When you’re applying for a credit card, you might be wondering how you can get approved for one faster and with no doubt of success. Although there’s no magic bullet that will guarantee your approval, there are plenty of things you can do to increase your chances.
1. Check your credit score
Before you apply for a credit card, you should check your credit reports from all three credit agencies. Everyone is entitled to a free report from these agencies once a year, and they can tell you what your current credit score is and what problems you may currently have.
You should also make sure that all three of your reports are basically consistent with each other. If there is anything that you disagree with, contact the credit agency and ask for an explanation. Often they’ll re-evaluate their reports and drop any disputed faults. Once you’ve looked at your score, you can take the next step, which is…
2. Improve your credit score
There are many ways to do this, from paying all of your bills on time to paying off the balances on other credit cards or loans that you might have, close unnecessary cards such as store cards(though don’t close older credit cards as that will reflect badly on your credit report), and if you’ve never had a credit card before, consider a secured card as a great away to start building your score up.
If you have older cards you should consider making a few small transactions on them, ensuring that they’ll show up as active cards on your report, and improving your score. This process can take months, but you’ll be glad when you’re able to apply for better cards.
3. Look for cards that best suit you
Check which cards will give you the benefits you want, whether they be airline miles, cash back programs, or lower interest. When you find one you really want, ask the card issuer what their requirements are to obtain that card.
Everything from age to income level, job history, and of course, your credit score, are all considered by credit card companies. If they ask for more than you can give, go to another card issuer and see what their pre-requisites are. In time, you’ll likely find the perfect match for your situation. If you don’t, then continue to improve your score until you meet their requirements.