docdaddy wrote:Situation: make about $170K a year, mortgage is about $1200 per month, have a Discover with a too high balance (about $15K) and rate of about 16.99, limit is about $17K. Another CC from my credit union, balance is about $9K, limit about $10K, rate is 10.99%. FICO is around 750.
It's never just about score itself and you don't have just one score. With a card at 88% (15K/17K) and another at 90% (9K/10K) applying for a new card with the intent to balance transfer is a bad idea. High revolving utilization will restrict the limits and APR that you will qualify for.
docdaddy wrote:A card with only $3000 limit and 18.99% is not something I would have accepted had I been talking with someone on the phone.
Talking on the phone would have made no difference. APR's and limits are not disclosed until they've pulled your credit and approved you.
Revolving utilization is a significant scoring and risk factor. General advice is do not exceed 30%. You've not only exceeded that on 2 cards but you've maxed one and you've nearly maxed another. These are major red flags and applying with utilization like that is a bad idea as you've discovered.
Back in 2012 my revolving utilization was well over 60%. I didn't know anything back then and I also thought that a BT card would help so I applied for the Slate. I was approved with a $2K limit and the highest APR offered. That limit was of no use to me. 6 months later I had my revolving utilization well under 10%. At that point Chase instantly approved 2 cards within a day of each other with $25K limits each. Cards with APR ranges were issued at the lowest APR. I'm not saying that your credit supports such limits or APR's. This is just an example of how constricting revolving utilization can be.
docdaddy wrote:But my feeling is that, having just been approved for this, it probably hurts my chances of trying to get a different card now with a higher limit and lower interest once the 0% runs out - is that true? Also, if I call and cancel the card I just got approved for (it hasn't even arrived yet) does that also hurt me, especially in terms of trying to get a better deal with another card?
Your credit profile was already an issue before you applied for that card. When you applied for that card you incurred a hard pull. When the account reported it reduced your average age of accounts. Closing the card at this point will not reverse those effects. Closing now could look bad on manual review but it probably doesn't matter for an automated review. Again, your problem is you extremely high revolving utilization. The only way to address that is to reduce those card balances.
You'll want to reduce them ASAP. Short term high utilization generally isn't an issue but prolonged high utilization can lead to adverse action. Things like balance chasing and closure will make your situation worse as they will cause those accounts to spike to around 100%.
Make sure you're budgeting and sticking to your budget. Aim to get to where you're paying your statement balances in full each month.
Assuming that the cards mentioned are your only cards and that the new card has a 0 balance, the new card is reducing your overall utilization to 80%. If you closed that card your overall utilization would increase to 89%.