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How to Get Approved for Credit Cards

Credit card approvedGetting approved for a credit card isn’t as simple as filing out an application. Credit card issuers are extremely picky. There is a minimum criteria for credit cards, and if you don’t meet this minimum, the credit card company may reject your application. Credit is a necessity when financing a car or buying a house. Getting approved for a credit card can build or rebuild your credit history, and open the door to future credit. The more you know about the application process, the easier it is to obtain credit.

Know What Creditors Want

Knowing the factors that play into the decision process can help you get approved for a credit card. Credit card issuers don’t arbitrarily approved new lines of credit. They will scrutinize your application to ensure your ability to repay any debt that you incur. Credit card applications inquire about your employment status, as well as your individual income. Credit card applications no longer ask for household income, which once allowed applicants with low income or no income to qualify for credit cards. This change currently makes it harder for stay-at-home parents or low wage earners to obtain credit. Creditors want to see consistent and livable income. If you have neither, getting approved for a credit card will require a joint applicant, such as a spouse or parent.

Know Your Credit Score

Your credit score and history determines the type of credit card you can get. Prior to applying for a credit card, or any type of credit, pull your credit scores. The entire process takes a few minutes and you can request this information from MyFico.com. Knowing your credit range provides clues on the type of credit that you’re able to obtain. For example, if your credit score is 620 or higher, you’re a good candidate for an unsecured credit card offered by a bank — providing you meet the income and employment requirements. With a score below 620, some banks will not approve your application for an unsecured credit card. If your credit score falls in the “low” category, getting approved for a credit card may require applying for a bank secured credit card. They work the same as other types of credit cards, but they require a security deposit.

Stop Looking Desperate

Credit reports keep a record of all your credit applications or inquiries that occur within a two-year period. Credit card issuers will check your credit before approving or denying your application, and they will pay attention to your number of recent applications. Understandably, you might not recognize the danger of excessive credit inquiries. But the more applications you submit, the lower your chances of getting approved for a credit card. Credit card issuers are cautious when credit reports reveal several recent inquiries. They might view you as credit hungry or fear that you’re experiencing financial troubles. Plus, too many inquiries can lower your FICO score. Spread out your applications (one every three or four months) and only apply for new credit when necessary.

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