I totally understand about the long term benefit and I agree completely. So would the Gold Card be a better choice than Zync?
Right now I've been just using my debit card as cash, I plan on just using my AMEX for purchases and obviously paying them off in full every month, as if I was using a debit card. But by the sound of it, the gold makes it seem like it's for all the big boys and big girls.
your going to have to charge a lot more on the gold to make up for the higher annual fee in rewards.
I've seen others over on Finance globe who have gotten an Amex with as many as 14 inquiries on their EX report. However, i would wait awhile for all those inquiries to settle a bit before going right after the Amex. Creditors don't like to see alot of ramped up credit within a short peroid of time. It's called "Bust Out". Maintain what you have for now, or wait another 6-12 months. Certainly with your scores, you should be okay then. At least that's what i would do.
Inquiries shouldnt be an issue. I had over 30 of them when I got approved for Zync, but my income is in 6 figures and i'm not sure what role did my income play.
Luckily, the fee for the Gold is (usually) waived the first year. You can bail out right before the one-year anniversary to avoid the fee. (Be sure to cash out any rewards first. )
But I think that the combo of youth, short history, and inqs-gone-wild might put the Gold out of reach for now.
OP, I think if you let the dust settle for now and do your research, and polish up your reports (low util, increased age, etc), you will probably be a good match for AmEx on down the road. And maybe you'd get the Zync now, I don't know. But the Gold...
Wow, that's a bunch of inquiries! And I see that you've discovered the hard way that Cap One pulls all three reports.
Anyway, hard inqs display for two years but are only counted for FICO scoring for one year. Some lenders don't seem to mind them, while others would need smelling salts upon seeing your collection. At any rate, the longer the period that you can go without acquiring any new ones, the less you will look like a ticking time bomb. Rightly or wrongly, lenders often view multiple inqs as signs of desperate seeking of credit, and they don't want to be the ones to get burned if you're in some sort of financial trouble.
With a 95% rejection rate and a large roster of wasted inq piling up, please stop applying for credit and sit tight for a bit.
Or at least let the amex zinc be the last attempt-regardless of the results. I'm guessing amex would deny for short history and unusually large amt of inq.
If you had 10 inq I'd say go for it but not 20+ YMMV.
The Credit Card ACT requires lenders to determine whether applicants have the income to handle the credit they're granted.
No guarantee on whether you'll be approved after six months. But you'll certainly look more reassuring to lenders. And if they ask you what on earth all the inqs were about, you can always use the "young and stupid" line. Many of us have used that one at some point!
At any rate, right now your best buy is just to shine up your credit profile.
I had six inquiries on my Experian report, a decline from AMEX for Gold, and a decline for CLI on a TrueEarnings. Apped for Zync and was approved - instant decision online. I really don't think the Zync is FICO or inquiry sensitive.
As far as your desire to get AMEX Gold personal, please try to calculate the annual fee and your expected MR rewards. The gold (IMHO) is an ugly card with limited benefits UNLESS you spend tens of thousands of dollars on it every year. At your age and income, this is highly unlikely for a personal gold card.
I have the Zync with restaurant pack and eco pack. I get 2X MR points from grocery shopping at health food grocers and 2X MR from eating out (fast food, fancy restaurants, coffee shops, etc). The annual fee is only $25 (I pay $50 with the custom packs), it's less uglier than the personal Gold card, and it's MUCH easier to get. Why not drop the fantasy for Gold and get a Zync - IMHO the Zync is the superior card anyway with its add-ons if you know how to use it.