otter wrote:welcome to the forum!
If your goal is to buy a house, you might be able to convince lenders that the bad history is far behind you. They usually look at everything about your credit, not just your score. The problem is that most of your cards seem to be from issuers which are stingy with credit line increases. I can see you've tried to increase your credit by picking up a few cards every year or so, but the cards you've got aren't really cards you want to grow with... Capitol One is notorious for being stingy with CLI's. If a six year old AMEX card only has a $500 limit, they probably aren't going to give you much of an increase-if any. As for First Premier,.. I don't know why you even got that card when you could have probably qualified for others. I would apply for a few cards which accept fair credit, but are from issuers which will allow you increase your available credit. Barclaycard has a few cards for fair credit and they are fairly generous with credit limits. GE Cards are known for increasing their limits with regularity.
Good luck in your rebuilding efforts.
Thanks, I really appreciate the info. I actually was just able to upgrade the Cap1 from Platinum to Quicksilver, and after I did that I applied for an increase, got declined, contacted the EO, and they went ahead and approved me for a $2000 CL (up from $750). Hooray!
On the Amex, the Optima is considered a "recovery product" so they won't give a CL increase, upgrade it, or make any changes to it. I called them last week to see if there were any offers I had in the system and they said I was "pre-approved" for a Blue Cash Everyday card (which is an awesome card). I did the app over the phone, just checked online and it says it was declined. I'm trying to see if it's going to give me the typical "cannot complete application due to active and open recovery product" or if it was actually a decisioned application.
The 1st Premier account I got because I received the pre-approval in the mail and figured something unsecured was better than nothing to give me a bump on available credit. I'm not sure what others I could've been approved for; haven't tried Barclaycard recently, but I know a couple years ago I was declined.
I just sent out 9 GW letters and 1 PFD and I'm going to see if I get any luck from those. Even if I get a 20% success rate on those plus the CL increase from Cap 1 that should give me a little boost. I need to do something about the rest of those cards though! Contemplating closing the $300 Cap 1 and the 1st Premier once my score comes up a bit, but don't want to shoot myself in the foot either.
I see you got a lot of your cards recently and they all have decent limits. Your scores are awesome, I'm hoping to get there in the near future
I'd get a killer rate on my mortgage if I could. Right now I'm only qualifying for FHA which would cost me an arm & a leg in PMI plus sellers are scared out of their mind of FHA financing falling through so don't consider the offers as competitively as conventional.
Any other tips from anyone would help and be greatly appreciated!