Getting a credit card requires time and due diligence, you need to how to request a credit card properly. We use our cards to shop for groceries, pay for gas, pay our bills, pay for food, etc. It, therefore, goes without saying that if you do not have one, it might be time.
When applying for a credit card, you should know that the credit card companies usually issue cards to people they think will pay them back. Your credit history, including your credit report and credit score, will be used to evaluate your creditworthiness. This is the likelihood of you paying back.
A good credit history tells the company that you are responsible when it comes to paying back what you have borrowed and doing it on time. A poor history raises flags for them that you are not to be trusted. As a rule of thumb, the better your credit is, the more likely you will get the card you want.
What to Do Before You Request a Credit Card
Compare Various Credit Card Companies
Before applying, make sure you shop around. There are plenty of credit card companies and they all have many benefits to offer for using their cards. You can check out credit card comparison sites like CreditCards.com as well as credit review sites. Off the bat, here is what you should be looking for.
Many different reward systems come with credit cards. Some companies offer cashback for using their cards. This means that when you purchase products using the card, they give you some money back.
Other companies offer loyalty points that can be redeemed for a whole lot of goodies such as paying for holidays, plane tickets and more.
Check to see what rewards the specific card has to offer you before you apply, as they are likely to save you some money in the end.
The interest rate on a card is also tied to your credit score, and the higher the score, the lower the interest. Also, the bigger the credit line, so, take time to evaluate your credit score even before applying for the card.
Compare the interest rates for each of the companies. What you want is not just low rates, but flexibility on repaying the card. Also, don’t just go for cards that are offering a 0% introductory offer, but rather look at how long the offer will last, and what the interest rate will revert to after the offer.
Once you have a good idea of what you want, and what is on offer, choose the right card, and proceed to apply either in person or through their online application process.
What to Expect During the Application Process
You will be required to provide them with some information about yourself, as follows.
- Your name
- Date of birth
- Social security number
- Physical address
- Mother’s maiden name
- Phone number
This is used by the company to verify your identity and ensure that you are suited to use a credit card.
You will also be required to provide information about your income. This includes your gross annual income, and this helps the company tell where your income is coming from, and whether or not you have the ability to pay them back.
Housing Status and Costs
The application form will also require some more information about your housing status, wither you own your home or you are renting. You may also be required to state how much you pay your mortgage each month, and how long you have been living in your current house.
Authorizing Other Users
If you wish to add another user to your credit card account, you can do so during the application process. Adding an authorized user will require you to include their names, date of birth and address.
Once you are done filling in all the areas, you can then submit the application. If you are doing it online, you are likely to receive a reply in a few minutes, but if you are mailing your application, you may have to wait a few weeks before you can receive a response.
Please note that each new credit card applications require a “Hard” inquiry of your credit report. This kind of inquiry affects your credit report and score, therefore, ensure not to do too many applications at the same time.
If you do not get approved for your credit card the company will notify you as to why. And just remember there are many options for credit cards. If you are fixing your credit you might need a prepaid credit card. Just remember you don’t need a lot of credit cards, you just need the right one for you.
Note: There are risks involved when applying for and using credit. Consult the bank’s terms and conditions page for more information.