How many credit cards can you apply for at once?

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LadyinRed
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How many credit cards can you apply for at once?

Postby LadyinRed » Mon Jul 23, 2012 8:24 pm

I made a big mistake and I was wondering if anyone might have any insight for me.

For my credit cards history, I've been using the CapitalOne Venture Card as my main card for over two years. I also have a Chase Disney card that I got in college about 6 years ago but haven't been using it much since I got the CapitalOne. I pay my card off every month and have zero credit card debt.

I recently came across this forum last week and have been amazed by some of the articles about the rewards cards you can get. I thought it was a great idea to have multiple rewards cards - it seemed like such a great idea to get 5% back in different categories. I read that as long as you paid your balance it really didn't affect your score much to have many cards.

So I was really dumb and applied for three credit cards at once, in one week.

First I applied for the Chase Freedom and got accepted. Then, I applied for the AMEX Blue Cash Preferred. I got a response from them saying that the website was down and I'd hear back in 7-10 business days. Then I applied for the US Bank Cash+. I got denied.

It wasn't until I got denied that I realized that something was wrong. It didn't even occur to me that multiple inquiries can really hurt you.

I know I made a mistake, but how much did I just hurt myself? I'm afraid to check my credit myself because I don't know if that will affect my score too! Help!
AMEX: Blue Cash Preferred (6% on groceries, 3% gas & dept stores)
Capital One: Venture (2 points per $1, equivalent to 2%)
Chase: Freedom (rotating 5% categories), Disney Rewards (1 point per $1, Disney benefits)
US Bank: Cash+ (5% bookstores / 5% Electronic Stores)


Ratfacedudeguy
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Postby Ratfacedudeguy » Mon Jul 23, 2012 11:26 pm

Hi there, and welcome to the forums!

You really didn't do too much damage by the inquiries themselves. Really, the string of inquiries themselves will be a more adverse factor to your lenders' respective decisions than the effect they have on your credit score itself. In other words, the recent inquiries will have a small but definite short term effect on your credit score. The less recent inquiries you already have, the more of an impact a new inquiry will have, and vice versa. Even though each inquiry only gives you a small ding on your credit score, lenders will see a cluster of new inquiries as a high risk factor, often overriding your high credit score. Exceptions to this include shopping around for auto loans and mortgages. I've personally gotten to a point where my credit score doesn't even care about new inquiries anymore -- I believe I have 20 in the past 2 years on my Equifax report, and at least the last one had literally zero effect on my FICO score. This is not something I would recommend in the least, but it's certainly not worth the reaction that people on other credit forums would surely have (burning at the stake, angry mobs, punting babies, etc.). That being said, inquiries are only one piece of the broad spectrum of factors that lenders use in processing applications, and it's very rare that you'd be declined for inquiries alone.

Also, don't ever be afraid to check your own credit. You can check it as many times as you want to with absolutely no affect on your score. Checking your own score falls into a category of inquiries called "soft inquiries." Other examples of soft inquiries include when a landlord checks a prospective tenant's credit and when banks pull your credit strictly for marketing (pre-approved) offers. The inquiries that ding your credit score are called "hard inquiries." These only occur when you are requesting new credit -- applying for a new credit card or other loan, and in most cases requesting a credit line increase.

Finally, the important thing to keep in mind with inquiries is that they only hurt your score temporarily. As they age to 6 months they have less of an effect on your score than they did when they were brand new. At 12 months, I'm pretty sure they no longer affect your score. And finally at 24 months they drop off your credit report altogether. Also, if you get some good results from the inquiries such as new accounts opened with healthy credit lines that drastically decrease your overall credit line utilization, you could easily see a positive effect on your score that more than offsets the negative effect of the inquiry.

The other thing that I wanted to mention is that new inquiries will show up on your credit report immediately. I thought I could take advantage of delays in reporting by applying for a couple things the same day, but sure enough the second application had the first application's inquiry listed right at the top of my credit report, even though I had submitted the apps less than a half hour apart from each other.

I know that's a lot of information. If you feel anything else is unclear, please feel free to ask.
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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

Bobzig
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Postby Bobzig » Mon Jul 23, 2012 11:27 pm

The inquiries will drop in 2 years. Check your report though to see what bureaus were pulled. Checking will not hurt your score. Good luck.
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MemberSince99
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Postby MemberSince99 » Tue Jul 24, 2012 6:35 am

You must be reading the MyFICO forums too much, where even a single inquiry is a greater crime against all humanity than the Third Reich.
(Though I'd honestly like to ask those folks how they got their credit without inquiries, must be some really amazing folks or they must have great connections).

Anyway, you can't get credit without inquiries, no matter what anyone tells you, with VERY few exceptions. Applying for 3 cards is not going to hurt you really even short term, and as people have said they are totally completely wiped out in 2 years and in fact most companies put very little weight on anything that's past 6 months.

And as far as your Cash + card goes I'd suggest you contact them and speak with an analyst and maybe you can recon that and get it. If you're not sure how to do that, just ask and I'm sure the helpful folks here will be happy to steer you in the right direction.

LadyinRed
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Postby LadyinRed » Tue Jul 24, 2012 10:16 am

Thank you all so much for your help. I was worried that I really screwed myself over by applying for so much credit at once. Hopefully in a few months it will go back to normal.

That being said, I got my notice in the mail yesterday denying my American Express Blue Cash Preferred request. :(

Question, though. I still want the Blue Cash and the Cash+ cards. How much time would you suggest that I wait before applying for one of these cards again? Or both?
AMEX: Blue Cash Preferred (6% on groceries, 3% gas & dept stores)
Capital One: Venture (2 points per $1, equivalent to 2%)
Chase: Freedom (rotating 5% categories), Disney Rewards (1 point per $1, Disney benefits)
US Bank: Cash+ (5% bookstores / 5% Electronic Stores)

hematino
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Postby hematino » Tue Jul 24, 2012 1:08 pm

For what reason(s) did American Express say that you were denied?

Trying to build an excellent credit score without taking inquires is like trying to have a baby without having ***. It's not going to happen!

By the way, welcome to the forum and congrats on the Freedom approval!
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American
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Postby American » Tue Jul 24, 2012 1:28 pm

LadyinRed wrote:Thank you all so much for your help. I was worried that I really screwed myself over by applying for so much credit at once. Hopefully in a few months it will go back to normal.

That being said, I got my notice in the mail yesterday denying my American Express Blue Cash Preferred request. :(

Question, though. I still want the Blue Cash and the Cash+ cards. How much time would you suggest that I wait before applying for one of these cards again? Or both?


When your credit gets more established and higher. Don't keep applying because your score will keep getting lower without any of the cards in hand.
American Express '02: Platinum, Blue Cash Preferred 6k, SPG 2k, Delta Gold 1k
Barclaycard '11: Apple Financing Card 2.5k
Citi: Diamond Rewards 1.5k
Chase: Freedom 500
Discover '12: Discover IT 1.5k

DeadSpider
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Postby DeadSpider » Tue Jul 24, 2012 9:03 pm

hematino wrote:For what reason(s) did American Express say that you were denied?

Trying to build an excellent credit score without taking inquires is like trying to have a baby without having ***. It's not going to happen!

By the way, welcome to the forum and congrats on the Freedom approval!


Use your Amex letter to get free credit report and your wrong about having baby without ***. IT WILL HAPPEN !! LOL :)
Cap! QuickSilver VISA 2005 $6500
Chase Freedom MC 2006 $5000
Amex Sky 1999 $2000
BCE 1999 $8800
NFL 2013 $1500
Discover IT 2013 $3500
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LadyinRed
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Postby LadyinRed » Wed Jul 25, 2012 12:18 pm

Thanks for the advice to call US Bank, MemberSince99! I called them and asked why I was denied and they said because of all of my recent inquiries and credit card applications. I told her that I was recently married and we were shopping around for some cards to start our lives together. (Actually not a complete lie). Anyway, the woman said she'd see what she could do and told me to call back within 24-48 to check approval status. I did and I got approved!! Can't wait for my Cash+ card :D

I'm very happy getting approved for both the Chase Freedom Card and the US Bank Cash+ Card. But I figure it can't hurt to try to call AMEX too. (Since the Blue Cash Preferred is the card I wanted the most).

hematino, American Express didn't really say why I was denied. In the letter they said that they look at a factor of things and listed a bunch of things. My credit score is in the excellent range still (thank you thank you thank you).

Does anyone have any advice for called American Express about the Blue Cash Preferred? I was thinking of saying the same thing to them as I did US Bank, but I feel like they'd be harder to convince.

Thank you all so much - you have no idea how much you've helped me.
AMEX: Blue Cash Preferred (6% on groceries, 3% gas & dept stores)
Capital One: Venture (2 points per $1, equivalent to 2%)
Chase: Freedom (rotating 5% categories), Disney Rewards (1 point per $1, Disney benefits)
US Bank: Cash+ (5% bookstores / 5% Electronic Stores)

LadyinRed
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Postby LadyinRed » Thu Jul 26, 2012 10:19 pm

Well, a call to AMEX didn't help at all. The woman was reading from a script the entire time. Ah well.

So I suppose the answer to my questions of "How many credit cards can you apply for at once?" is "2."

I do plan on trying again for the Blue Cash. How long should I wait? 6 months? A year?
AMEX: Blue Cash Preferred (6% on groceries, 3% gas & dept stores)
Capital One: Venture (2 points per $1, equivalent to 2%)
Chase: Freedom (rotating 5% categories), Disney Rewards (1 point per $1, Disney benefits)
US Bank: Cash+ (5% bookstores / 5% Electronic Stores)



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