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PenFed - inquiry/new account sensitive?

learningtheropesofcredit
Established Member

PenFed - inquiry/new account sensitive?

Since it looks like anyone can get into PenFed, I'm thinking of starting a checking account and applying for a credit card once approved for a checking account.  

 

Is there anything special to know about PenFed and trying to get a card, i.e. have a certain amount of money in the checking account, have it for a certain amount of time, etc.?  Also, are they inquiry and/or new account sensitive?  Hard to get a card from?

 

Do they do instant approvals or is the norm to wait?  

 

Also, to get a credit card, what kind of FICO are they looking for?  Are some unsecured cards harder to get than others with PenFed?

10 REPLIES 10
FinStar
Moderator Emeritus

Re: PenFed - inquiry/new account sensitive?

Bear in mind that results are profile-specific, even with pre-approved mailers or internal solicitations, folks still get denied so temper expectations. With that said, there's reports of individuals being denied for too many inquiries/new accounts, while others can pass with flying colors.

 

There can be immediate decision results while other apps can be queued for further review.  The UW can vary for a couple of products, meaning if you don't qualify for a Visa Signature card, you could be offered a different or lowered-tiered product in some cases. Moreover, having a large set of deposits doesn't really influence their decision per se.

 

If your overall profile, scores and income can support an application with PenFed, I'd say go for it.  You can always apply after membership has been established.

Message 2 of 11
4sallypat
Valued Contributor

Re: PenFed - inquiry/new account sensitive?

Having started with PenFed over a year ago, I opened an online savings account only.

Getting the PenFed account approved was a bit tougher than Cap 1.

I had to send digitally my: DL, SS Card, income verification (W2) in order to get immediate funds transferred from an external account.

 

Then later, I found out that in order to get a FICO score from PenFed, you had to open a checking account, which I did.

Once I got the debit card, I was able to see my score - they use a EQ 09 model.

 

I have been receiving mailers for their credit products but have not yet applied due to a car lease that I am buying out soon and looking at their car refi product.

 

Here's my score from PenFed:

Screenshot 2021-10-02 at 6.54.08 AM.png

 

Message 3 of 11
NYC_Fella
Frequent Contributor

Re: PenFed - inquiry/new account sensitive?

I just did this. Opened a checking account with a $500 deposit on Friday and applied for a CC on Monday. Instantly approved for $7.5K even with a BK7 on my record. EQ 9 score was 745.

Message 4 of 11
coreyb80
Senior Contributor

Re: PenFed - inquiry/new account sensitive?

I opened an account with Penfed back in 2018.  Wasn't able to get in until this year in which I was able to land their PCR with a $2.5K SL and then purchased a vehicle in August of this year.  Recently approved for a gold card Monday with a $7.5K SL and a 9% APR.  All of this while I was at the end of my chapter 13.  They're a pretty good union and yes they will provide you with an instant approval if the profile meets their standards.

Message 5 of 11
mark3038
Established Contributor

Re: PenFed - inquiry/new account sensitive?


@learningtheropesofcredit wrote:

Since it looks like anyone can get into PenFed, I'm thinking of starting a checking account and applying for a credit card once approved for a checking account.  

 

Is there anything special to know about PenFed and trying to get a card, i.e. have a certain amount of money in the checking account, have it for a certain amount of time, etc.?  Also, are they inquiry and/or new account sensitive?  Hard to get a card from?

 

Do they do instant approvals or is the norm to wait?  

 

Also, to get a credit card, what kind of FICO are they looking for?  Are some unsecured cards harder to get than others with PenFed?


I am new with PenFed. I now have three cards with them. I started with them in June 2021. I have a lot of inquries and a lot of new credit yet they did instant approvals for me. They seem like they are kind of easy to get into. However, I see many posts on here that people try over and over again to just be denied every time. I do not have any deposit accounts with Pen Fed. I may do so in the future, but I have three approvals without any other banking relationship with them.

 

I am now in the garden so no more new cards for me and I  have enough now for sure. If you are going to try for a new card I would suggest Pen Fed for sure but as stated prior to this by others. You just never know what they can see that will deny you. 

Thanks

Mark

Please note; My postings are my opinion only. You can accept them or reject them. Thanks, Mark
Message 6 of 11
Brian_Earl_Spilner
Community Leader
Mega Contributor

Re: PenFed - inquiry/new account sensitive?


@mark3038 wrote:

@learningtheropesofcredit wrote:

Since it looks like anyone can get into PenFed, I'm thinking of starting a checking account and applying for a credit card once approved for a checking account.  

 

Is there anything special to know about PenFed and trying to get a card, i.e. have a certain amount of money in the checking account, have it for a certain amount of time, etc.?  Also, are they inquiry and/or new account sensitive?  Hard to get a card from?

 

Do they do instant approvals or is the norm to wait?  

 

Also, to get a credit card, what kind of FICO are they looking for?  Are some unsecured cards harder to get than others with PenFed?


I am new with PenFed. I now have three cards with them. I started with them in June 2021. I have a lot of inquries and a lot of new credit yet they did instant approvals for me. They seem like they are kind of easy to get into. However, I see many posts on here that people try over and over again to just be denied every time. I do not have any deposit accounts with Pen Fed. I may do so in the future, but I have three approvals without any other banking relationship with them.

 

I am now in the garden so no more new cards for me and I  have enough now for sure. If you are going to try for a new card I would suggest Pen Fed for sure but as stated prior to this by others. You just never know what they can see that will deny you. 

Thanks

Mark


I didn't even know this was possible since the rate is partially based on membership length.

    
Message 7 of 11
mark3038
Established Contributor

Re: PenFed - inquiry/new account sensitive?

Yup, three new cards over a two month period with Pen Fed and I had no prior account with them. They did make me open some sort of savings account with $5 so I did that. Live and learn I guess

Thanks

Mark

Please note; My postings are my opinion only. You can accept them or reject them. Thanks, Mark
Message 8 of 11
jcooks
Established Contributor

Re: PenFed - inquiry/new account sensitive?

Here is me experience (denial) with Penfed

https://ficoforums.myfico.com/t5/Credit-Card-Applications/Penfed-Denial-w-o-successful-recon-i-think...

 

After my application, I did apply for an Auto Loan and was instantly approved for their lowest interest rate, so I can't tell you what happened or why it happened.  It's very difficult to judge Penfed as I've read a lot of people getting approved for their cards with CO and BK's within 2 years.  I was pretty much denied by late payments from almost 5 years ago as my worst derog.  The other reasons were my 2 new cards lowering my AAoA.  Also, they didn't like that I had a few small balances on my other cards.  I would recommend if applying, practice AZEO when application goes through.

Message 9 of 11
MisterWives
Regular Contributor

Re: PenFed - inquiry/new account sensitive?

Unfortunately, no one has really cracked Penfed's approval criteria it is really all over the place that you can't see a pattern. It took me a year and three applications. I want to believe after leaving a few hundreds in the saving account for months helped, but really I have no idea. They do seem to prefer more established credit user with some history I don't see them as most peoples first card.




Wants: PenFed Pathfinder Rewards(4x pts travel), PenFed Platinum Rewards Visa Signature (5pts Gas, 3pts Restaurants and Grocery), U.S. Bank Cash+ (5% Categories), Chase Freedom Flex (5% Rotating Categories, 5% Travel, 3% Restaurants)
Message 10 of 11
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