good option for me in a few months, as it is a charge card and (hopefully) Amex will be more inclined to approve larger purchases I will make, especially with travel. I will see about that! I'm going to give it a few months and will report back then with updates to see what Cap1 will offer me in terms of credit limit increase.

 

Thanks again so much everyone!

Message 8 of 48
sapphireminer
Frequent Contributor

Re: 18 and Clean, Thin File

"Executive Office recon works very well if you don't get a decent CLI and have the usage to support it. Less than two years ago, my Quicksilver was a $300 QuicksilverOne. After a couple of mediocre CLI's, I sent an email off to the EO, and boom - 3K, then 5.25K, then 6.5K."


 

Oh good! I'm glad to hear that! I have already racked up over $1000 with multiple payments to the card (pretty much every single day) and that's only in one month. I mean I don't want some huge credit line that I know I won't get or want just to have it. All I reasonably would like in the next few months is just one line that is $1000 or near there for large purchases. So, I'll give it some time and we'll see.

 

On a side note, I do at least once a month for work, since our other offices are across the country, but it certainly ain't so glamorous!

Message 9 of 48
BronzeTrader
Valued Contributor

Re: 18 and Clean, Thin File


@sapphireminer wrote:

Yes! Thank you for all the feedback! The reason for my being so adamant about my CL is for purchasing power because I do spend a fair amount (but I do save quite a bit too!), especially since I have no living costs being at home and having a relatively high salary. And with larger purchases that I have had to make with my debit card, I don't get rewards. I have looked into a few banking options that offer rewards or APR on checking, but for all the different hoops and requirements I need to jump through to get that, it doesn't make sense for me at the moment.

 

That is why PRG looks like a good option for me in a few months, as it is a charge card and (hopefully) Amex will be more inclined to approve larger purchases I will make, especially with travel. I will see about that! I'm going to give it a few months and will report back then with updates to see what Cap1 will offer me in terms of credit limit increase.

 

Thanks again so much everyone!


Someone said really well, you need time to build your credit. Depends on your life style, not everyone needs a Chase CSR or AmEx Platinum. A lot of folks choose AmEx BCE or ED instead. 

 

I put my 18-year (now) old as an AU of my Chase IHG two years ago (when he was 16). When he applied for CC at our bank (BofA), he received an instant $3,000 CL two months after his18 birthdy. Then we applied and received 4 more CCs and now he has a total 5 CCs with $9,000 CL. But no love from Chase and he is on my Chase Unlimited CC. This is one of the reasons Chase did not give him a card since he is on two of my Chase CCs. 

 

Just give it some time. And do not rush things.

 

Message 10 of 48
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