Changing FICO Score

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birdy
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Changing FICO Score

Post by birdy »

My spouse and I have been retired for almost 1 year now. We are taking a trip to Italy in March and decided to get a credit card with no overseas transaction fees. I applied for a AAA Visa card. I was shocked when I got a letter from them saying they would only approve me for a $4000.00 credit limit. Before retiring, my FICO score was 835, now it shows 793. We have no debts and pay of credit card balances every month. I assume my score changed because I am no longer employed and not opening/using credit much any more. I just feel highly insulted that even though I have over 2M in investments, I am not considered a good credit risk any more! Any other retirees having this happen to them?

birdy
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David Jay
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Re: Changing FICO Score

Post by David Jay »

Anything over 750 is a perfectly good credit score. Mine usually moves around between 780 and 810. As I borrow less, I find that my score comes down.

I doubt that credit score affected the credit limit. I suspect it was the internal policies of the issuer, including the length of time doing business (new customer) and W2 income (none).

[edit] FICO score is often mIs-understood. It does not say if you are a good credit risk, it really is a gauge of how good a "debt" customer you are. No debt, few revolving credit accounts, no mortgage = lower FICO score. So yes, your credit score goes down as you stop patronizing lenders. But if you are not patronizing lenders you don't need a great FICO score.
Last edited by David Jay on Sat Jan 21, 2017 12:49 pm, edited 3 times in total.
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dm200
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Re: Changing FICO Score

Post by dm200 »

David Jay wrote:Anything over 750 is a perfectly good credit score. Mine usually moves around between 780 and 810. As I borrow less, I find that my score comes down.
I doubt that credit score affected the credit limit. I suspect it was the internal policies of the issuer, including the length of time doing business (new customer) and W2 income (none).
I agree. Credit score is not everything. In addition to the possible reasons cited, it could be the total credit limits you have.
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FrugalInvestor
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Re: Changing FICO Score

Post by FrugalInvestor »

I don't believe that your employment status has anything to do with your credit score. It didn't impact ours at all when I retired. I also doubt that your investable assets have any impact on it either.

What seems to matter for us is the number of cards (too few can have a negative impact) and the percentage of total credit limit that is regularly utilized (too high can be a negative and probably too low). We actually hang onto a few department store credit cards and use them occasionally just to keep our activity and credit score higher. The lack of a mortgage or car loan doesn't seem to matter much as long as you have a few cards of different types.

Age of your oldest credit card can also impact your score. We've hung onto our oldest card until the newer ones 'age' a little in order minimize the impact on our credit score when we cancel it.

We don't really need credit so our score isn't terribly important to us but I like to keep it in the 'excellent' zone just in case.
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Spirit Rider
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Re: Changing FICO Score

Post by Spirit Rider »

Simply being retired wouldn't have changed your credit score. It was more likely due to some credit lines aging out. Such as paid off installment loans and or a paid off mortgage.

However, a 793 credit score would be more than enough to get substantial credit limits. It was probably more due to the credit issuer's underwriting rules.

First, some issuer's are just stingy and grant very small credit lines. I don't know if this is true of the actual AAA card issuer. Then they use your yearly income to determine an appropriate credit limit. They normally do not take into account any assets under the basic underwriting used to determine the credit limit. Only your credit reports/scores and their own models that take into account recent credit usage/need patterns.

Unfortunately, this can disadvantage retirees. You could try contacting them to see about a credit line increase based on a more comprehensive financial review.
Dilbydog
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Re: Changing FICO Score

Post by Dilbydog »

Your "low" limit is not a function of your credit score, as your score is in the excellent range. Do you currently have cards with higher limits? I've had success in calling a new cc issuer and asking for an increase to my initial credit line by simply asking them to match the limits of other cards I currently hold. In addition, if this is your first AAA card the lower limit may be due to a lack of history with AAA. You could also look into cards (with no foreign transaction fees) offered by banks where you currently have a revolver.
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TheTimeLord
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Re: Changing FICO Score

Post by TheTimeLord »

birdy wrote:My spouse and I have been retired for almost 1 year now. We are taking a trip to Italy in March and decided to get a credit card with no overseas transaction fees. I applied for a AAA Visa card. I was shocked when I got a letter from them saying they would only approve me for a $4000.00 credit limit. Before retiring, my FICO score was 835, now it shows 793. We have no debts and pay of credit card balances every month. I assume my score changed because I am no longer employed and not opening/using credit much any more. I just feel highly insulted that even though I have over 2M in investments, I am not considered a good credit risk any more! Any other retirees having this happen to them?

birdy
Get a debit card with no foreign transaction fees if this insults you. You asked them for credit they gave it to you, if you don't like the amount call their customer service and ask for an increase. But remember you are trying to use this company to save you money not establish an actual relationship so go easy on them.
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*3!4!/5!
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Re: Changing FICO Score

Post by *3!4!/5! »

Which bank issued this card?
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Nate79
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Re: Changing FICO Score

Post by Nate79 »

When you called the card services what was the reason that they gave you for the low limit? Did you request a higher limit?
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susa
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Re: Changing FICO Score

Post by susa »

To the OP --- a simple solution is to pre-pay the week before departure, say $3000 into your Visa account. You now have total spending power of $7000. If that is not enough, adjust as needed.

Worked fine on an Asia trip for us recently.
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Re: Changing FICO Score

Post by grabiner »

While your credit score is not affected by your employment status, the issuer may consider your employment status in the credit decision. Since you have retired, your income is probably much lower than it was when you were working; this could be the reason you were offered a low credit limit. Your huge portfolio probably wasn't even reported on the credit-card application, only the dividends it pays, as those dividends are counted as income.
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invst65
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Re: Changing FICO Score

Post by invst65 »

birdy wrote:My spouse and I have been retired for almost 1 year now. We are taking a trip to Italy in March and decided to get a credit card with no overseas transaction fees.
What is an "overseas transaction fee"? I have never encountered this on any of my travels, mostly to Asia.

I use a lot of cash when I travel so I use my Fidelity Bank debit card at ATM's. Never had a problem getting money and the ATM fees are always refunded to my account anywhere in the world. Also insures you get a fair exchange rate on the U.S. dollar.
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Phineas J. Whoopee
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Re: Changing FICO Score

Post by Phineas J. Whoopee »

birdy wrote:... I just feel highly insulted that even though I have over 2M in investments, I am not considered a good credit risk any more! Any other retirees having this happen to them?
...
Feeling insulted is a real feeling. I'm not going to advise you to "find a different way to feel."

At 793 your credit score is extraordinarily high.

The scores are a way of fitting some analyzed characteristics of borrowers to statistical likelihood of paying back amounts borrowed. They do not take income or assets into account. Creditors and others use different models for different purposes.

Credit scores do not make lending decisions. Lenders do. A score is one convenient way for them to process information. They may, and probably do, take income into account, and maybe assets if they ask you about them. My mortgage lender asked me.

People feel insulted about credit scores the way they change their investments as a political statement. If you feel, you feel, but it's best not to take action based on it.

PJW
Last edited by Phineas J. Whoopee on Sat Jan 21, 2017 11:18 pm, edited 1 time in total.
enki
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Re: Changing FICO Score

Post by enki »

As others have said, your credit "score" is just a calculation on various factors to give a rough idea of your credit risk. Lenders will pull your entire report and use your history as a whole in deciding whether or not to issue you credit and, if so, how much. They each have different underwriting requirements and internal scoring which affects those decisions. Bank #1 might give you a $30K limit, Bank #2 might only give you $4k and Bank #3 might decline you.

You being retired is unlikely to matter much assuming it didn't have a huge impact into your income. On applications, income is self reported and doesn't care about where it comes from (W2, 1099, investments, SS, etc.). Outside of special audits, generally on much higher credit lines, they usually don't check.

If, as you mentioned, you have very little debt, does that mean you have very little credit history? If you've paid in cash most of your life and have no recent mortgage, car loan (or other similar loans) and only a couple of low-limit credit cards, your score might be very high, but most banks might be hesitant to issue you a lot of credit. Having a five cards with 10+ years of history is very good. Having 10 cards of 5+ years history could be better. Again, depends on the bank.

However, based on everything you told us, my money is simply on the lender in question being stingy with credit lines. It looks like AAA is underwritten by US Bank. I'm not very familiar with their underwriting policies, but it is a co-branded card (AAA) and those, just like store cards, usually don't like to give out very large credit lines. If you're looking for the highest credit lines, your best bet (in my experience) is to go directly with larger banks -- Chase, Citibank, American Express, Discover, etc. All of them are much more lenient with limits, and they also routinely have 0% promotions.

With that said, personally we never carry a balance so 0% promos are useless for me. I care about points and other benefits. If you were going to go on a big trip, you would probably have had a better result with something like the Chase Sapphire Reserve that just came out. Minimum 10k CL, and (up until last week) you could get $1500 in free travel rewards after spending $4k in the first 3-months. $300 travel credit, which could have been doubled up your first year ($600) would negate the annual fee ($450). Triple points on travel expenses with 1.5c redemption value. Oh, and free Priority Pass club membership and TSA/Global Entry reimbursement. It doesn't have a 0% APR promotion, but you probably could have made considerably more then what the interest costs would have been. A little off topic, but the point is don't just look at APR savings, especially if you can (and should) pay in full.
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Re: Changing FICO Score

Post by *3!4!/5! »

*3!4!/5! wrote:Which bank issued this card?
enki wrote:It looks like AAA is underwritten by US Bank.
Not necessarily. It used to be exclusively BofA, but now it is split between BofA and USBank. That's why I asked which one was OP's. USBank is very conservative.
Geologist
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Re: Changing FICO Score

Post by Geologist »

enki wrote: However, based on everything you told us, my money is simply on the lender in question being stingy with credit lines. It looks like AAA is underwritten by US Bank. I'm not very familiar with their underwriting policies, but it is a co-branded card (AAA) and those, just like store cards, usually don't like to give out very large credit lines. If you're looking for the highest credit lines, your best bet (in my experience) is to go directly with larger banks -- Chase, Citibank, American Express, Discover, etc. All of them are much more lenient with limits, and they also routinely have 0% promotions.
I'm not sure how you decided that AAA cards come from US Bank. My mother and I each have one (from AAA clubs in different states) and they were issued by Bank of America. This doesn't preclude AAA clubs in other states from using US Bank, I suppose, but the OP didn't mention US Bank.

My credit limit is several thousand dollars higher than the OP mentions, but a) I have had the card for years and the limit was raised at points and b) the limit is high enough for my purposes.
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Re: Changing FICO Score

Post by dm200 »

susa wrote:To the OP --- a simple solution is to pre-pay the week before departure, say $3000 into your Visa account. You now have total spending power of $7000. If that is not enough, adjust as needed.
Worked fine on an Asia trip for us recently.
I would not count on this. A growing "trend" is using overpaying credit cards for fraud or money laundering. This might get you on a "watch list" for use of the card.
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Re: Changing FICO Score

Post by Mr.BB »

Scores do bounce a little and depending who's score you are looking at, there may be more of a spread.
I just paid off our house and we have no credit card debt. After paying off our house our scores dropped from the mid 850's to around 830's. Yet our Vantage score stayed about the same. One thing I like to do help the score is when I buy a new car I will get a loan for part of it (I save enough to buy it outright), and then spend 4-6months making payments, it always helps.
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Re: Changing FICO Score

Post by Spirit Rider »

invst65 wrote:
birdy wrote:My spouse and I have been retired for almost 1 year now. We are taking a trip to Italy in March and decided to get a credit card with no overseas transaction fees.
What is an "overseas transaction fee"? I have never encountered this on any of my travels, mostly to Asia.

I use a lot of cash when I travel so I use my Fidelity Bank debit card at ATM's. Never had a problem getting money and the ATM fees are always refunded to my account anywhere in the world. Also insures you get a fair exchange rate on the U.S. dollar
The correct term is "foreign transaction fee". This is a fee added to international credit card transactions. MasterCard and Visa charge a 1% fee and their associated issuers usually add an additional 2% fee for a total foreign transaction fee of 3%. American Express usually adds a 2.7% foreign transaction fee.

Some credit card issuers absorb the MasterCard and Visa 1% fee and do not add one of their own, this results in a 0% fee. Some issuers have one or more of their cards with no such fee.
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Re: Changing FICO Score

Post by beyou »

How much of a limit do you need ?

My wife just applied for a card elsewhere. She works only part time so despite a high fico, similar amount of credit was extended as the OP. After a few months of paying bills, went online and asked for more. Small increase was immediately granted, more could have been requested if we wanted, though then they would access that credit report (which is frozen).

Decided instead of unfreeze, just payoff balance whenever it hits close to the limit. In this day and age, easy to do from your phone anywhere. I get an email warning from the card issuer as we approach the limit, and if so, go on my checking acct app and pay it down.
Also carry a different card with larger limit from past, one that has lesser rewards but available as a plan B.
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Re: Changing FICO Score

Post by gkaplan »

My experience is that credit card companies start card holders at a fairly low limit and gradually raise the limit.
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Re: Changing FICO Score

Post by enki »

Geologist wrote:
enki wrote: However, based on everything you told us, my money is simply on the lender in question being stingy with credit lines. It looks like AAA is underwritten by US Bank. I'm not very familiar with their underwriting policies, but it is a co-branded card (AAA) and those, just like store cards, usually don't like to give out very large credit lines. If you're looking for the highest credit lines, your best bet (in my experience) is to go directly with larger banks -- Chase, Citibank, American Express, Discover, etc. All of them are much more lenient with limits, and they also routinely have 0% promotions.
I'm not sure how you decided that AAA cards come from US Bank. My mother and I each have one (from AAA clubs in different states) and they were issued by Bank of America. This doesn't preclude AAA clubs in other states from using US Bank, I suppose, but the OP didn't mention US Bank.

My credit limit is several thousand dollars higher than the OP mentions, but a) I have had the card for years and the limit was raised at points and b) the limit is high enough for my purposes.
I did a quick search on the AAA Visa and came to a page that said it was issued by US Bank. It made me choose a club first (South East), so maybe different regions have different issuers? I didn't know for sure, hence my statement beginning with "It looks like..." :happy

My earlier point still stands though. In my experience, co-branded credit cards will generally have lower CLs compared to ones issued directly by a bank. Not all the time, but most of the time. Here are a couple of relevant data points -- about a year ago, my wife applied for the no-AF Disney card issued by Chase. It came with some gift card promo, but she really wanted some of the perks for visiting Disney World, which we do often -- things like special character meet and greet. Anyway, she got approved for a $10k CL. Not bad, certainly. Also about a year ago, I applied for the IHG card, also issued by Chase, because of the platinum status benefit and free stay per year. I think I got a $9200 CL on that one. We never use the cards for anything and simply have them for the ancillary perks. We recently both applied for Sapphire Reserve cards and got $33k and $35k limits respectively. Granted some time had passed, but our credit hadn't changed outside of exceptionally minor differences. We are and were in top-tier status (800+), no derogatories, 1-2% utilization, good AAoA, multiple products, etc. All of our other credit cards, prior to and now, have 15-30k limits (including other Chase products as long time customers), so there was no real reasoning for the lower initial CL from the Disney or IHG branded cards outside of the common, for whatever reason, fact that they often are lower. You can find countless examples of people with top-tier credit applying for stuff like Best Buy, Macys, etc. and only getting a few thousand dollar CLs. Its more prominent in store-only cards, but still the case in Visa/MCs too. Which is why my assumption that this plays a big factor in the OPs case is the situation. I could be wrong though, since we don't really know anything about their complete credit history.
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Re: Changing FICO Score

Post by enki »

*3!4!/5! wrote:
*3!4!/5! wrote:Which bank issued this card?
enki wrote:It looks like AAA is underwritten by US Bank.
Not necessarily. It used to be exclusively BofA, but now it is split between BofA and USBank. That's why I asked which one was OP's. USBank is very conservative.
Thanks for the extra insight and information. For some reason I thought US Bank was one of the more conservative ones but wasn't 100% sure.
enki
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Re: Changing FICO Score

Post by enki »

blevine wrote:How much of a limit do you need ?

My wife just applied for a card elsewhere. She works only part time so despite a high fico, similar amount of credit was extended as the OP. After a few months of paying bills, went online and asked for more. Small increase was immediately granted, more could have been requested if we wanted, though then they would access that credit report (which is frozen).

Decided instead of unfreeze, just payoff balance whenever it hits close to the limit. In this day and age, easy to do from your phone anywhere. I get an email warning from the card issuer as we approach the limit, and if so, go on my checking acct app and pay it down.
Also carry a different card with larger limit from past, one that has lesser rewards but available as a plan B.
Many banks will only offer consumer requested CLIs with a hard pull. Some will try with a soft pull first (Discover, Amex, etc.) while others will offer random soft-pull offers on occasion (Citibank). But many require a hard pull for any CLI that they do not initiate. Since you can often make a lot of money out of sign-up bonuses on new cards, taking a hard pull for what is often a meager increase is often not worth it if you are trying to maximize your credit with the most bang for the buck.

Charging close to your balance and paying it off to charge more within a billing cycle is fine, and can often result in quicker auto-CLIs if the bank sees you needing more credit and being responsible. But if you continually have your statement reflecting a high utilization on your bill, even if it is paid in full every month, will seriously hurt your credit. Also, any other creditors may see this is a warning sign. So if you are trying to build your credit with low-limit cards, its best to pay it off before the statement date.

You mentioned she received a small initial CL because of her part-time job. Most banks allow applicants to report any income they have a reasonable access to. So, for example, if you make $100k and she only makes $10k part-time, she could say her annual income is $110k. That could certainly help in getting better initial CLs.
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Re: Changing FICO Score

Post by enki »

gkaplan wrote:My experience is that credit card companies start card holders at a fairly low limit and gradually raise the limit.
Totally depends on the bank, the applicant and their credit history.

The internal underwriting of a bank often likes to see direct history with clients. American Express is a good example of this, as they will generally give small initial CLs to people that don't previously have Amex cards. But they will also usually let you get a 3X increase after 90-days with just a soft pull -- so you could easily go from $5k to $15k in three months with good behavior. But if someone has a great credit history with existing high CLs from other banks, more often than not they will provide a similar CL on a new card too. Banks that focus on poor to moderate credit customers, like Capital One, will generally do the small initial CL with occasional raises as you mentioned. Again, it all depends.
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Re: Changing FICO Score

Post by MikeG62 »

Reduced FICO score likely due to lack of revolving credit (no mortgage or loans). I know that is the case with me. My score used to be 830-840, but in the last few years has declined to 800-810 (I paid off my mortgage several years ago and have no other outstanding loans - have not had any in years).

Have you tried to call the bank and ask them to increase the credit limit?

Usually this is effective once you have had the card for a while and built up history of charging things and paying the balance off on time. However, if they just wanted to start you off low, they may well agree to increase your credit limit if you simply ask.
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Re: Changing FICO Score

Post by pbearn »

Agree with posts above that they will likely increase the limit if you call & ask for it.

Also, I find that most new cards come with low limits - and if you start using the card to that limit, they will RAPIDLY automatically increase that limit. I had one rise from about $5k to about $15-20k within just a few months. Many times I find those increases to be faster than I'd like them to be - I'd rather keep the lower limit to minimize problems from losing the card, etc.
The Wizard
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Re: Changing FICO Score

Post by The Wizard »

Get a Capital One card with no FTF.
That should have a limit way higher than $4000.

Good to have a mix of credit cards and ATM/debit cards when travelling outside the country...
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birdy
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Re: Changing FICO Score

Post by birdy »

Thanks for all the replies.
.First CC with AAA. Issued through Bank of America (our primary bank)
.Income since retiring is $70,000 less now. Yes, we were socking lots of income away in investments while working. Had more money coming in than needed for living expenses.
.I made a stupid mistake before I found Bogleheads--I closed a lot of old credit cards not knowing that was not the right thing to do.
.It was drummed into me over the years that you were your FICO score!
.I called the credit card company. They said will reconsider credit limit in 3 months.
. I should have done research before opening this card for something better. Our travel company charges extra to use any credit card to pay for trips, so I just usually write them a check. The trips usually include airfare and hotel, so travel rewards haven't really been a consideration. This was an "impulse" credit card! None of our other cards have zero foreign transaction fee so thought it would be a good idea. Was reading Rick Steve's guide book which advised using credit cards in Italy instead of taking lots of cash (we normally just take cash).
.I guess I over reacted when I got the card approval. Having NO debt is a good thing! I am just not used to being told NO!

I learned a lot from every ones replies. In the past credit has always been easy to get (you know, easy when you don't really need it!) I have to get used to being retired and all that goes with that!

birdy
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whodidntante
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Re: Changing FICO Score

Post by whodidntante »

You may not need to request an increase to get one. After a few months, run the credit card close to the limit (e.g. $3,900), and pay it off on on time. I found that one issuer doubled my credit limit following.

One data point. I've got several cards with Chase because I churn, and a lot of available credit with them. The last time I applied for a new card they said they cannot give me more credit, and asked me to transfer part of my available credit to the new card. I've applied the technique above and now I have more available credit than they initially gave me. They bumped up the new card and the card I drew available credit from.

It's easier to simply get more cards from different issuers, if you are willing to do that.
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dm200
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Re: Changing FICO Score

Post by dm200 »

In the past credit has always been easy to get (you know, easy when you don't really need it!) I have to get used to being retired and all that goes with that!
Yes - things have changed in the last few years, for at least two (and possibly) reasons:
1. Credit card issuers suffered increased losses from cardholders not paying the amounts due
2. Increased government regulations required cutting back on issuance of credit cards to young (and other) students, others without documented "ability to repay", and similar
3. (possible) Some card holders have a large amount of card debt, and issuers now look at that with more scrutiny - both in issuing card initially and raising limits
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Re: Changing FICO Score

Post by NC 911 »

I am in the same boat as your are. No debt for 20 years and a Vanguard Flagship account. Years ago in a effort to make things simpler I closed unneeded CC accounts during the same time time my older bank loans were aging out and going off the system .

Two years ago I was buying my Daughter a new/used car at Carmax ( for cash ). I was lucky enough to get a get a bright salesperson who gave my daughter a speech about " it does not matter how much money you have only your credit rating " . That conversation caused me to check my credit and to my surprise it was around 650 + . Main reason was lack of available credit. My go to card has always been AMEX Gold and we pay any CC in full each month. What I learned was AMEX is a charge card and does not count on your credit limit.

Going forward I now have more CC than I need but my credit score is up to the good , excellent area. I do try to use the unneeded ones at least once a month. It is a pain and a lot of trouble. My main concern is credit score affects your home and auto insurance rates and many other things.
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birdy
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Re: Changing FICO Score

Post by birdy »

Thanks NC911:

I have 5-6 credit cards I never use (mainly only use 2 cards and pay them off every month).You are right! I need to use some of the other cards once in a while! We long ago paid off the house and we buy cars with cash the last two times. I dislike sitting down every month to pay bills. The more CC cards I use, the more bills I have to pay! I guess a small price compared to not getting credit if we don't want to sell mutual funds for a unexpected large expense in a down market. Thanks also for the reminder of Insurance rates. Want to make sure to keep them down---will have some larger healthcare premiums in September when Cobra runs out.

birdy
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dm200
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Re: Changing FICO Score

Post by dm200 »

NC 911 wrote:I am in the same boat as your are. No debt for 20 years and a Vanguard Flagship account. Years ago in a effort to make things simpler I closed unneeded CC accounts during the same time time my older bank loans were aging out and going off the system .
Two years ago I was buying my Daughter a new/used car at Carmax ( for cash ). I was lucky enough to get a get a bright salesperson who gave my daughter a speech about " it does not matter how much money you have only your credit rating " . That conversation caused me to check my credit and to my surprise it was around 650 + . Main reason was lack of available credit. My go to card has always been AMEX Gold and we pay any CC in full each month. What I learned was AMEX is a charge card and does not count on your credit limit.
Going forward I now have more CC than I need but my credit score is up to the good , excellent area. I do try to use the unneeded ones at least once a month. It is a pain and a lot of trouble. My main concern is credit score affects your home and auto insurance rates and many other things.
Very good points! You probably do not need to use the cards that often. Probably just enough so that the issuer does not cancel it. My guess is once or twice a year should be fine.
NC 911
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Re: Changing FICO Score

Post by NC 911 »

One other thing that may be of use is asking for a increase for existing CC. It is a tough sell when your limit is 10K and average charges are $250 or less. I was able to increase by a few thousand by calling CC companies. AMEX must follow this because they upped my Blue cash back without asking.
I am no expert but believe adding to existing is better than new credit mainly because of effect of "length of credit " .

Like others here I dislike the added paperwork, additional checks and entry into Quicken each year at tax time. On the other hand it has worked and the only other option I am aware of is taking out unneeded loans .
lakpr
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Re: Changing FICO Score

Post by lakpr »

On the subject of increasing credit limits on existing cards: there have been plenty of discussion on creditboards.com site that suggests Amex might increase up to three times the initial credit limit after 91 days have passed, and Discover will increase credit limit once every quarter with just a soft pull. There are anecdotal evidences that suggest a $4K limit on discover turning to a $45k limit within 3 years; but the key is that the card must be used every month, even if it is just a coffee once a month, and the balance on every statement must be paid in full. Discover does not like revolving balances.

Edited to add: the credit limit increase is automated, you just need to click the link on Discover's site. No speaking with a CSR required, nor advised because with humans, the result might be YMMV
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mickeyd
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Re: Changing FICO Score

Post by mickeyd »

Now that my FICO score regularly is listed on both my DC and VISA card I notice that it bounces from about 790 to 830 or so monthly for no apparent reason. I do not intend on taking out a loan soon, so it really makes no difference to me. Just one more thing in the world of high finance to not worry about.
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Phineas J. Whoopee
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Re: Changing FICO Score

Post by Phineas J. Whoopee »

mickeyd wrote:Now that my FICO score regularly is listed on both my DC and VISA card I notice that it bounces from about 790 to 830 or so monthly for no apparent reason. I do not intend on taking out a loan soon, so it really makes no difference to me. Just one more thing in the world of high finance to not worry about.
Furthermore, 790 is exceptionally high.
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tetractys
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Re: Changing FICO Score

Post by tetractys »

I've always thought credit limits were a product of earned trust, not credit rating. That's because the credit limits I've built over the years have been developed that way. I suppose with a couple million it might also be possible to buy that trust. -- Tet
BeneIRA
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Re: Changing FICO Score

Post by BeneIRA »

invst65 wrote:
birdy wrote:My spouse and I have been retired for almost 1 year now. We are taking a trip to Italy in March and decided to get a credit card with no overseas transaction fees.
What is an "overseas transaction fee"? I have never encountered this on any of my travels, mostly to Asia.

I use a lot of cash when I travel so I use my Fidelity Bank debit card at ATM's. Never had a problem getting money and the ATM fees are always refunded to my account anywhere in the world. Also insures you get a fair exchange rate on the U.S. dollar.
This is going to sound ridiculous, but my SO has a Fidelity Cash Management account and so has the debit card, but the website is so confusing that we have never used it. It really reimburses foreign ATM transaction fees and doesn't charge anything? IF so, we will be using it overseas as opposed to Ally which charges me 1%.

OP, you could always apply for a different card as well, but I am wondering if you might get a similar response. The Chase Sapphire Preferred, if you have never had it, would probably be great in your case, especially with the waived fee for the first year.
*3!4!/5!
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Re: Changing FICO Score

Post by *3!4!/5! »

BeneIRA wrote:
invst65 wrote:
birdy wrote:My spouse and I have been retired for almost 1 year now. We are taking a trip to Italy in March and decided to get a credit card with no overseas transaction fees.
What is an "overseas transaction fee"? I have never encountered this on any of my travels, mostly to Asia.

I use a lot of cash when I travel so I use my Fidelity Bank debit card at ATM's. Never had a problem getting money and the ATM fees are always refunded to my account anywhere in the world. Also insures you get a fair exchange rate on the U.S. dollar.
This is going to sound ridiculous, but my SO has a Fidelity Cash Management account and so has the debit card, but the website is so confusing that we have never used it. It really reimburses foreign ATM transaction fees and doesn't charge anything? IF so, we will be using it overseas as opposed to Ally which charges me 1%.

OP, you could always apply for a different card as well, but I am wondering if you might get a similar response. The Chase Sapphire Preferred, if you have never had it, would probably be great in your case, especially with the waived fee for the first year.
https://www.fidelity.com/cash-management/atm-debit-card
"Please note, there is a foreign transaction fee of one percent that is not waived"

It's Schwab that has the no FTF no ATM fee atm-debit-card.
invst65
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Re: Changing FICO Score

Post by invst65 »

*3!4!/5! wrote:
BeneIRA wrote:
invst65 wrote:
birdy wrote:My spouse and I have been retired for almost 1 year now. We are taking a trip to Italy in March and decided to get a credit card with no overseas transaction fees.
What is an "overseas transaction fee"? I have never encountered this on any of my travels, mostly to Asia.

I use a lot of cash when I travel so I use my Fidelity Bank debit card at ATM's. Never had a problem getting money and the ATM fees are always refunded to my account anywhere in the world. Also insures you get a fair exchange rate on the U.S. dollar.
This is going to sound ridiculous, but my SO has a Fidelity Cash Management account and so has the debit card, but the website is so confusing that we have never used it. It really reimburses foreign ATM transaction fees and doesn't charge anything? IF so, we will be using it overseas as opposed to Ally which charges me 1%.

OP, you could always apply for a different card as well, but I am wondering if you might get a similar response. The Chase Sapphire Preferred, if you have never had it, would probably be great in your case, especially with the waived fee for the first year.
https://www.fidelity.com/cash-management/atm-debit-card
"Please note, there is a foreign transaction fee of one percent that is not waived"

It's Schwab that has the no FTF no ATM fee atm-debit-card.
Well, I got my Fidelity VISA statement this month after travelling to Canada and now I know what a foreign transaction fee is. Didn't amount to a lot and when you figure you're still getting 2% cash back it's probably still better to use the card (assuming you ARE getting the 2%. There might be something in the fine print that says you don't get it on foreign transactions but nobody looks at the fine print and probably can't understand it if they do. Which would be by design, of course. Trust me, I used to work for credit card companies and if they can rake in a million dollars by obscuring the terms of the contract and the legal teams say they can't lose a lawsuit over it, they absolute will).
dbltrbl
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Re: Changing FICO Score

Post by dbltrbl »

My experience with Penfed was they started me at very high Credit limit despite having very little money in account with them and having the account open less than 1 month. Varies from issuer to issuer.
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