Downgrading a CC [Credit Card]

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Noobinvestor15
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Downgrading a CC [Credit Card]

Post by Noobinvestor15 » Wed Mar 16, 2016 7:18 pm

Hi all,

I have a question regarding "downgrading" an AmEx card I currently have. I currently have a blue cash preferred card which gets me 6% cash back on groceries and has an annual fee of $75. For reasons I won't bore you with I may be spending less on groceries in the near future where I would no longer be spending enough on groceries to warrant paying for the preferred card when AmEx offers the regular blue cash card with only 3% back on groceries but there's no annual fee. Can I just call them up and ask to switch the cards out and will this cause another hard pull to be done on my credit or the ding to my credit score of closing a card? This is really what I was trying to avoid? Thanks

Jags4186
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Re: Downgrading a CC

Post by Jags4186 » Wed Mar 16, 2016 7:26 pm

Noobinvestor15 wrote:Hi all,

I have a question regarding "downgrading" an AmEx card I currently have. I currently have a blue cash preferred card which gets me 6% cash back on groceries and has an annual fee of $75. For reasons I won't bore you with I may be spending less on groceries in the near future where I would no longer be spending enough on groceries to warrant paying for the preferred card when AmEx offers the regular blue cash card with only 3% back on groceries but there's no annual fee. Can I just call them up and ask to switch the cards out and will this cause another hard pull to be done on my credit or the ding to my credit score of closing a card? This is really what I was trying to avoid? Thanks
You don't even need to call. Just log in to your account online and do a chat with a CSR.

Also, have you considered buying gift cards at grocery stores for 6% cash back for places you normally would shop anyway?

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arcticpineapplecorp.
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Re: Downgrading a CC

Post by arcticpineapplecorp. » Wed Mar 16, 2016 8:10 pm

I haven't ever had an annual fee on a credit card since my first one...and I think that was $10 and I got it waived the second year and never accepted a card with an annual fee since.

Can't imagine ever paying for an AmEx Black card ($10,000 annual fee). :oops:

"You have to be invited to sign up for American Express's most exclusive offering, Centurion, informally known as its Black card, and it will cost you $10,000. But it comes with envious looks and a dedicated agent."

http://www.marketplace.org/2016/03/10/world/black-cards
"May you live as long as you want and never want as long as you live" -- Irish Blessing | "Invest we must" -- Jack Bogle

Topic Author
Noobinvestor15
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Re: Downgrading a CC

Post by Noobinvestor15 » Wed Mar 16, 2016 9:16 pm

Jags4186 wrote:
Noobinvestor15 wrote:Hi all,

I have a question regarding "downgrading" an AmEx card I currently have. I currently have a blue cash preferred card which gets me 6% cash back on groceries and has an annual fee of $75. For reasons I won't bore you with I may be spending less on groceries in the near future where I would no longer be spending enough on groceries to warrant paying for the preferred card when AmEx offers the regular blue cash card with only 3% back on groceries but there's no annual fee. Can I just call them up and ask to switch the cards out and will this cause another hard pull to be done on my credit or the ding to my credit score of closing a card? This is really what I was trying to avoid? Thanks
You don't even need to call. Just log in to your account online and do a chat with a CSR.

Also, have you considered buying gift cards at grocery stores for 6% cash back for places you normally would shop anyway?
Yes I have, there just isn't really any place I could use those gift cards. I cannot pay any of my regular expenses (rent etc) with a visa or Amex gift card, I've already checked. And I have an Amazon store card that gets me 5% back already so that wouldn't be worth it. I'll look again next time I go to the grocery store make sure there isn't something I could use.

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Noobinvestor15
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Re: Downgrading a CC

Post by Noobinvestor15 » Wed Mar 16, 2016 9:17 pm

arcticpineapplecorp. wrote:I haven't ever had an annual fee on a credit card since my first one...and I think that was $10 and I got it waived the second year and never accepted a card with an annual fee since.

Can't imagine ever paying for an AmEx Black card ($10,000 annual fee). :oops:

"You have to be invited to sign up for American Express's most exclusive offering, Centurion, informally known as its Black card, and it will cost you $10,000. But it comes with envious looks and a dedicated agent."

http://www.marketplace.org/2016/03/10/world/black-cards

I mean I did the calculations on what I spend and this was the best cash back card for my situation even with the fee. Did you have some other option in mind?

bstevlin
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Re: Downgrading a CC [Credit Card]

Post by bstevlin » Wed Mar 16, 2016 9:28 pm

I did exactly what you intend to do by phone. It was not a problem. Our new grocery store does not take credit cards, however the savings more than makes up for the 6% rebate. The savings are from 15% to 30% or even more. We now have the AMEX everyday blue card which is the card we started with.

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Noobinvestor15
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Re: Downgrading a CC [Credit Card]

Post by Noobinvestor15 » Wed Mar 16, 2016 9:44 pm

bstevlin wrote:I did exactly what you intend to do by phone. It was not a problem. Our new grocery store does not take credit cards, however the savings more than makes up for the 6% rebate. The savings are from 15% to 30% or even more. We now have the AMEX everyday blue card which is the card we started with.
Sorry, where does the 15-30% come into play here? I'm a bit confused.

bstevlin
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Re: Downgrading a CC [Credit Card]

Post by bstevlin » Wed Mar 16, 2016 10:05 pm

The new grocery store prices are 15% to 30% less than the grocery store that accepted the AMEX card which gave us 6% back. So instead of spending $1.00 and getting back .06 cents from AMEX I now spend .70 to .85 cents to get the same merchandise with a much larger selection as a bonus. Does this help?

protagonist
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Re: Downgrading a CC [Credit Card]

Post by protagonist » Thu Mar 17, 2016 12:29 am

If you already have good credit, a "hard pull" will probably affect your score insignificantly. I wouldn't let that influence your decision much.

Topic Author
Noobinvestor15
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Re: Downgrading a CC [Credit Card]

Post by Noobinvestor15 » Thu Mar 17, 2016 6:17 am

bstevlin wrote:The new grocery store prices are 15% to 30% less than the grocery store that accepted the AMEX card which gave us 6% back. So instead of spending $1.00 and getting back .06 cents from AMEX I now spend .70 to .85 cents to get the same merchandise with a much larger selection as a bonus. Does this help?
Ah okay, I see, thanks!

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Noobinvestor15
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Re: Downgrading a CC [Credit Card]

Post by Noobinvestor15 » Thu Mar 17, 2016 6:18 am

protagonist wrote:If you already have good credit, a "hard pull" will probably affect your score insignificantly. I wouldn't let that influence your decision much.
That is true, and I'm not planning on taking out a loan in the near future. Do you think they would do another hard pull before making the switch though?

jpelder
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Re: Downgrading a CC [Credit Card]

Post by jpelder » Thu Mar 17, 2016 7:21 am

Noobinvestor15 wrote:
protagonist wrote:If you already have good credit, a "hard pull" will probably affect your score insignificantly. I wouldn't let that influence your decision much.
That is true, and I'm not planning on taking out a loan in the near future. Do you think they would do another hard pull before making the switch though?
They shouldn't. Just ask for a "product change". This is what I did with Citi to switch from the Dividend to the DoubleCash card. Since they cancel the old one, they treat it as the same account

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prudent
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Re: Downgrading a CC [Credit Card]

Post by prudent » Thu Mar 17, 2016 7:54 am

From what I have read, Amex will do a soft pull on a product change. No harm done.

Da5id
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Re: Downgrading a CC

Post by Da5id » Thu Mar 17, 2016 9:05 am

arcticpineapplecorp. wrote:I haven't ever had an annual fee on a credit card since my first one...and I think that was $10 and I got it waived the second year and never accepted a card with an annual fee since.
Paying a CC fee is not a vice, and not paying one is not a virtue IMHO. It comes down to your net return after paying the fee. I pay Amex $75 for the 6% back on groceries because with very hungry teenage boys I easily hit the $6000 limit. That gets me $360 back. Subtract the $75 fee, and I'm netting 4.75% back on my groceries, is there a better deal on a free card? If not, the fee is a good deal. If there is, the fee is a bad deal. Once my kids go off to college, I expect it will become a "bad deal", and will probably be looking into doing what the OP wants to do.

To OP yes, just call them...

Carl53
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Re: Downgrading a CC [Credit Card]

Post by Carl53 » Thu Mar 17, 2016 9:07 am

Be sure to ask if you can retain any up redeemed cash rebates.

Topic Author
Noobinvestor15
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Re: Downgrading a CC [Credit Card]

Post by Noobinvestor15 » Thu Mar 17, 2016 9:22 am

Awesome, thanks for the feedback guys. And I'll definitely ask about ensuring I keep the rewards I've accrued up until that point, good callout there.

takeshi
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Re: Downgrading a CC

Post by takeshi » Thu Mar 17, 2016 9:34 am

AmEx does actual product changes between certain products. BCP -> BCE and vice-versa have been done by many and no hard pull is needed. Your rewards should be find since they have the same rewards program but it wouldn't hurt to verify with them.
arcticpineapplecorp. wrote:I haven't ever had an annual fee on a credit card since my first one...and I think that was $10 and I got it waived the second year and never accepted a card with an annual fee since.
You have to do what works for you but I recommend looking at total cost/benefit and not just AF itself. My biggest rewards come from cards with AF's. YMMV depending on your spend categories and volumes.
Noobinvestor15 wrote:AmEx offers the regular blue cash card with only 3% back on groceries but there's no annual fee.
Picking nits but that's the Blue Cash Everyday. The Blue Cash is a different card, offering 5% on certain categories after $6,500 in spend. It can be tricky to find on the AmEx site. Here's a link but you may need to use incognito mode and/or clear cache to access the page:
https://www.americanexpress.com/us/cred ... cash/25330

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