Anyone have any good tips on getting better credit cards or just general tips to build credit based on my circumstances?First some background info:
1. I'm a full time web developer making around 26,000$, more if you count overtime, but I generally don't put it on applications since its so sporadic month to month. I live fairly cheap with ALL my expenses topping out at most 400$ a month, not counting food.
2. I have 1 local credit union credit card with a 500$ limit and 9.99% fixed rate. Generally its sat between 30-150$, it did hit 500$ around 500$ for a month because of a emergency about 5 months ago. Now that I've been researching credit in the last week or so I've learned it would be better to completely pay it off each month rather than having it sit there and have done that. I've had it for 29 months with no late payments.
3. I also have 1 small auto loan(<4000$) with a co-signer for little over a year. Been making payments that are much higher than min for the 60 month term, and if needed I could pay it off completely in 2 months time but I figured it would be better to have it sit there than pay off a 60month loan completely in 2 years and end up with only a single active credit line on my report. Never had a late payment.
4. My scores as of a week ago are, Equifax/678, TransUnion/989, Experian/701.
FICO I found out today from amex rejection is 720.What I've applied for in the last week:
A credit increase on my existing CC, I was told they dont even offer that card anymore but what they could offer was their new credit card with a 1000$ limit, 7.9-13.9% var (they offered me 11.50%), but to do it I would have close my current CC with them and roll any balance left into my new one. I declined the offer thinking having my credit line with 2.5 years of good payments closed just so I could have a 500$ limit increase would hurt me far more than it would help.
Next I applied for a Citi Platinum Select MasterCard and got this message at the end of the application, "You application requires more time to process we will contact you in the next 30 days with a decision." Which I've been told by many people that 99% of the time that means I've been denied.
I then applied for a Capitol One Cash Rewards Mastercard, I've been approved for this but only with a 500$ limit and with the highest APR on the card 22.9%.
I also applied for an Amex Blue card tonight, a longshot I know but was hoping to get something with a higher limit. I was denied for these reasons it said
Number of trades (Experian)
Too few credit card accounts on which, in our estimation, you have paid a majority of the balance in recent months. (Experian)
Too many recent credit checks. (Experian)My problem:
I know I'm young and not exactly rolling in the money plus I could just be over estimating what I should be able to get in credit currently, but I have very cheap monthly expenses and what little credit I do have I've never made a late payment on. Along with the fact all my scores fall within the average/fair range it seems like I should be able get more than 500$ limit credit cards with a high APR. I feel like in 6-12months or so I'll just be in the same spot since small limit cards like mine don't help very much with building credit and aren't very piratical if your supposed to stay under 20% usage.
Anyways thanks for putting up with my rambling and for for any help in advance.