Making progress- just got approved for a Green .

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Joined: Wed Jul 18, 2012 3:43 pm
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Making progress- just got approved for a Green .

Postby veegenose » Wed Jul 18, 2012 5:24 pm

Two years ago, I had a FICO score of 575. I was ignorant and misinformed regarding credit and was generally irresponsible with my finances.

Since then, I've learned to manage my money better and make credit work for me. I learned to pay down my credit card debt, learned about credit utilization, credit diversity, etc-- in short, I learned how to play the credit game. My FICO score, as of July 2012, is 698. I've been so happy with my progress and I'm excited to work further to see that number increase more and more.

Fastfoward to two weeks ago, where (to my surprise) I see an envelope from American Express saying that I was "pre-approved" for the Green Card. I honestly thought this was a mistake given my overall credit profile/history, but I decided to give it a shot anyway. Turns out, I got approved! I should be getting it in the mail anytime soon now....

Getting approved for the AmEx Green Card feels like I'm finally turning over a new leaf in my life. But I still have lots to learn and I'm looking for advice on how to continue to move forward.

Here is the basics of my credit profile:
  • FICO score as of 7/12 : 698
  • General Credit Cards: Credit One Bank (~7 years old, <10% utilized, $1000 credit limit)
  • Store Credit Cards: Macy's Card (~1 year old, <10% utilized, $300 credit limit), Walmart Credit Card (~1 year old, <10% utilized, $1,400 credit limit)

My main concern is the Credit One Bank credit card. I pay $75 a year for a card with no rewards. I want to close it, but it's my oldest card by a few years. Should I keep it (and continue paying the annual fee) or should I close it (and have my average age of credit cards severely drop)?

Another pressing concern is my overall lack of diversity in general credit cards. Once it comes in, I'll have an American Express card to add to my Credit One Bank card. I'm looking to apply to a couple of major banks (Capital One, Discover, Chase). Is this a good idea? If so, what banks/cards do you recommend?

Last and most importantly, as this is my first post (!), I'd like to thank everyone for their contribution to this awesome community. It has helped me SO MUCH and I'm sure it'll continue to do so. Cheers!

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Location: California

Postby SteveT » Thu Jul 19, 2012 8:19 pm


I would apply for another Visa or MasterCard. after that I would not apply for a while. Have you looked into a credit union? They have great rates and are pragmatic on their approval process.

I heard your AAOA will not be effected if you close the Credit One Account as long as the account is still showing on your CR. It can effect your utilization rate though.

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Location: Baltimore

Postby Ratfacedudeguy » Thu Jul 19, 2012 9:17 pm

That's correct. Closed accounts will continue to contribute towards your average age of account for up to 10 years. In your situation though, your overall utilization would spike drastically since that card carries such a high percentage of your total open credit. I'd at least get a couple more major cards under your belt to at least replace the $1000 line before closing it. Another thing to keep in mind is that charge cards such as the green do no report a limit and therefore do not contribute to or detract from your utilization in any way. But yes, it's definitely time to ditch the Credit One card.
Amex Green - NPSL - 05/12
Amex Zync - NPSL - 06/12
Discover it - $7750 - 11/12
Chase Sapphire Preferred Visa Signature - $5000 - 11/12
SECU Platinum Visa - $5000 - 08/08
Bank of America Cash Rewards Platinum Plus Visa - $3000 - 06/08
Citi Diamond Preferred Mastercard - $3000 - 05/12
GECRB Old Navy Visa - $2500 - 11/12
Chase Amazon Visa - $2000 - 11/12
Chase Freedom Visa - $2000 - 07/12
Citi Thank You Visa - $1000 - 06/12
Amex Blue Cash Everyday - $1000 - 01/13

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