Being an applicant, you should first determine your needs and have your credit history evaluated. If your credit history has a good rating, choose a card issuer. Then, go to the office of the issuer, or visit the card issuer’s website, fill out a form, read the credit terms, and sign on the dotted line. The approval of your credit card will depend on the type of credit card you are applying for and your credit rating. If you have a good credit rating, the card application will be approved quickly.
The usual place where we apply for credit cards is the bank. The security offered by banks makes applicants choose these over other issuers, especially if they apply for a credit card online. Different banks offer more or less similar credit terms and benefits, and charge similar fees and interest rates. Determining the bank or card issuer with the credit terms that will best suit you will be much easier if you keep these things in mind:
1) Check your credit history and report. Credit bureaus will give you a free copy of your credit report if you were denied any credit 60 days before the day of your application. If not, you’ll have to pay $9 per report. Clear anything up and have errors corrected before applying for a card.
2) It is not necessary to have any account in a bank to apply for a credit card. Some people think that an applicant needs to have an existing savings or checking account in a bank before they could apply for a credit card. Doing so would cost you more than what you are really applying for. However, having an existing account in the issuing bank may garner you a low limit card for easy payment schemes.
3) Be honest in filling out the forms. Giving inaccurate or wrong information to the bank will spell trouble for an applicant, especially regarding your paying capabilities and personal information. If the bank, or any credit card company, finds out that the information you gave them is false, your application would be immediately denied.
4) Understand the credit terms of your credit card account. Make sure you know how much interest will be charged to your purchases. Know how long the bank will wait for you to pay the monthly due before they charge the interest rate. Be aware of the penalties that you could incur if you pay up late.
5) Try to build a good credit history if your card is not issued immediately. Having short-term loans with a bank, or making credit purchases with a local department store or gas station, usually over a six-month period, are the easiest ways to do this. Just make sure that your payments are reported to and recorded by the credit bureaus.
6) First time cardholders should take their first credit card, even if it has a relatively high interest rate. Experts say that an applicant should just be prompt in making your monthly payments. Doing so would allow you to renegotiate your card’s rate six months after first using it.
7) Don’t apply for many credit cards simultaneously. Credit investigators see this as a sign that you are not capable of paying your debts. They assume the worst — that you will use the credit limit of each card — and sometimes use these cards to apply payments to each other in a round robin mode. That’s not good to the investigators.
A rejected card application hurts your chances for a future application. Many people receive these “pre-approved mail cards”, and think that they have an instant credit card upon application. These mail cards only allow you to apply for a card with little or no questions asked. Yet, you could still be rejected.