Best credit card deal

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Topic Author
Hulk
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Best credit card deal

Post by Hulk »

Hi all,

I need to get a credit card to qualify for a home mortgage. I thought I could do a manual underwriting (former Dave Ramsey follower) and tore up my credit cards years ago. I am actually fine with that decision, but apparently you cant do a manual underwriting on a jumbo loan (>$417K) and I have to have a current line of credit to get a mortgage. Which is crazy because I am as low risk as it gets (debt free, assets, 20% down, mortgage amount <2x annual income). But so be it, ill play the game.

So if I'm gonna get one, I want the best perks I can get. For all you churners out there, what are your recs? I dont necessarily care what the perks are, just best bang for my buck I guess. I do like to fly southwest (bc you can change itinerary at no cost) and I hear you can get extra points if you also do a business card(I have K1 and 1099 income so should be able to get an extra business card). And also a companion pass has been suggested, for $59/year.

appreciate the thoughts
Last edited by Hulk on Thu May 19, 2016 12:16 pm, edited 2 times in total.
frugalecon
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Re: Best credit card deal?

Post by frugalecon »

If you fly Southwest, you might want to consider the Chase Sapphire, since you can transfer their Ultimate Rewards points directly into the Southwest program. It also has a host of other benefits.

I recently started flying American a lot more, following the American-USAir merger. (I had been a United loyalist.) I am trying a Citi Prestige card. It comes with a hefty $450 fee, but it also offers a $250 credit for airline purchases per year. You get that on January 1, not on your account anniversary. So, in the first full year I will get two of those credits, more than off-setting the fee. You also get 50,000 "Thank You" points upfront. That is the rewards currency. They are redeemable for air fare, with an especially favorable rate of exchange on American (1.6 cents per point). It appears you can book any ticket at the posted fares, and pay with the points. I have already booked a fair amount of travel through the end of the year using these points, and it was pretty seamless. You also get access to the American Admirals Clubs when you are flying on an AA flight. I really like having the clubs to retreat to, even if I wouldn't be willing to pay a lot for the privilege.
mhalley
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Re: Best credit card deal

Post by mhalley »

I believe Clark Howard say that unless you are a very frequent flier, then airline mile cards are not worth it. He generally likes cashback cards. If you are getting the cards just to improve credit rating, I would get at least 2, and utilize less than 20% of the credit.
You can use this site to help pick one, but since you don't have one now it probably won't be that helpful. Perhaps you can use what you spend using your debit card as a guide, or else click the browse by cash rewards button.

http://www.creditcardtuneup.com/

You might consider getting a small personal loan or a home equity loan and pay it off rapidly to give some other type of credit on your credit report. You also might sign up for credit karma to follow your score.
Drew777
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Re: Best credit card deal

Post by Drew777 »

If you fly Southwest then I would get two Southwest cards with 50,000 signup bonuses. There is the Premier, Plus, and Business version. You can apply for two in the same day with only one hard pull. Once you get 110,000 points in a calendar year you will get a companion pass good for the rest of the calendar year and the following year. So if you can get two Southwest cards you'll only need to earn another 10,000 points.
Topic Author
Hulk
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Re: Best credit card deal

Post by Hulk »

but since you don't have one now it probably won't be that helpful[/color].

I am actually doing a bit of long term planning. We are moving in a year, and will probably rent for the first year in the new city so I have 2 years to build my credit. And actually my credit was fine, somewhere above 740 which was the lowest risk category (finished paying off tons of debt a few years ago) but it didn't matter. I had to have an active line of credit, which I didn't. (the only reason I know all this is bc with almost bought a house here but, thankfully, didn't and now are moving.

thanks for the link! will definitely check that out
Last edited by Hulk on Thu May 19, 2016 12:18 pm, edited 1 time in total.
Topic Author
Hulk
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Re: Best credit card deal

Post by Hulk »

Drew777 wrote:If you fly Southwest then I would get two Southwest cards with 50,000 signup bonuses. There is the Premier, Plus, and Business version. You can apply for two in the same day with only one hard pull. Once you get 110,000 points in a calendar year you will get a companion pass good for the rest of the calendar year and the following year. So if you can get two Southwest cards you'll only need to earn another 10,000 points.
Nice. Thats what I was looking for but wasn't quite sure the details. What happens after that second year? can you continue with the companion pass somehow?
southbay
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Re: Best credit card deal

Post by southbay »

I like the 2% cash back Fidelity card.

I personally think the Dave Ramsey advice to never use credit cards is terrible, unless someone really has no self control with credit cards. (I acknowledge that some people have a spending problem and probably shouldn't use credit cards) But for most people, instead of saving 2% on ALL your purchases by paying with a credit card, you save nothing. Plus, debit cards and cash cannot be easily disputed later. Credit card transactions can. And, by charging everything you get all your expenses neatly documented. Not to mention that paying by credit card is now usually the fastest way to get through a transaction.

I also use a 2% cash back business card for business whenever paying by card is possible, and our business spends six figures on the card monthly. The cash back adds up to tens of thousands of dollars a year.
Drew777
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Re: Best credit card deal

Post by Drew777 »

Hulk wrote:
Drew777 wrote:If you fly Southwest then I would get two Southwest cards with 50,000 signup bonuses. There is the Premier, Plus, and Business version. You can apply for two in the same day with only one hard pull. Once you get 110,000 points in a calendar year you will get a companion pass good for the rest of the calendar year and the following year. So if you can get two Southwest cards you'll only need to earn another 10,000 points.
Nice. Thats what I was looking for but wasn't quite sure the details. What happens after that second year? can you continue with the companion pass somehow?
You have to accumulate 110,000 points again.
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Kosmo
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Re: Best credit card deal

Post by Kosmo »

I'm curious to read the responses, because I'm interested in a new credit card also. But I did want to provide 1 comment:
Hulk wrote:Which is crazy because I am as low risk as it gets (debt free, assets, 20% down, mortgage amount <2x annual income).
You are actually a higher risk than you think because in the eyes of the lender you have no demonstrated ability to pay debt. Lack of debt accumulation is not the same as being a responsible/low-risk borrower.
alaskantraveler
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Re: Best credit card deal

Post by alaskantraveler »

If you are not a churner, and not interested in learning the ins and outs of frequent flyer programs a 2% cashback card is your best choice. Consider Citi Double Cash.
Topic Author
Hulk
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Re: Best credit card deal

Post by Hulk »

Kosmo wrote:I'm curious to read the responses, because I'm interested in a new credit card also. But I did want to provide 1 comment:
Hulk wrote:Which is crazy because I am as low risk as it gets (debt free, assets, 20% down, mortgage amount <2x annual income).
You are actually a higher risk than you think because in the eyes of the lender you have no demonstrated ability to pay debt. Lack of debt accumulation is not the same as being a responsible/low-risk borrower.
Oh bull. Are you serious?? I didn't just say debt free. I also said assets and 20% down. How do you think I accumulated assets and that much cash, by being irresponsible? PMI drops off at 20% equity because the risk of the bank losing money on a foreclosure is pretty much gone at that point. And if they did lose money on a foreclosure even with 20% equity, I have assets they can take. And I actually have a great credit score, just no active line of credit. So I have demonstrated an ability to pay debt. And the loan amount is low in comparison to income. Banks offer far higher loans that 2x income.

I am super low risk regardless and its evident. But if opened a credit card with the bank then I quality. So 5 seconds after I open a card I'm now lower risk. I don't think so. Its idiotic.
Last edited by Hulk on Thu May 19, 2016 12:07 pm, edited 1 time in total.
Topic Author
Hulk
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Re: Best credit card deal

Post by Hulk »

alaskantraveler wrote:If you are not a churner, and not interested in learning the ins and outs of frequent flyer programs a 2% cashback card is your best choice. Consider Citi Double Cash.
this or fidelity is probably what Ill do. Thanks!
bta15
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Re: Best credit card deal

Post by bta15 »

I churn cards recreationally, not very serious about it. I use my points for travel exclusively and do not worry about cashback. If I could only have one card and had to keep it forever it'd be the Chase Sapphire Preferred. You can xfer points to Southwest, British Airways, Hyatt and others as well as redeem for cashback.

You wouldn't be able to get the Southwest companion pass that way though. If that is the route you want to pursue you have to get the southwest cards. I believe there is a time of the year that's better to earn it, like if you earn the companion pass earlier in the year you get it all that year and the next. You'd have to google it though. Unfortunately SW doesn't fly to where I live so I've never really looked into it.

As far as getting the companion pass again, if you are married you could have your wife get the two cards after you lose it and you cancel your cards, the process can be repeated in a 2 year cycle in theory forever (or until Chase revises their policy).
JCrack
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Re: Best credit card deal

Post by JCrack »

mhalley wrote:I believe Clark Howard say that unless you are a very frequent flier, then airline mile cards are not worth it. He generally likes cashback cards. If you are getting the cards just to improve credit rating, I would get at least 2, and utilize less than 20% of the credit.
You can use this site to help pick one, but since you don't have one now it probably won't be that helpful. Perhaps you can use what you spend using your debit card as a guide, or else click the browse by cash rewards button.

http://www.creditcardtuneup.com/

You might consider getting a small personal loan or a home equity loan and pay it off rapidly to give some other type of credit on your credit report. You also might sign up for credit karma to follow your score.
I'm not a frequent flier and I'd have to say I disagree. If you're willing to put in a bit of time and research, your points go much further with say the Chase Sapphire Preferred than they do with a cash back card like the Amex Blue Cash Preferred.

Some may look at it from the perspective that if you have a travel card, you'll be inclined to spend those points on trips you wouldn't otherwise take which will cause you to spend money you wouldn't otherwise spend, but I have enough out-of-region weddings, family reunions, etc each year that it makes sense and I don't find myself taking trips "just because I have the points".
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Hulk
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Re: Best credit card deal

Post by Hulk »

bta15 wrote:
As far as getting the companion pass again, if you are married you could have your wife get the two cards after you lose it and you cancel your cards, the process can be repeated in a 2 year cycle in theory forever (or until Chase revises their policy).
Oh thats slick. I like that. You've piqued my interest on churning :beer
Last edited by Hulk on Thu May 19, 2016 12:19 pm, edited 1 time in total.
surfstar
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Re: Best credit card deal

Post by surfstar »

Hulk wrote:
alaskantraveler wrote:If you are not a churner, and not interested in learning the ins and outs of frequent flyer programs a 2% cashback card is your best choice. Consider Citi Double Cash.
this or fidelity is probably what Ill do. Thanks!
Those are both great. One more option: Capitol One Quicksilver
1.5% cashback, but you get a $100 bonus after $500 in spending in the first 3 months. So it comes close to the 2% cards (depending on spending), but is better for travel, as ALL Capital One cards have 0 foreign transaction fees, and this card has no annual fee. Only a few cards are 0 forex without an annual fee, so get one of these if you travel at all.

I have the Citi Double Cash, personally.
inspector00
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Re: Best credit card deal

Post by inspector00 »

Most of the better deals these days require around $4000 in spending on the card in the first 3 months it's open. How much can you spend in that period of time will determine which card to go for.

Also Airline/Hotel cards can be great if you plan to use them.
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RyeWhiskey
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Re: Best credit card deal

Post by RyeWhiskey »

For everyday cards I'd go for the CapitalOne Quicksilver, Citi Doublecash, or Fidelity 2%. Personally, I use the first as my backup card. That said, in my opinion the absolute best cash back card will arrive in a month or less and it offers 4% back on gas, 3% back on restaurants, and 2% back on Costco, with 1% on everything else. Obviously it's the Costco card and you'd need a membership but I'd say it's well worth it. :beer
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HIinvestor
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Re: Best credit card deal

Post by HIinvestor »

I have the CapitolOne Spark business visa. It gives 2% cash back on everything. It is the card we use most. We also have Chase Sapphire preferred which provides travel insurance and primary car rental collision coverage.

We have a slew of credit cards and gave s never used home equity line of credit that cost us nothing to open or keep active.

We gave a Barclay MCard Sallie Mae card that gives 5% cash back on groceries, gas and Amazon purchases, up to $500 charged per category/month.

Makes no sense to fume about illogical credit policies--advanced planning is a great idea.
jayjayc
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Re: Best credit card deal

Post by jayjayc »

OP,
Since this is your 1st credit card, I would opt for a no annual fee card and hold onto it for a long time. Credit history is important. I'm a big fan of the Chase Sapphire Preferred but you may find that it's not worth the annual fee after a few years. You'll have to evaluate whether it's worth the annual fee on a yearly basis. If you get a no annual fee card like some of the ones already mentioned, then it's a no brainer to just hold onto it.
Jack FFR1846
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Re: Best credit card deal

Post by Jack FFR1846 »

You may end up with more airline miles than you'll ever be able to use. However, I never run out of uses for the 2% that I get back from my citi double cash card.
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brajalle
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Re: Best credit card deal

Post by brajalle »

Since you don't have a current credit card and have followed Dave Ramsey's advice to date, I'd suggest you be a little slow on jumping down the churning rabbit hole. Churning & travel hacking can sound really good (and can be really good), but I don't think most people are really prepared for what it actually entails. It's one of those - people like the sound of it, but it's a specific audience that will actually follow through IMO. If you want to take advantage of your financial responsibility and earn some extra benefits, then there might be some better/simpler options.

With that in mind, if you have some specific travel partner or spending category or special perks you're interested in - there might be specific cards that can be recommended. If you're more interested in some general benefits, you might consider Citi's cards. They are probably the most generous credit card issuer (Amex is a semi-close 2nd) in terms of extra card benefits. I'm talking things like travel protections, purchase protections, and extended warranties.

You should ask yourself -
- Do you want mostly straight cash back (or close to it), do you want travel benefits/specific retailer benefits, do you want unique perks, or do you want some of a couple of these?
- If straight cash back - do you have a bunch of spending in a certain area (ie groceries, rental cars, office supply stores, gasoline, airfare, hotels, everything, etc)?
- If the others - what retailers, airlines, hotel companies, etc do you regularly spend a ton with or do you want special perks from?
- How complicated do you want managing the cards, perks, redemptions, etc? There's also a big difference in recommendations if you're looking for 1 card in your wallet, 2 cards, 3 cards, or if you're ok with having 10+ cards, etc.

There's been some good cards mentioned so far (and many more not mentioned), but I'd ask yourself those questions first before jumping in! Of course, the great thing is that you can just close cards that don't work and open new ones later, but it's still better to be pointed in the right direction to start.

Based on what you've already said though -

Southwest - My parents like to fly Southwest also, but there's a difference between liking to fly Southwest and being someone who takes a ton of business or leisure trips! A Southwest card may be good for the latter, but I'd never recommend one to my parents.

Straight Cash Back - This one gets a bit tricky, because there's the (typically 2%) flat cash back cards (of which the Fidelity Visa and Citi Doublecash are the most prominent), and then there's the category spends. The major categories you typically find are - Grocery, Gas, Eating Out, Office Supplies, and Pharmacy. There are sometimes other ones (ie as specific as online advertising). Specific stores and websites may also be options (ie Amazon, Expedia, UPromise, Amtrak). Think about the largest category of spend you have each year - or the largest couple of categories.

Ff you're interested in a few categories, it may be better to carry a couple of cards. Ie, the Citi Doublecash is a great general card, but I'm not sure I'd use it much unless I only wanted a single card in my wallet. There's benefits to combining several cards also, ie combine a couple Citi cards, a couple Chase cards, or a couple of Amex cards, and you might unlock transfer partners, higher redemptions, and a ton more flexibility. It also increases the complexity of managing it all - so be sure you have the appetite for it.
inbox788
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Re: Best credit card deal

Post by inbox788 »

Hulk wrote:
alaskantraveler wrote:If you are not a churner, and not interested in learning the ins and outs of frequent flyer programs a 2% cashback card is your best choice. Consider Citi Double Cash.
this or fidelity is probably what Ill do. Thanks!
Why don't you have credit cards? What do you intend to do with the one you get besides using it to get a mortgage? Do you plan to use it? Most benefits come with charging to the card, so if you're not going to use it, it's a moot point. Do you intend to keep the line open? If so, get one with no annual fees. If you don't plan to keep it, get one that has a fee, but free the first year and lots of sign up bonus. Take the bonus and run, and cancel before the annual fees for the next year are here. However, with your lack of credit, you might not qualify.
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TxAg
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Re: Best credit card deal

Post by TxAg »

I just switched from Chase Freedom to Chase Freedom Unlimited (1.5% cash back). I received a $150 bonus and another $25 for adding my wife. Then, a few weeks later I noticed Fidelity's 2% cash back card. I don't travel enough to warrant the Southwest card but I have friends who use and love theirs.
simmias
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Re: Best credit card deal

Post by simmias »

Keep in mind that you can redeem Southwest Rapid Rewards points for gift cards if you don't travel. So, for example, if you sign up for the Rapid Rewards Plus card you get 50,000 points after a $2,000 spend in 3 months. You can convert those into $500 in Amazon gift cards, which is as good as cash to me. Minus the $69 fee you're still looking at a sign up bonus of more than $400. They also have Target, Lowe's, Best Buy and a ton of others.

There are also several $200 cash back for spending $500 in 3 months cards offers that still pop up. I just saw one for the Bank of America Cash Rewards Card. If you're not going to use the credit card much, a nice sign-up bonus probably makes more sense than recurring cash back for purchases.
protagonist
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Re: Best credit card deal

Post by protagonist »

I disagree with posters who suggest a 2% cash back card over a miles/points card.

True, for most people it is probably better than accumulating mileage points for day to day spending, because even if you can do better than 2% on the cost of a plane ticket with points vs. paying with cash, in most cases you don't do much better, you deal with lots of restrictions , and you are forced to use specific airlines. In my mind, that significantly reduces the value of the points.

But that said, the real bang for the buck is not in day to day spending, but rather in the very lucrative promotions. If you play your cards right, for example, you can often get a RT ticket to Europe just by spending $2500-5000 in three months, which you probably would do anyway. A RT ticket to Europe in the summer will easily cost over $1000. A 2% cash back card would only give you $50-100 for the equivalent spending.

Cash back cards only make sense if you never fly or stay in hotels, if you are not eligible for promotions, or if you just don't want to play the game.

If you know you want to fly Southwest, a Southwest card or Chase Sapphire makes the most sense.
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oldcomputerguy
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Re: Best credit card deal

Post by oldcomputerguy »

protagonist wrote: Cash back cards only make sense if you never fly or stay in hotels, if you are not eligible for promotions, or if you just don't want to play the game.
I must respectfully disagree. I do fly occasionally (business and pleasure). I have two cards right now that I use. One, which I was using for everything up until a month or so ago, is a Capital One that gives double points for travel, the other (which I just obtained) is a 2% cash back card from Fidelity. They both give a 2% return (as long as I redeem the Capital One points for travel, 1% from that card otherwise). Both give these returns on any and all charges made. The difference is that I might want to redeem the points for something other than travel, and the Fidelity card gives me that option. And if I decide I want to book a plane ticket or other travel using Fidelity points, I simply use the cash-back to pay for it, no different bottom-line than using Capital One points.

That being said, I'm not a card churner and never will be, I find I don't have that temperament. But to my POV, 2% cash back versus 2% travel points back seems a no-brainer, the freedom to use cash versus the limitation to use points only to buy travel.
protagonist
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Re: Best credit card deal

Post by protagonist »

smartinwate wrote:
protagonist wrote: Cash back cards only make sense if you never fly or stay in hotels, if you are not eligible for promotions, or if you just don't want to play the game.


That being said, I'm not a card churner and never will be, I find I don't have that temperament. But to my POV, 2% cash back versus 2% travel points back seems a no-brainer,
I agree, smartinwate. You don't want to play the game, and thus a 2% back card is best for you. The game is not for everybody, despite its high potential rewards with no risk.

Plus I would NEVER recommend card-churning (or credit cards in general) to anybody who does not reliably pay back their balance in full every month. 18-21% interest rates are the reason the banks offer such lucrative promotions in the first place.
KelKapel
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Re: Best credit card deal

Post by KelKapel »

I am actively churning cards and about to get the Southwest Companion pass. Here are your two best options (in my opinion):

1. Southwest Companion pass. Open 2 Southwest cards when they are offering 50,000 sign on bonus (they are offering them RIGHT now, so I did Premiere and Plus), spend the 2k each within 90 days, and then you can use the Companion Pass for the remainder of the year it was earned in and the entire next year. You can change your companion 3 times during that time, so choose wisely. This will put you at 104,000 points. You will have to either take a flight to earn the last 6k or spend that on the card. There is also a backdoor option of transferring points to a hotel chain and then to Southwest but I don't suggest this since you lose points overall. Here are a few links to read up on it if this is what you choose.
http://www.thesimpledollar.com/southwes ... nion-pass/
http://www.extrapackofpeanuts.com/south ... nion-pass/

2. Chase Sapphire and Chase Freedom. The Chase Sapphire is consistently rated the best card and the Freedom does a specialty 5% cash back every quarter. This quarter its grocery stores and last quarter was gas stations. I believe the next quarter (starting in July) is restaurants. These two cards work great together since they are both Chase and you can combine the points with no problems, simple click of a button. If you get these, I highly suggest adding an additional cardholder and using the card at least once. If you don't you would be missing out on about easy points.
BW1985
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Re: Best credit card deal

Post by BW1985 »

protagonist wrote:I disagree with posters who suggest a 2% cash back card over a miles/points card.

True, for most people it is probably better than accumulating mileage points for day to day spending, because even if you can do better than 2% on the cost of a plane ticket with points vs. paying with cash, in most cases you don't do much better, you deal with lots of restrictions , and you are forced to use specific airlines. In my mind, that significantly reduces the value of the points.

But that said, the real bang for the buck is not in day to day spending, but rather in the very lucrative promotions. If you play your cards right, for example, you can often get a RT ticket to Europe just by spending $2500-5000 in three months, which you probably would do anyway. A RT ticket to Europe in the summer will easily cost over $1000. A 2% cash back card would only give you $50-100 for the equivalent spending.

Cash back cards only make sense if you never fly or stay in hotels, if you are not eligible for promotions, or if you just don't want to play the game.

If you know you want to fly Southwest, a Southwest card or Chase Sapphire makes the most sense.
Just hit my spend on the Sapphire with some medical bills I would've had to pay anyways. Now applying for the Southwest card, if I end up not using the miles I'll just get $500 in Amazon or Target GC's. After I hit 5 cards churned I'll switch to Citi since Chase only allows 5 in last 24 months. If we want another Chase card we'll switch to my wife's name.
Chase the good life my whole life long, look back on my life and my life gone...where did I go wrong?
an_asker
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Re: Best credit card deal

Post by an_asker »

Kosmo wrote:I'm curious to read the responses, because I'm interested in a new credit card also. But I did want to provide 1 comment:
Hulk wrote:Which is crazy because I am as low risk as it gets (debt free, assets, 20% down, mortgage amount <2x annual income).
You are actually a higher risk than you think because in the eyes of the lender you have no demonstrated ability to pay debt. Lack of debt accumulation is not the same as being a responsible/low-risk borrower.
+1! Here is an analogy that might help.

Let's say I have never had any alcohol to drink ever (true). Let's say you are used to drinking the maximum you can while staying within the limit (say two glasses of wine) - daily at a neighborhood bar and driving home without any issues. Let's also say that the bartender is very conscientious about making sure that patrons don't fall foul with the law when they leave the bar.

Now, I come visiting and you take me to the bar (we are both in separate cars). Assuming we are the same build etc (in other words, we should be able to withstand the same amount of alcohol), would the bartender - being the conscientious dude he is - really give me the same amount to drink as he would give you (i.e., the two glasses of wine), or would he dither because I don't have a proven record of drinking (any amount) and driving?
an_asker
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Re: Best credit card deal

Post by an_asker »

Among my current array of credit cards are the following:

- Chase IHG - $49/year annual fee - for one annual free night at an IHG hotel (most common such hotel in the USA is the Holiday Inn)
- Chase Hyatt - $75/year annual fee - for one annual free night at a Hyatt hotel
- MBNA/Fidelity/BOA (I don't know what the latest incarnation is) - no annual fee, 2% cash back on all purchases
- Capital One - no annual fee, no foreign transaction fee, 1.5% cash back on all purchases

Plus about 20 others that I have just been lazy about closing. And my credit score - for whatever it is worth to the reader (it is not worth much to me, as I don't plan on any big purchases in the near future) - is over 800.

Here is a list of some credit cards that you might choose to pursue.
Katietsu
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Re: Best credit card deal

Post by Katietsu »

One big difference between the OP and many of the responses....OP's priority is to reach a high credit score quickly.

To OP: You should go to the FICO site and/or credit karma and research FICO score factors. I believe you will want to obtain 2 or 3 cards and will want to keep them until you get your mortgage. You will not want to use the credit card churning approach of getting a card with an annual fee waiver for first year but then cancelling to avoid the fee. If you have been out of debt for a long time, you may have trouble getting the cards with the best rewards/bonuses. In that case, you may need to start with a store card. These usually come with either a continual discount, eg 5 % off all purchases with Target or Krogers, or they come with a bigger percent, 10 or 20, off your first purchase.
Topic Author
Hulk
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Re: Best credit card deal

Post by Hulk »

inbox788 wrote:
Hulk wrote:
alaskantraveler wrote:If you are not a churner, and not interested in learning the ins and outs of frequent flyer programs a 2% cashback card is your best choice. Consider Citi Double Cash.
this or fidelity is probably what Ill do. Thanks!
Why don't you have credit cards? What do you intend to do with the one you get besides using it to get a mortgage? Do you plan to use it? Most benefits come with charging to the card, so if you're not going to use it, it's a moot point. Do you intend to keep the line open? If so, get one with no annual fees. If you don't plan to keep it, get one that has a fee, but free the first year and lots of sign up bonus. Take the bonus and run, and cancel before the annual fees for the next year are here. However, with your lack of credit, you might not qualify.
Drank the Koolaid (Dave Ramsey) and honesty dont really need one (except now that I need a mortgage). But Ill use the credit card going forward like I currently use my debit card
BW1985
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Re: Best credit card deal

Post by BW1985 »

Hulk wrote:
inbox788 wrote:
Hulk wrote:
alaskantraveler wrote:If you are not a churner, and not interested in learning the ins and outs of frequent flyer programs a 2% cashback card is your best choice. Consider Citi Double Cash.
this or fidelity is probably what Ill do. Thanks!
Why don't you have credit cards? What do you intend to do with the one you get besides using it to get a mortgage? Do you plan to use it? Most benefits come with charging to the card, so if you're not going to use it, it's a moot point. Do you intend to keep the line open? If so, get one with no annual fees. If you don't plan to keep it, get one that has a fee, but free the first year and lots of sign up bonus. Take the bonus and run, and cancel before the annual fees for the next year are here. However, with your lack of credit, you might not qualify.
Drank the Koolaid (Dave Ramsey) and honesty dont really need one (except now that I need a mortgage). But Ill use the credit card going forward like I currently use my debit card
Did you try manual underwriting? Is your credit score 0?
Chase the good life my whole life long, look back on my life and my life gone...where did I go wrong?
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Hulk
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Re: Best credit card deal

Post by Hulk »

BW1985 wrote:
Hulk wrote:
inbox788 wrote:
Hulk wrote:
alaskantraveler wrote:If you are not a churner, and not interested in learning the ins and outs of frequent flyer programs a 2% cashback card is your best choice. Consider Citi Double Cash.
this or fidelity is probably what Ill do. Thanks!
Why don't you have credit cards? What do you intend to do with the one you get besides using it to get a mortgage? Do you plan to use it? Most benefits come with charging to the card, so if you're not going to use it, it's a moot point. Do you intend to keep the line open? If so, get one with no annual fees. If you don't plan to keep it, get one that has a fee, but free the first year and lots of sign up bonus. Take the bonus and run, and cancel before the annual fees for the next year are here. However, with your lack of credit, you might not qualify.
Drank the Koolaid (Dave Ramsey) and honesty dont really need one (except now that I need a mortgage). But Ill use the credit card going forward like I currently use my debit card
Did you try manual underwriting? Is your credit score 0?

Yup. I couldn't find anyone who would do a manual underwriting (which was my plan) for a jumbo loan (>$417k). Even the oft touted Churchhill. And yes I did have a credit score even though I haven't had an open line of credit for 2 or 3 years. Well, 2 out of 3. One was 755, one was 748 and one didn't have a score for me. Which is part of the reason I was frustrated (I am in the lowest risk category on credit score, i.e >740) but had to have an open line of credit. dumb
BW1985
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Re: Best credit card deal

Post by BW1985 »

Hulk wrote: Yup. I couldn't find anyone who would do a manual underwriting (which was my plan) for a jumbo loan (>$417k). Even the oft touted Churchhill. And yes I did have a credit score even though I haven't had an open line of credit for 2 or 3 years. Well, 2 out of 3. One was 755, one was 748 and one didn't have a score for me. Which is part of the reason I was frustrated (I am in the lowest risk category on credit score, i.e >740) but had to have an open line of credit. dumb
Apologies I skipped down and didn't even read your original post.

Never heard of having to have an open credit card to qualify for a mortgage. Your credit score is good already.
Chase the good life my whole life long, look back on my life and my life gone...where did I go wrong?
takeshi
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Re: Best credit card deal

Post by takeshi »

Best is subjective regardless of topic. You can't just rely on polling others to determine what is a best fit for you. You really need to decide which strategy you're going with and if you're looking at getting a mortgage in the next few years you don't want to take the churning route -- at least, not until your mortgage is finalized. I'd suggest just going with a cash back card.

If you're going to look at rewards programs like Membership Rewards, Ultimate Rewards, etc most of those programs require a large amount of spend through the program in order to benefit but you'd also need to carefully look at which program has redemption options you can use to get the best value per point as redemption method can have a large impact on value. If you don't want to bother with that and/or don't intend to funnel a large amount of spend through your cards then you probably don't want to go that route.
Hulk wrote:I do like to fly southwest (bc you can change itinerary at no cost)
Would you prioritize earning rewards or flight benefits? if the former, then look at Ultimate Rewards cards as Southwest is a transfer partner. If the latter then look at the cobranded Chase Southwest card.
Hulk wrote:Which is part of the reason I was frustrated (I am in the lowest risk category on credit score, i.e >740) but had to have an open line of credit. dumb
It seems dumb because of your assumptions. As stated above, not having recently active credit accounts makes you a bigger risk regardless of score, assets, and everything else that you're relying on. It's not how you assess risk that matters as you're not the creditor. It's how the creditor assesses risk. Not saying it's correct or flawless. It is what it is and we all have to deal with it. Learn and make the most of it.
BW1985 wrote:Your credit score is good already.
It's never just about score for any credit product.
BW1985
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Re: Best credit card deal

Post by BW1985 »

KelKapel wrote:I am actively churning cards and about to get the Southwest Companion pass. Here are your two best options (in my opinion):

1. Southwest Companion pass. Open 2 Southwest cards when they are offering 50,000 sign on bonus (they are offering them RIGHT now, so I did Premiere and Plus), spend the 2k each within 90 days, and then you can use the Companion Pass for the remainder of the year it was earned in and the entire next year. You can change your companion 3 times during that time, so choose wisely. This will put you at 104,000 points. You will have to either take a flight to earn the last 6k or spend that on the card. There is also a backdoor option of transferring points to a hotel chain and then to Southwest but I don't suggest this since you lose points overall. Here are a few links to read up on it if this is what you choose.
http://www.thesimpledollar.com/southwes ... nion-pass/
http://www.extrapackofpeanuts.com/south ... nion-pass/

2. Chase Sapphire and Chase Freedom. The Chase Sapphire is consistently rated the best card and the Freedom does a specialty 5% cash back every quarter. This quarter its grocery stores and last quarter was gas stations. I believe the next quarter (starting in July) is restaurants. These two cards work great together since they are both Chase and you can combine the points with no problems, simple click of a button. If you get these, I highly suggest adding an additional cardholder and using the card at least once. If you don't you would be missing out on about easy points.
I've never used Southwest reward points, I assume they're more valuable to redeem for flights then for gift cards is that correct?
Chase the good life my whole life long, look back on my life and my life gone...where did I go wrong?
j0nnyg1984
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Re: Best credit card deal

Post by j0nnyg1984 »

BW1985 wrote:
KelKapel wrote:I am actively churning cards and about to get the Southwest Companion pass. Here are your two best options (in my opinion):

1. Southwest Companion pass. Open 2 Southwest cards when they are offering 50,000 sign on bonus (they are offering them RIGHT now, so I did Premiere and Plus), spend the 2k each within 90 days, and then you can use the Companion Pass for the remainder of the year it was earned in and the entire next year. You can change your companion 3 times during that time, so choose wisely. This will put you at 104,000 points. You will have to either take a flight to earn the last 6k or spend that on the card. There is also a backdoor option of transferring points to a hotel chain and then to Southwest but I don't suggest this since you lose points overall. Here are a few links to read up on it if this is what you choose.
http://www.thesimpledollar.com/southwes ... nion-pass/
http://www.extrapackofpeanuts.com/south ... nion-pass/

2. Chase Sapphire and Chase Freedom. The Chase Sapphire is consistently rated the best card and the Freedom does a specialty 5% cash back every quarter. This quarter its grocery stores and last quarter was gas stations. I believe the next quarter (starting in July) is restaurants. These two cards work great together since they are both Chase and you can combine the points with no problems, simple click of a button. If you get these, I highly suggest adding an additional cardholder and using the card at least once. If you don't you would be missing out on about easy points.
I've never used Southwest reward points, I assume they're more valuable to redeem for flights then for gift cards is that correct?
Yes, you can find some incredible flight deals with SW points. My mom and dad have each signed up for the chase SW and CSP cards and have enough SW points to fly free for the next few years.
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Re: Best credit card deal

Post by j0nnyg1984 »

With the exception of a few Amex cards, I have NOTHING left to churn - I've done them all too recently to try again. So, in January, I moved my tIRA to Merrill Edge, qualified for the highest (Platinum Honors) tier of Bank of America relationship status, and starting putting 100% of my spending on the BoA Travel Rewards card, earning 2.625% after the relationship bonus. It's fantastic. My ME account got a bonus for the transfer and it's holding only Vanguard ETF's, no fees.

I've earned almost $1000 in statement credits / cash back since I started with BoA a couple of months ago.
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Hulk
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Re: Best credit card deal

Post by Hulk »

BW1985 wrote:
Hulk wrote: Yup. I couldn't find anyone who would do a manual underwriting (which was my plan) for a jumbo loan (>$417k). Even the oft touted Churchhill. And yes I did have a credit score even though I haven't had an open line of credit for 2 or 3 years. Well, 2 out of 3. One was 755, one was 748 and one didn't have a score for me. Which is part of the reason I was frustrated (I am in the lowest risk category on credit score, i.e >740) but had to have an open line of credit. dumb
Apologies I skipped down and didn't even read your original post.

Never heard of having to have an open credit card to qualify for a mortgage. Your credit score is good already.
Not necessarily a credit card, just an open line of credit. The guy at Bank of America said getting a car loan would work too
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Hulk
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Re: Best credit card deal

Post by Hulk »

Hulk wrote:Which is part of the reason I was frustrated (I am in the lowest risk category on credit score, i.e >740) but had to have an open line of credit. dumb
It seems dumb because of your assumptions. As stated above, not having recently active credit accounts makes you a bigger risk regardless of score, assets, and everything else that you're relying on. It's not how you assess risk that matters as you're not the creditor. It's how the creditor assesses risk. Not saying it's correct or flawless. It is what it is and we all have to deal with it. Learn and make the most of it.



Your right, if I suddenly open a credit card then I am instantly low risk. Thats all they required (for me to have the most favorable interest rate too I might add.) Makes perfect sense. :oops: :oops: :oops: NOT!!
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Re: Best credit card deal

Post by midareff »

Without reading the entire thread to see if this is a duplicate but.. seems to me the American Express Blue Cash Preferred which gives you 6% cash back on the first $6000 of grocery purchases at stand alone grocery stores would be the winner. It's $75 a year as a fee but that's still an easy annual $285 cash back after the fee. I believe it's waived the first year as well.

OTOH, the Fidelity 2% Cash Back on everything Visa without limits is a winner. I use quite a few cash rewards cards and they are all set on auto pay in full. Over $2100 in cash rewards last year, easy peasy. Get your money for nothing and your chicks for free, it's all rock and roll.
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Re: Best credit card deal

Post by an_asker »

Hulk wrote:[...]It seems dumb because of your assumptions. As stated above, not having recently active credit accounts makes you a bigger risk regardless of score, assets, and everything else that you're relying on. It's not how you assess risk that matters as you're not the creditor. It's how the creditor assesses risk. Not saying it's correct or flawless. It is what it is and we all have to deal with it. Learn and make the most of it.
Your right, if I suddenly open a credit card then I am instantly low risk. Thats all they required (for me to have the most favorable interest rate too I might add.) Makes perfect sense. :oops: :oops: :oops: NOT!!
It is not that simple. The banks that hand out the credit cards are not that dumb (not that they're too smart either), else they would've all gone under ages ago. Did you read my drinking analogy?

If you refuse to understand how the credit thing works, no one can make you understand. Of course, you could set your plan in action and see how much of a difference it makes, i.e., open a credit line today and see how much of a difference it makes in your ability to get a loan next month.

PS: Did you try calling in Dave Ramsey and asking him what he would suggest? Heck, he might even know a lender or two who would be able to make you that loan. You could even call a local ELP for advice!
Last edited by an_asker on Mon May 23, 2016 8:14 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Best credit card deal

Post by an_asker »

midareff wrote:Without reading the entire thread to see if this is a duplicate but.. seems to me the American Express Blue Cash Preferred which gives you 6% cash back on the first $6000 of grocery purchases at stand alone grocery stores would be the winner. It's $75 a year as a fee but that's still an easy annual $285 cash back after the fee. I believe it's waived the first year as well.

OTOH, the Fidelity 2% Cash Back on everything Visa without limits is a winner. I use quite a few cash rewards cards and they are all set on auto pay in full. Over $2100 in cash rewards last year, easy peasy. Get your money for nothing and your chicks for free, it's all rock and roll.
It does not appear that OP is too interested in getting a credit card - more like complaining why his 'no credit' philosophy does not work as he assumed it would/should.
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Re: Best credit card deal

Post by midareff »

an_asker wrote:
midareff wrote:Without reading the entire thread to see if this is a duplicate but.. seems to me the American Express Blue Cash Preferred which gives you 6% cash back on the first $6000 of grocery purchases at stand alone grocery stores would be the winner. It's $75 a year as a fee but that's still an easy annual $285 cash back after the fee. I believe it's waived the first year as well.

OTOH, the Fidelity 2% Cash Back on everything Visa without limits is a winner. I use quite a few cash rewards cards and they are all set on auto pay in full. Over $2100 in cash rewards last year, easy peasy. Get your money for nothing and your chicks for free, it's all rock and roll.
It does not appear that OP is too interested in getting a credit card - more like complaining why his 'no credit' philosophy does not work as he assumed it would/should.
LOL, you (editorially) want a mortgage, which is credit, but want them to give it to you without a credit history to show your worthiness and/or track record of paying back things on time. Duh.......... :oops:
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Re: Best credit card deal

Post by protagonist »

It does not appear that OP is too interested in getting a credit card - more like complaining why his 'no credit' philosophy does not work as he assumed it would/should.
Credit cards are not, in fact, the best idea for everyone. The first reference that popped up when I googled "average credit card debt USA" states that the average indebted American household carries over $15K credit card debt, and 38.1% of US households acknowledge having credit card debt. Interest rates are frankly usurious. And those who miss payments wind up with bad credit, which is much worse than no credit. Based on those simple facts I would go further to suggest that credit cards are a very bad idea for a large percentage (perhaps the majority) of the population. Anybody who cannot and does not confidently pay off their cards in full every month SHOULD be very leery of getting a credit card.
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Hulk
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Re: Best credit card deal

Post by Hulk »

midareff wrote:
an_asker wrote:
midareff wrote:Without reading the entire thread to see if this is a duplicate but.. seems to me the American Express Blue Cash Preferred which gives you 6% cash back on the first $6000 of grocery purchases at stand alone grocery stores would be the winner. It's $75 a year as a fee but that's still an easy annual $285 cash back after the fee. I believe it's waived the first year as well.

OTOH, the Fidelity 2% Cash Back on everything Visa without limits is a winner. I use quite a few cash rewards cards and they are all set on auto pay in full. Over $2100 in cash rewards last year, easy peasy. Get your money for nothing and your chicks for free, it's all rock and roll.
It does not appear that OP is too interested in getting a credit card - more like complaining why his 'no credit' philosophy does not work as he assumed it would/should.
LOL, you (editorially) want a mortgage, which is credit, but want them to give it to you without a credit history to show your worthiness and/or track record of paying back things on time. Duh.......... :oops:
I do have a credit history. 748 and 755 which has been mentioned. I have shown an ability to pay off debt. But as I currently have no debt, I have no open lines of credit. And it is not about "worthiness." at all, its about risk. I am low risk, I just may not fit into the cookie cutter mold they are looking for to give mortgages without having to think. It is possible to determine risk (not worthiness) without a FICO, which banks did before (the relatively short hx of) credit cards.
Last edited by Hulk on Mon May 23, 2016 9:55 am, edited 4 times in total.
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midareff
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Re: Best credit card deal

Post by midareff »

Hulk wrote:
midareff wrote:
an_asker wrote:
midareff wrote:Without reading the entire thread to see if this is a duplicate but.. seems to me the American Express Blue Cash Preferred which gives you 6% cash back on the first $6000 of grocery purchases at stand alone grocery stores would be the winner. It's $75 a year as a fee but that's still an easy annual $285 cash back after the fee. I believe it's waived the first year as well.

OTOH, the Fidelity 2% Cash Back on everything Visa without limits is a winner. I use quite a few cash rewards cards and they are all set on auto pay in full. Over $2100 in cash rewards last year, easy peasy. Get your money for nothing and your chicks for free, it's all rock and roll.
It does not appear that OP is too interested in getting a credit card - more like complaining why his 'no credit' philosophy does not work as he assumed it would/should.
LOL, you (editorially) want a mortgage, which is credit, but want them to give it to you without a credit history to show your worthiness and/or track record of paying back things on time. Duh.......... :oops:
How many times do I need to say this. I DO HAVE A CREDIT HISTORY. 748 and 755. Hello. I have shown an ability to pay off debt. But as I currently have no debt, I have no open lines of credit. I get if you don't to read the whole thread but geez

Ahhh Hulk... You asked about the "Best credit card deal" ... I gave you two great ones. Add the Citi 1% + 1% cash back Mastercard for another.
That's three for you, so geeez! back.
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