December 2015 Garden Club

For just about anything you want to get off your chest about credit cards.
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JonE
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Re: December 2015 Garden Club

Postby JonE » Thu Dec 03, 2015 12:39 pm

yfan wrote:
kdm31091 wrote:I think my interest in maximizing rewards has peaked, and so it's become easier to garden and focus on growing what I have and maintaining a solid set of cards vs chasing every penny in rewards with tons of new accounts.

Oh, I still have plenty of interest in maximizing rewards, but I don't need a crazy number of inquiries with an equally crazy number of cards to juggle to do that. I think that a lot of people would do better to focus on the benefits offered by the cards they already have.

For example, a whole lot of the store card syndrome can be solved by using Discover Deals and shopping online. You get the 5% cashback like a store card (or more) if the store is listed (double that if you are enrolled in that promo), and lots of retailers now offer store pickups for those online orders - so it's a win, win. Amex Offers is another great way to get small "bonuses" for small spends without grabbing a new card every other day. BankAmeriDeals can also be good depending on what you are spending on. And Citi Offers, which is new but turning out to be useful for me. I know they don't have the Citi Offers on the Double Cash (yet), but I lucked out having a Diamond Preferred card, which while not a direct rewards card (well it has rewards but hard to redeem the "Easy Deals" points) does get the offers.

I've probably saved at least as much proportionally using these deals as I would have applying for a card with a bonus.


Yes, I looked at Discover Deals since I've gotten it, and am pretty impressed. Better deals on Apple merchandise than Chase.

My next move would be to figure out what I'll be using Chase Freedom for, and I think I've figured it out. Since I'll be dumping CareCredit in the not too distant future I may use that for medical/dental bills and other emergency spending. Now I'll just have to have the limit raised from the $2k it is now. :rolleyes:
Wallet: Chase Freedom, Discover IT
Chopping Block: Synchrony
Future: TBD


9Cline
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Re: December 2015 Garden Club

Postby 9Cline » Thu Dec 03, 2015 8:01 pm

Hi All, doing it again this mth.... same goals:
1. work on paying 0% promos off
2. take NO inqs, and
3. just watch what I got age.......
LOWES, DISCOVER-iT, MACY'S-AMEX PREMIER ELITE, AMEX-EDP, CHASE FREEDOM VS, AMEX-BCP, CITI-DC WEMC, JCP-PLAT MC, BELK ELITE, CITI BESTBUY, CHASE SAPPHIRE , HOME DEPOT :beat:

kdm31091
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Re: December 2015 Garden Club

Postby kdm31091 » Thu Dec 03, 2015 9:56 pm

yfan wrote:
kdm31091 wrote:I think my interest in maximizing rewards has peaked, and so it's become easier to garden and focus on growing what I have and maintaining a solid set of cards vs chasing every penny in rewards with tons of new accounts.

Oh, I still have plenty of interest in maximizing rewards, but I don't need a crazy number of inquiries with an equally crazy number of cards to juggle to do that. I think that a lot of people would do better to focus on the benefits offered by the cards they already have.

For example, a whole lot of the store card syndrome can be solved by using Discover Deals and shopping online. You get the 5% cashback like a store card (or more) if the store is listed (double that if you are enrolled in that promo), and lots of retailers now offer store pickups for those online orders - so it's a win, win. Amex Offers is another great way to get small "bonuses" for small spends without grabbing a new card every other day. BankAmeriDeals can also be good depending on what you are spending on. And Citi Offers, which is new but turning out to be useful for me. I know they don't have the Citi Offers on the Double Cash (yet), but I lucked out having a Diamond Preferred card, which while not a direct rewards card (well it has rewards but hard to redeem the "Easy Deals" points) does get the offers.

I've probably saved at least as much proportionally using these deals as I would have applying for a card with a bonus.



I think what I mean is basically that while I still like to maximize rewards, my interest no longer lies in seeking out brand new cards every time I want another 0.5% on something lol

yfan
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Re: December 2015 Garden Club

Postby yfan » Fri Dec 04, 2015 12:06 am

kdm31091 wrote:I think what I mean is basically that while I still like to maximize rewards, my interest no longer lies in seeking out brand new cards every time I want another 0.5% on something lol

Money on the table!!!!! :beat:

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CarefulBuilder14
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Re: December 2015 Garden Club

Postby CarefulBuilder14 » Fri Dec 04, 2015 12:16 am

I'm thinking I may actually spend several months in the garden, or at least make 2016 a very app-light year.

I'm at or very close to my credit max with Chase. I don't want to close any of the cards I have or thin out my existing CLs.

Amex has some good cards, and I have some CL wiggle room, but I'm not getting any good targeted signup bonuses (and the public ones don't interest me).

Barclaycard doesn't have much that interests me. Maybe Hawaiian Air.

I've been reading too many Citi and BofA horror stories lately to want a card from them right now. Plus, I do feel pretty happy with my current rewards/complexity tradeoff. New issuers and new websites mean more complexity than another Amex/Chase/Barclaycard account.

I still have only one card that's not considered "new credit" (10 of my 11 accounts are less than two years old).
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

kdm31091
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Re: December 2015 Garden Club

Postby kdm31091 » Fri Dec 04, 2015 7:54 am

CarefulBuilder14 wrote:I'm thinking I may actually spend several months in the garden, or at least make 2016 a very app-light year.

I'm at or very close to my credit max with Chase. I don't want to close any of the cards I have or thin out my existing CLs.

Amex has some good cards, and I have some CL wiggle room, but I'm not getting any good targeted signup bonuses (and the public ones don't interest me).

Barclaycard doesn't have much that interests me. Maybe Hawaiian Air.

I've been reading too many Citi and BofA horror stories lately to want a card from them right now. Plus, I do feel pretty happy with my current rewards/complexity tradeoff. New issuers and new websites mean more complexity than another Amex/Chase/Barclaycard account.

I still have only one card that's not considered "new credit" (10 of my 11 accounts are less than two years old).


Right, probably a good plan. I see one of the "600k club" members on MF finally got some AA - from Barclay's. But we all knew it was coming since they claim "no more apps" and app for another card every week anyway. Nobody's invincible. It's good to see someone (you) with some restraint. I will say that that poster's reaction is at least slightly more reasonable in that they aren't calling the EO and spazzing at Barclay.

Vermonster
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Re: December 2015 Garden Club

Postby Vermonster » Fri Dec 04, 2015 8:11 am

CarefulBuilder14 wrote:I'm thinking I may actually spend several months in the garden, or at least make 2016 a very app-light year.

I'm at or very close to my credit max with Chase. I don't want to close any of the cards I have or thin out my existing CLs.

Amex has some good cards, and I have some CL wiggle room, but I'm not getting any good targeted signup bonuses (and the public ones don't interest me).

Barclaycard doesn't have much that interests me. Maybe Hawaiian Air.

I've been reading too many Citi and BofA horror stories lately to want a card from them right now. Plus, I do feel pretty happy with my current rewards/complexity tradeoff. New issuers and new websites mean more complexity than another Amex/Chase/Barclaycard account.

I still have only one card that's not considered "new credit" (10 of my 11 accounts are less than two years old).


I've always wondered, how does one know when they are at their limit with without apping for new cards? Because I know an approval with a $500 limit is kinda a big red flag with Chase, and Amex will do an FR. Is it just feel?

Not going to lie, I follow your card choices and let you be the guinea pig. I'm still really interested in the IHG but don't have plans to travel nationally next year. I might wait for another 80k offer then go for it. It seems like you find a use for it even without making it a main card.
Chase Freedom $9k~~Chase Sapphire Preferred $6.5k~~Amex Blue Cash Preferred $12.4k~~Citi Double Cash $4.7k

kdm31091
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Re: December 2015 Garden Club

Postby kdm31091 » Fri Dec 04, 2015 8:26 am

To me, when you start seeing lower limits and higher APRs, it's time to take a break. Many people ignore these signs and just keep apping and reconning anyway, but it's usually fairly obvious when you really need to stop. The amount of "abuse" one's profile will tolerate with HPs/AAOA ding/new accounts varies of course, but generally most lenders do not want to see more than a small handful of inquiries in the past 6 months for the best approvals (high limit/low APR).

I would say also it's just a feeling you get. Trust your instinct. Carefulbuilder seems to know when it's time to stop, and that's a good thing. He wants his bonuses, but he isn't stupid about it.

Some lenders are less conservative than others, but generally you yield the best results by waiting as long as possible and letting inquiries fall off. Contrary to the "HPs dont matter" meme, yes they do. Their impact fades over time of course, but they're still there and show credit seeking. So it behooves most people to wait at least until most of the HPs are no longer "recent" (6 months+). In some cases it won't matter for APR (IHG has a set APR anyway), but you still want a decent limit.

I'm definitely in the garden for awhile. I originally said "end of 2016" but I find if you set the goal too far out, it just seems so far away that it feels impossible. So for now, I'm just saying sometime in the spring of 2016. Then again, there's really nothing on the market that I want or need or that would give me a huge gain at the moment over what I have. But I like seeing my AAOA increase and the HPs age, so I'm not likely to kick my score down again anytime soon.

JonE
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Re: December 2015 Garden Club

Postby JonE » Fri Dec 04, 2015 10:14 am

FINALLY paid Walmart off. Won't use it but sparingly over the next year or so. Just enough to keep it open. CareCredit is next on the list.

And I'm reconsidering closing ANYTHING I have right now since I'm still technically rebuilding. Maybe in a year I'll see where I'm at credit wise, some things could change in between now and then that might be to my benefit.
Wallet: Chase Freedom, Discover IT
Chopping Block: Synchrony
Future: TBD

yfan
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Re: December 2015 Garden Club

Postby yfan » Fri Dec 04, 2015 10:37 am

JonE wrote:FINALLY paid Walmart off. Won't use it but sparingly over the next year or so. Just enough to keep it open. CareCredit is next on the list.

And I'm reconsidering closing ANYTHING I have right now since I'm still technically rebuilding. Maybe in a year I'll see where I'm at credit wise, some things could change in between now and then that might be to my benefit.

Well done, and keep it up!



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