Rethinking My Amex App

For just about anything you want to get off your chest about credit cards.
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Vattené
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Postby Vattené » Sat Oct 11, 2014 5:55 pm

No! I can't be banned from the Garden! Ok maybe I might take an inquiry, but it is just one sin - surely none of us can claim to be perfect. What do I need to do to get back in? I can bring my own Kool-Aid. I can cut off all ties with family, friends, loved ones. There must be some way to be accepted back in The Community.
-Vattené
FICO-8:
EX - 827 (4/17) | TU - 812 (4/17)
Primary Cards:
American Express EveryDay - $20,000 (10/14)
Discover it - $23,000 (2/14)
AU on Barclay Sallie Mae - $10,000 (8/15)
plus several store accounts of varying usefulness now


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CarefulBuilder14
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Postby CarefulBuilder14 » Sat Oct 11, 2014 7:29 pm

Maybe we need an official 'Just apply and quit agonizing over every tiny detail!' club.

Instead of promoting gardening and careful research, it can be about getting people with good credit (and who have made a sound decision or are deciding between a few good options) to finally apply for cards they have been delaying getting without a good reason.

I, for instance, would be perfectly fair game if I haven't gotten a real travel card of some kind by April. Vattené could be pressured to get an Amex by mid-December.
Very useful: SchwabPlat, CSP, IHG, Costco (was AA Plat), Freedom, SPG, Prestige (retention)
Somewhat useful: Discover, ED (was EDP), BCE, Hyatt
SD with activity alerts, might close: Arrival

Might add: Proper business card, CSR, Ritz, Delta Gold, First Tech, BofA Travel PH, Aviator Red

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Vattené
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Update

Postby Vattené » Tue Oct 21, 2014 9:08 pm

No need to be pressured now. That would probably be a very tiny club, but I should get in now. I finally applied.

Looks like I was approved with a CL of $11,500

Better start agonizing over the Arrival+ now if I want it to be in my wallet within 9 months ;) JK!
-Vattené
FICO-8:
EX - 827 (4/17) | TU - 812 (4/17)
Primary Cards:
American Express EveryDay - $20,000 (10/14)
Discover it - $23,000 (2/14)
AU on Barclay Sallie Mae - $10,000 (8/15)
plus several store accounts of varying usefulness now

thom02099
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Postby thom02099 » Tue Oct 21, 2014 9:30 pm

Vattené wrote:No! I can't be banned from the Garden! Ok maybe I might take an inquiry, but it is just one sin - surely none of us can claim to be perfect. [color="red"]What do I need to do to get back in?[/color] I can bring my own Kool-Aid. I can cut off all ties with family, friends, loved ones. [color="red"] There must be some way to be accepted back in The Community[/color].


You'll need to throw yourself at the mercy of a certain moderator "over there", who has a penchant for moving posts around. You'll need to get a root canal done, with no anesthetics. You'll need to say 100 "no inquiries" and 200 "forgive me FICO for I have sinned". And the Kool-Aid needs to be grape.
Retired, and in the process of retiring cards!
EQ = 846 EX=828 TU = 836 as of 02/2016

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CarefulBuilder14
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Postby CarefulBuilder14 » Tue Oct 21, 2014 10:18 pm

Vattené wrote:No need to be pressured now. That would probably be a very tiny club, but I should get in now. I finally applied.

Looks like I was approved with a CL of $11,500

Better start agonizing over the Arrival+ now if I want it to be in my wallet within 9 months ;) JK!


Congrats! It sounds like the history on those store cards from 2011 definitely helped to get a limit like that.
Very useful: SchwabPlat, CSP, IHG, Costco (was AA Plat), Freedom, SPG, Prestige (retention)
Somewhat useful: Discover, ED (was EDP), BCE, Hyatt
SD with activity alerts, might close: Arrival

Might add: Proper business card, CSR, Ritz, Delta Gold, First Tech, BofA Travel PH, Aviator Red

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Vattené
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Postby Vattené » Tue Oct 21, 2014 11:15 pm

thom02099 wrote:You'll need to throw yourself at the mercy of a certain moderator "over there", who has a penchant for moving posts around. You'll need to get a root canal done, with no anesthetics. You'll need to say 100 "no inquiries" and 200 "forgive me FICO for I have sinned". And the Kool-Aid needs to be grape.

Such a small penance for such a wretched sinner. I know I am not worthy, but The One True Moderator surely is merciful.



CarefulBuilder14 wrote:Congrats! It sounds like the history on those store cards from 2011 definitely helped to get a limit like that.

Thanks! I got the "pending approval" message when I applied and got worried (I know it isn't a hard no, but we still all like to see instant approvals). I went to the application status page right away just to see what it would say and it said mine was approved; then I checked my email and I already had an approval message. So I set up an online account to see that as my available credit. No complaints here - I am happy to be with Amex and thrilled with that limit (Discover just denied a CLI request, so I have no hard feelings about spreading some loyalty out).

It looks like they helped indeed! They must be REALLY starting to pay off now that almost all of my store accounts' inquiries have fallen off. Worked out well for me, too, because at the time I hadn't educated myself on credit and just went for them here and there primarily for the upfront one-time discounts and secondarily because "oh, well, this will help me establish a credit history early on anyway so I might as well go for it, right?"
-Vattené
FICO-8:
EX - 827 (4/17) | TU - 812 (4/17)
Primary Cards:
American Express EveryDay - $20,000 (10/14)
Discover it - $23,000 (2/14)
AU on Barclay Sallie Mae - $10,000 (8/15)
plus several store accounts of varying usefulness now

takeshi
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Postby takeshi » Wed Oct 22, 2014 8:29 am

Vattené wrote:I still want to get in with Amex in 2014, though. Now I am thinking I will just go for the EveryDay. This will give me access to the MR system and I can do more research on it to see how beneficial I can make it for myself.

Sounds backwards to me. I'd suggest researching MR and then getting an MR card if you can make use of MR.

IIRC, like UR, maximum value is generally attained by transferring so you need to look at redemptions for the transfer partners. You can even just start with the list of partners to see if you can use them. I cany rule out MR for myself just on that basis. UR's partners are much more useful to me.

From your other thread:
Vattené wrote:The BCE was actually the runner up to Discover back when I was deciding which prime card I wanted to go for first (the free FICO scores and my lack of supermarket spending is what pushed Discover over the edge for me). At this point, though, I feel like another cash back card won't really benefit me since I already have a strong one. Discover's cash back program is more versatile than Amex's, too.

You really just have to crunch the numbers instead of relying on feel. Consider the spend categories that Discover doesn't cover and your volume on those categories. It's really difficult to say what would benefit you more but you should have the numbers you need to make that assessment.

If you don't travel much and you don't have much travel spend I would guess that a miles/point card would not be a good fit. They generally benefit those who run large volumes of spend through them. I'm not as paranoid about nerfing as some others but I would still be hesitant to keep any significant amount of miles/points sitting in a rewards program for any length of time.

Again, crunch the numbers. It's possible that another cash back card may be best suited to you. Or that a miles/point card would work for you. There's just no telling with what has been provided so far.

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Vattené
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Postby Vattené » Wed Oct 22, 2014 9:55 am

It is backwards. It's not by any means ideal, but I just went for it since it has no AF and I was wanting to get in with Amex for backdating purposes. I won't get much more (if anything more) in cashback from an Amex card than I am already getting with Discover, so I just decided to take a leap. I have read accounts (which is anecdotal evidence, but all I have to go on) that suggests between 1% and 2% is a probable return. I also understand that redemption rates vary wildly depending on the specific destination and dates. My biggest problem was you can't see redemption rates directly from Amex unless you are already a member.

If I start accumulating MR and find that they won't be too useful to me, I can more or less stop using the card and get SOMETHING for what points I will have. It might not be optimal, but the marginal loss at that level of rewards points won't amount to much. Granted it is a risk, but I am willing to take it because in absolute terms there really isn't much at steak.

I was unclear earlier. I didn't mean "feel" as in "my gut feeling is that this will be optimal" but more in the sense that "I like this route better based on my personal preferences." I am willing to sacrifice a marginal increase of 1% for 3/4 of the year on gas, for example, for fewer cards and to keep my rewards all in one bucket. I solicited advice in a much earlier thread about travel benefits since I AM such an infrequent traveler. I wouldn't pay an AF for a travel card for which I would barely use the travel perks. But it is worth it to me if the return rate is reliably higher than cash back given how much spending is required to accumulate the points in the first place .
-Vattené
FICO-8:
EX - 827 (4/17) | TU - 812 (4/17)
Primary Cards:
American Express EveryDay - $20,000 (10/14)
Discover it - $23,000 (2/14)
AU on Barclay Sallie Mae - $10,000 (8/15)
plus several store accounts of varying usefulness now

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PlyrStar93
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Postby PlyrStar93 » Wed Oct 22, 2014 12:43 pm

Nice approval limit, AMEX tend to be very generous when giving limits to someone with established history.

If you have difficulty on finding a frequent flier program, you still can take advantage of AMEX offers, in which you can get statement credits for making purchases. There are other offers like free hotel nights with certain days stay.

For myself, despite not having any Membership Rewards card, my Citi card is in a situation without the ability to transfer points. I can earn a lot of points each month, but the only thing I can redeem with the best value is gift cards, then coming down to Amazon shop with points. MR points can actually be used there, but the value would be 0.7 cents/point. My ThankYou points worth 0.8 cents/point there.

If you wouldn't transfer MR points to programs, then the best option would be redeeming the points for retail gift cards (i.e. not AMEX prepaid gift cards). Those gift cards can realize 1% cash back in most cases, while AMEX gift cards usually make MR points worth 0.5 cents/point.
Citi Forward Visa $5000 10/2012 | American Express Blue Cash Everyday $8000 2/2014 | Discover it $7000 5/2014
Chase Freedom Visa Signature $7000 6/2014 | Citi ThankYou Premier Visa Signature $5000 1/2015
All EMV.

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Vattené
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Postby Vattené » Mon Oct 27, 2014 10:50 pm

I've been meaning to thank you for the advice, PlyrStar93, but haven't had much to add beyond that. It's nice to know there is a way to reasonably expect a 1% return on points (and therefore a 1.2% return on spending), which is as good as I'm getting anyway with non-category Discover spending.
-Vattené
FICO-8:
EX - 827 (4/17) | TU - 812 (4/17)
Primary Cards:
American Express EveryDay - $20,000 (10/14)
Discover it - $23,000 (2/14)
AU on Barclay Sallie Mae - $10,000 (8/15)
plus several store accounts of varying usefulness now



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