how long do you have to keep your cards to be considered "gardening"

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s.jessica
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how long do you have to keep your cards to be considered "gardening"

Postby s.jessica » Tue Feb 26, 2013 2:20 pm

How long do you need to garden your current cards to be considered "in the garden"? I had someone point out to me that I was heading for the same mistake everyone tries to make by starting with crap cards expecting to "churn" them in a short time. Cap1 one is good about this, with them if you start from the beginning, you get a secured card with a $200 limit, after 6 months they might up it to $300 then 6 months later you can app for a unsecured card, but you are likely to get put on their steps thing where you get $500 to start then later they up it to $750 and leave you there for life, high interest and a $39 annual fee. Where I'm at right now, they dangle another bone in front of you, if you app again, you might get a higher CL which is what I would like, lower interest and cash back rewards which if used carefully would offset the AF. At the same time, it's temping me to app for a card I know I'm going to have to dump as my credit improves.

My parents keep telling me I have to go back and talk with this bank loan officer who happens to be a friend of theirs so he sees all and knows all and his word is gospel, but he's soooo dang confusing. He tells me the story of the farmer who hates radishes but he plants all radishes because they are good for the soil so he can plant all sorts of good things next year. (I'm still trying to figure out how keeping crap cards is better than getting little better ones).

To make it worse, we know CK gives you a FAKE score, it should say "for entertainment purposes only." So if you watch CK which gives you a free score, you really have no clue were your scores are really. Then to top it off he starts talking about tiers, so you can file BK get something like an Open Sky card that doesn't check credit and in a year have close to a 700 score, but he said that's a 700 in tier C which would be like a 550 in tier A. What???? :confused: So in other words, your score don't mean jack.

I know he wants me to be like my parents, they have 1 credit card they've had since 1998, it just a platinum card with no rewards but a $7,000 CL and no AF. What happens? I apply for a card and get a $300 CL with $39 AF and I'm not happy with my 1 card so I have to apply for another. Now I'm not happy with either card. Ever since I was I kid, I was always taught to do what is "safe" we don't take risks because that can end badly. I've really really wanted to apply for another card, but the guy told me the risks are way too high. What if I try for a better Captial One card then get put back on the steps thing, find myself with another $500 CL and $39 AF?

I asked about taking out a secured card to bump up my CL, but he said for that to work I would have to put up at least $2,000 of my own money and I might have to wait 2 years or more to cancel that card and get my money back. In order for it to work, I would have to use the card for 6 months then keep it at least until I qualify for a better card. He said he would avoid the crappy lenders like Applied Bank because I'm past that point of them being my only hope and they would continue to hang out on my credit reports for up to 10 years after I close the account.

What his suggestion was, I should try to get another card then garden what I have for awhile. What I'm curious about is, if I end up with a secured card or something that isn't very desirable, how long would I be stuck with it if I'm in the garden? Is it really that wrong to keep churning cards at least once a year before the AF hits?


MemberSince99
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Postby MemberSince99 » Tue Feb 26, 2013 4:07 pm

It's never wrong to do what works for you provided it doesn't hurt anyone else in the process.

I'm not sure what radishes have to do with it, but I think his point was you put up with Crap I'm sorry Cap One creditors now to get the better ones later, or one creditor if you follow his advice.

Unfortunately that's the way the system works. You are simply going to have to put up with the lousy ones now to get the better ones later. I know you don't want to do that and I don't blame you, but that's just how it works. I didn't want a job starting out washing dishes either but that's what I got (and I hated it) and I'm glad I'm not there today.

There is nothing wrong with churning cards if you are improving your situation and getting better cards. Why keep a lousy 300 dollar limit card with a 39 AF that will NEVER grow with you once you've gotten prime cards? I sure can't see ANY reason, other than AAoA. Kick it to the curb and don't look back once you get better it's no loss.

I can't tell you for your situation how long it makes sense to keep that card - all I can tell you is, only as long as it takes you to get BETTER cards, however long that may be. How long is that? I have no idea. You simply have to use what you have responsibly, for 6 months to a year, then apply for better. You will get over the hump. I don't know a shortcut for you, it will take time that's how the system works.

I do realize a 300 dollar limit card is truly pathetic, filling your gas tank can give you a 200 pre-auth that only comes off 3 days later, making the card unusable for 2 weeks even if you pay if off ASAP because CAP One takes their sweet time crediting back your available 300 bucks. I realize this a ROYAL PITA and that's why I closed my starter card with them in utter frustration. You can call them once you've made the payment and ask them to post back the availlable credit now for you, but again that's a hassle, it's just how these cards are. You will be grateful when you have better.

Anyway you are doing it right. Don't just get one card - it's not the best thing for your score, it's good to have alternatives, AND if that card gets lost or stolen you'll have another to use while waiting for a new card. You are doing it right you just need to be patient. The ONLY alternative I can see is if your parents will make you an AU on their card, that might speed it up. Otherwise just be patient and keep working.

s.jessica
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Postby s.jessica » Tue Feb 26, 2013 6:03 pm

The good news is I tried the Cap1 at the pump and they only charged $1 for the authorisation. The bad news is gas is going to $3.749 per gallon and I have a 24 gallon tank to fill. I fully understand the Crap1 thing because they charge a high AF give you a low CL then expect you to apply for another card in a year to get a better CL and lower AF. The sad thing is this card isn't a keeper either.

In defence of Cap1, they will give a secured card with a $200 CL and $49 deposit to almost anyone. I've even heard of people in the lower 500's getting a card. Not sure what you would have to do to get denied their secured card and they will raise your limit once which is a much better deal than you get from anyone else. The bad news is you are stuck with the $300 for the rest of your life until you cancel the card and apply for something else, but someone has to give you the chance to build your credit back up to be able to get that better card. You can't build credit unless you have credit and you can't get credit if you never had credit......

MemberSince99
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Postby MemberSince99 » Tue Feb 26, 2013 7:15 pm

You're exactly right. Those cards are not intended to grow with you. They do the job and with less expense and hassle by far than the bottom feeder lenders (Credit One, First Premiere and other d-bag companies like that). Gas is going up like crazy, if it's this much already I hate to think of what it will be by Memorial Day. Maybe 6 bucks? Who knows.

I really think you are doing it right you just have to be more patient. I know how hard that is, as that's something I totally lack. If a lender annoys me, they are typically closed very quickly. Some I'll cut some slack, others not so much, YMMV as always. But just hang in there, don't be me, keep the Cap One use it right and in 6 months to a year you should get better cards.



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