bichonmom: Just to be clear, I haven't gotten anything from Alliant yet except a membership approval; I still have to apply for the credit card with them. I will be doing this as soon as I get my information packet in the mail, which they said should be within 7-10 business days. I made a $10 donation to the Orphan Foundation of America via PayPal to be eligible, and it was very easy. I was not instantly approved because they needed to verify my identity further; the next day I received an email detailing what they needed from me. They asked me to fax/mail them three additional proofs of identity (two photo IDs and one non-photo ID). I faxed them a copy of my driver's license, passport, and car registration, waited about 15 minutes, then called the rep that had emailed me. I told her I was just wanting to check and make sure the fax went through and that it was what they needed, and after checking, she assured me that it had gone through, that they would review my info, and send me an email later in the day. 30 minutes later I got an approval email.
I am hoping that whenever I get my information packet, there might be a pre-approval offer for a credit card in there; obviously I could not be pre-approved when I applied online since they required more information to verify my identity. I am keeping my fingers crossed, and we'll see.
I think their pre-approvals are exclusively online.
There are numerous Alliant threads with a wealth of information:
Just an update; I got my information/welcome packet in the mail...no pre-approval offers or anything, but from what I've read I wasn't expecting any. I called and applied for a card with them, and found that while they would have to do another hard pull, I would be approved for whichever card I was eligible for (unlike, say, CapitalOne, where if you're not eligible for an upper-tier card, they will not use the same inquiry for a lesser card---at least not for me they wouldn't). I was approved for the Platinum Visa, but because of my thin credit file, my limit is only $500. The rate the rep quoted me was 10.24%. He did say that I should use the card, then call back and request a credit limit increase in 90 days or 6 months and they would bump it up for me. I believe this will be a hard pull, correct? I forgot to ask.
My current address on my credit file is different from my actual address (I still receive mail there and have moved a few times in the past few years, so I haven't changed it with the credit burueas), so he had me fax in proof of residency/income (last two pay stubs and a utility bill). He did say that it was to just to verify that I had a source of income (as opposed to verifying the amount I had quoted him, I suppose?). Two business days later (today), I logged into Alliant's website and now I have the card listed under my accounts.
Also, yesterday I received another envelope in the mail from Alliant; an "H-4" form: "Form for credit score disclosure exception for loans not secured by residential property". It states an Equifax score of 733, which I assume is a FICO score, but it doesn't say. This would be a slight drop in my score, but I suppose that would make sense considering I have put a handful of inquiries on my file in the past month or so.
Having established a card with my local credit union as well as Alliant, my next step was going to be to get an account with PSECU, but apparently they are no longer offering membership to out-of-state residents. Is there any other way to obtain my Experian FICO score, especially a method that would involve me getting another revolving account (two birds, one stone)?
I still want to get one more revolving account to round out my stable, as it were, for credit building. To recap, I currently have one $500 card (Alliant Platinum Visa) that reports to all three agencies, and one $2,000 card (NCSECU Visa) that reports only to Equifax. I may try for a card with my other credit union (Atlanta Postal Credit Union), since I had such good luck with NCSECU. The APCU card is a points rewards card though, so it may be tougher to get approved for. I am also considering a Shell card, since I drive quite a bit. Barring either of those, a secured Bank of America card. What do you guys think?