For me, there is no real science...some cards have committed monthly charges (utililies, insurances, kids programs, etc.)
I used my AMEX platinum and Delta cards for travel, etc. when I eat out, or shop groceries and gas, car maintenance/repairs, etc. I use differing cards for each. So, basic living expenses, are good enough to keep them happy. I always PIF...cause I hate debt...
I personally just use the cards if/when they benefit me, and that's that. I don't force usage to make an issuer happy or anything like that. To me if the product doesn't benefit me to the point where I am forcing myself to use it, it's time to evaluate getting rid of it. At the very least, I would totally understand and not really care if I got a CLD on a card I barely used, because, well, I barely use it, so it's fair.
I would focus on your reward goals, use the cards that benefit that, and don't overthink it. At the end of the day we are all just numbers to the banks so I wouldn't go out of my way to make an algorithim "happy" if the card isn't useful. It's not like a human is reviewing your account monthly and deciding whether you're making them happy or not.
@pizza1 LOL! I haven’t forgotten what these forums have meant to me and what I was able to contribute all those years ago. I still come on now again to look up certain topics for fame and friends, etc. Bottom line is I’m doing very well and it’s great to see the forums are in great hands with new Mods and longtime contributors still plugging away.
Thanks for your reply. While I’m trying to stack as many RR points as possible, I will show some love to the others monthly. I appreciate it.
@ByrdMan , Im glad to see that you still come back to the forums from time to time, but more importantly that you're doing well!! Life has a way of steering us all in different directions from time to time, but it's SOOO nice to see others from early days pop back on We have a great team of Mods and CLs, and still have a quite a few members from the "early days" .
Like you, this forum was a blessing (and a curse, lol) to my rebuild post BK in 2013, and I'll be forever grateful to all the advice, and it's about the giving back now. We hope you'll come back soon! Good luck in your RR point accumulation
Bingo, UncleB! That's exactly my point. I want to have the fire power should I come into a situation where I need it. I don't want the CLs slashed, because I'm no longer feeding the card $4-$5K per month. I've been through credit hell and back over the past decade, due to the credit crunch and the business that I was in at the time. I had one main card that I had to carry a balance on for about a year, while I was trying to keep everything else from going to crap. I paid them on time every month, but during some manual looks at my overall credit reports, they canceled my CL, even though I was paying them aces. Prior to that point, I was PIF $2-3K per month. I was at 65-70% util for about a year and they killed me for it. So, yes, I'm a bit concerned (not overly), just a bit. I'm on a mission to get completely debt free in under three years. The only thing I owe is my huge mortgage, so I have no interest in overspending or carrying a balance. I haven't paid a penny in CC interest in about five years. Thanks for having my back on this one.
If you don't use a card (enough), why would you be worried about the credit limit getting slashed? If you spend $5 per month on a card with $30000 limit, you don't need that $30000 limit. The obsession on this list with high credit limits is bordering on ridiculous. Use your cards in whatever way is useful to you and let the lenders figure out what credit limit they want to give you. More than likely all your worries are unsubstantiated.
I have several relatively large credit lines that are only used occasionally, but on those occasions they are needed. Wanting to make sure those credit lines are there when I need them to be isn't ridiculous at all.
Some lenders are more sensitive than others, so the OP's question is valid and his concerns are warranted.
Thanks for this real-world information. I just got an AU card for my DD on my Venture card. She can use it for fuel and school books to keep that one happy. I want to keep that card, because CapOne stuck with me through the crappy years. They never increased my CL by a ton, but they didn't close me out either. I got the Diamond Resorts Card, because I bought a timeshare through Diamond in Maui a couple of years ago, and they offered me the card. I will now use it to pay the annual maintenance fee.
No need to worry about it too much.
I am one of those people you mentioned (150K+ total CL) and don't spend much (monthly total CC payment typically less than 2k ).
Only thing I try to do is to make sure that I put something (might be $5) on each every year.
No issuer (amex, chase, citi, or discover) has lowered my CL yet. Their risk control dept seems to be more worried about people who might not pay them back than people don't spend enough. Would be interesting to hear if anyone have stories of certain issuer CLD stating a reason of 'little usage'.
Also, as already mentioned above, the impact of a CLD seems (to me as well to be) very minimal anyways, because:
0. It is unlikely for you to need the CL if the issuer find 'load factor' alone justifies CLD.
1. It is also unlikely for all banks to CLD you in sync simply due to this reason.
2. Most cards nowadays (visa signature, infinite, and of course any charge card) are NPSL and will allow once in a while big charges (higher than the stated CL if one is stated) to go through (sometimes even without human override) provided you've been using credit responsibly and the spending pattern is considered reasonable (i.e. something like charging $30000 at a supermarket is not)
You're right about the crazy 20% APRs. I'll never revolve at those rates. Paying down my mortgage with reckless abandon. This summer, I'm looking to get a HELOC (had to close my other one with the refi) for about $125K. I'll use it in the exact manner you've discussed. Need a new deck? Put it on the CC for rewards, and get it onto the HELOC as soon as humanly possible. Great to hear from you Revelate!
Whoa long time Byrdman good to see you!
Anyway everyone else’s point is basically correct: drop some random recurring charges if you have them or otherwise take them out for a Starbucks run or similar every six months or so.
Right now the credit market is still all sunshine and rainbows (mostly, Amex reallocation of lines not withstanding) and until we see a recession or other financial crisis I don’t expect to see much in the way of credit portfolio tightening in the current environment... maybe if interest rates start going down and banks start refinancing every mortgage they can again, maybe.
I am somewhere north of 175k in total personal revolving CL now, but really I only spend maybe 3k/month average 95% of which are on two Chase cards, and PIF and haven’t had a problem with a lender-initiated CLD yet.
Have to say though with the APR’s on rewards cards if there is a situation where I can’t write a check for it (or don’t want to, out of work cash hoarding for example) I self-refinance that with a quickness to my HELOC.
Ultimately I could make do with my old goal number of 50k CL but after a point approvals of the 20/25 and even 30k variety have been falling out of the sky in my semi-limited apps over the last few years.
FWIW, I can contribute this tidbit... when it comes to Capital One, they were once thought of as a 'rock' (never CLD) but a year or so ago there were reports of some with high credit lines ($20k+) being chopped down to $10k, but there didn't seem to be much consistency in who was chosen, i.e. several with really large credit lines and only token usage were left unscathed.
That said, I don't recall anybody with a credit line under ~$20k being impacted (there might have been an outlier at $18k, I'll have to dig a bit more). In any case, the CLDs were all to $10k, so if your Capital One cards are less than $20k you probably have nothing to worry about with them.
I'll defer to the community on the others; it looks like you've received good info so far.