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amex for student / low income

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folks19
Frequent Contributor

Re: amex for student / low income

Ok, wow, @Anonymous, that was very helpful! I never knew a lot that. What credit card do you reccomend I get now? I have a 1 discover card and my CB loan, which I've made 1 payment so far. My Experian FICO score is about 670. Do you think I should apply for a new card now or wait? If yes, what card should I get?

Also, just to mention, I had checked for pre qualify on capital one, and it said they nothing to offer at this time, while an the same time, when I checked on amex, I was pre qualified for the the blue cash everyday, the gold, and the green... wired. So I'm a bit afraid to apply.

Message 11 of 21
Mv350
Valued Contributor

Re: amex for student / low income


@folks19 wrote:

Ok, wow, @Anonymous, that was very helpful! I never knew a lot that. What credit card do you reccomend I get now? I have a 1 discover card and my CB loan, which I've made 1 payment so far. My Experian FICO score is about 670. Do you think I should apply for a new card now or wait? If yes, what card should I get?

Also, just to mention, I had checked for pre qualify on capital one, and it said they nothing to offer at this time, while an the same time, when I checked on amex, I was pre qualified for the the blue cash everyday, the gold, and the green... wired. So I'm a bit afraid to apply.


If you prequalified with Amex for the BCE, and you have a 670 EX8. You should be good. Amex tends to like thin files. What they are weary of is dirty files, with negatives. You will see better scores boosts when you begin to have more of a credit mix. Honestly 1 INQ will not kill you if denied, other than a slight sting to your ego. What will happen if approved, is start to have the better credit mix. You have your credit builder loan which is good, while it's open. You have 1 card, but 3 is where you start to see the most influence over your scores. Capital one will pull all 3 CRA, which is 3 INQ for one card. That hurts more. 

Message 12 of 21
Anonymous
Not applicable

Re: amex for student / low income

If I were you, I would first look into a card with a local credit union. Build that relationship - it can really be invaluable throughout your life. 

Despite the prequals, I would be leery of apping for Amex with a $6k income - historically Amex has been travel-based and therefore oriented to higher-income individuals. They obviously have non-travel offerings but I'm not sure they'll approve with that income. If you do apply, I would stick strictly with no-AF cards, but in your shoes I would pick up a card from a credit union and hold off on Amex until out of school and working, with an income that is higher.

Message 13 of 21
Duke_Nukem
Established Contributor

Re: amex for student / low income

Exactly a year ago, my 18yo (at that time) applied for the Amex BCE with only a $6k income, and she was accepted with a $2000 starting credit limit.  At that time, she only had a Disco Chrome Student card that was opened 4 months prior and no loans.  However, she was an authorized user (AU) on several of our cards so she had a bit of an edge on her scores.

 

Normally, I would have said go for it, but with the current environment we are in it may be best for you to wait it out a few more months.  If you have an immediate need, a single HP won't be disatrous so you might give it a shot.

 

Good luck on whatever decision you make, @folks19 !


Message 14 of 21
Anonymous
Not applicable

Re: amex for student / low income

Devil's advocate: 

 

You have almost nothing to lose from some HPs as a low-income student

 

You have the pre-qual; many get cards without pre-quals showing up

 

Amex is thin-file friendly

 

If you do get approved, you have the opportunity to start with a high-limit potentialed card.

 

Message 15 of 21
Anonymous
Not applicable

Re: amex for student / low income


@Anonymous wrote:

If I were you, I would first look into a card with a local credit union. Build that relationship - it can really be invaluable throughout your life. 

Despite the prequals, I would be leery of apping for Amex with a $6k income - historically Amex has been travel-based and therefore oriented to higher-income individuals. They obviously have non-travel offerings but I'm not sure they'll approve with that income. If you do apply, I would stick strictly with no-AF cards, but in your shoes I would pick up a card from a credit union and hold off on Amex until out of school and working, with an income that is higher.


I agree with this ^^^, but do not apply for CC after joining they have to see if you are customer first and going to have that establish relationship. 

 

Income plays a huge role in some institution, even some CU take that into consideration. I haven't applied to the Amex because I also was a college student and had less than 10k in income, but some lenders were much more opened to giving me CC since I started out with my CU credit card. 

 

My friend waited till he started his full time position in order to apply for the Amex Blue Cash Preferred, at the time he had a secured card to establish that credit history.

Message 16 of 21
folks19
Frequent Contributor

Re: amex for student / low income

So I see some people wrote that amex are thin file friendly. Does anyone have experience with applying in my situation? The truth is that it's just the income I'm concerned about and not my score.

@Duke_Nukem that information about your daughter getting approved was very helpful! Do you know what her score was?

Message 17 of 21
Duke_Nukem
Established Contributor

Re: amex for student / low income

Her score on Experian Fico 8 (which is pretty much the only bureau Amex does the HP on) was 787 at the time of application.  That was what I call an "inflated" score because of the AU accounts she was listed on pulled it up so high.  Her "real" score didn't report until 6 months after opening her first credit account, the Disco card in February.  The "real" EX 8 score dropped to 710 in August (which also happened to be when her Amex reported for the first time).

 

Also, even though my now 19yo has great scores and her income has increased a bit, Amex has not been very forthcoming with the CLI's (credit limit increase).  That may be because of her age, her income level, or both.  She was only recently able to get a $600 increase (went from $2,000 to $2,600), while her older college student sister immediately got the 3x CLI after 60 days (applied for Amex BCE at the same time but with higher income).


Message 18 of 21
folks19
Frequent Contributor

Re: amex for student / low income

thanks again, @Duke_Nukem . my score is still far from the 780's, but i still may give it a try after i make more loan payments. i'm hoping that my score will go up by a lot of points in the next few months because i will be gathering a lot of positive information and no bad stuff (paying down my loan, making more on time payments, and raising my age of credit).

it's also interesting that her score dropped my more then 70 points when she got her amex card. is that normal?

 

i can imagine that with a low income, one won't get much of an CLI. but i don't really care now because all i want now is to get my foot in the dooe with amex. once i'm done with school, i'll ask for an increase if i don't get one.

Message 19 of 21
Duke_Nukem
Established Contributor

Re: amex for student / low income

I went back to check her older sister's EX credit reports for comparison.  Their scores were almost exactly the same until her sister got some student loans for med school that reported in August last year.  Those loans may have actually boosted the older sister's scores (neither had any loans prior to that, and no loans on a report actually causes a penalty in points).  The older sister's first Amex report to EX also occured the same month (August) but it included that 3x CLI which heavily reduced the utilization % well below 1% total UTI.

 

Her score went from the "inflated" 787 to the "real" 752 after the 6 months from opening her first credit account (also Disco student Chrome).

 

I've noticed that my DD's scores to be significantly higher than many young profiles that should have been similar, and the only real advantage I think my girls have is that we have them as AU on 4 of our cards (which are always at $0).  Maybe that is something you can look into to help boost your scores, get added as an AU on a decently aged card that is used very seldom?


Message 20 of 21
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