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Citi Forward Discounts, Deals and Coupon Codes

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thelnel52 2,295 2,553 February 12, 2010 at 01:22 PM More Citi Forward Deals
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Last Edited by Schooby March 26, 2015 at 05:34 PM
BALANCE TRANSFER CARDS
Card Name Duration of 0% Fee Cap Link
Virgin America Visa Signature Card 6 months 3% $50 Link [virginamericavisa.com]
Escape by Discover Card 6 months 3% Uncapped Link [creditkarma.com]
Discover More Card 18 months 4% Uncapped Link [creditkarma.com]
Citi Forward Card 12 months 3% Uncapped Link [citicards.com]
HSBC GM Flexible Earnings Card 12 months 3% Uncapped Link [hsbcapply.com]
Barclays Coast to Coast 12 months 3% $75 Link [coastresortscard.com]
Chase Freedom MC 12 months 5% Uncapped Link
Chase Freedom Visa 12 months 5% Uncapped Link
Slate from Chase Visa 15 months 3% Uncapped Link



LOW APR CARDS
Card Name Duration of 0% APR Regular APR Link
Escape by Discover Card 6 months 10.99-15.99% variable** Link [creditkarma.com]
Miles by Discover Card 6 months 10.99-15.99% variable** Link [creditkarma.com]
Chase Freedom MC 6 months 12.99-22.99% variable** Link
Chase Freedom Visa 6 months 12.99-22.99% variable** Link
TrueEarnings Card from Costco and American Express 6 months 15.24% (prime rate + 11.99%) Link [americanexpress.com]
Citi Forward Card 7 months 12.99-19.99% variable Link [citiforward.com]
Discover Student Card 9 months 12.99-19.99% variable Link [creditkarma.com]
Discover Open Road Card 12 months 11.99-19.99% variable** Link [creditkarma.com]
Capital One Orbitz Visa Platinum 12 months (March 2012) 13.9-19.9% variable Link [capitalone.com]
Citi Platinum Select MasterCard 12 months 11.99-19.99** Link [citicards.com]
Slate from Chase 15 months 11.99-21.99% variable** Link
** APR depends on credit score


HIGH REWARDS

Card Name Rewards Link
Discover Student Card 5% CB on certain categories (rotates monthly, must manually sign up online); .25% CB on everything else, 1% when you reach $3000 Link [creditkarma.com]
Citi Forward Card Points redeemable for gift cards; 5 points/dollar for entertainment, 1 point/dollar for other purchases, 6000 points for spending $250 within first 3 months Link [citiforward.com]
AmEx Plum Card 1.5% discount for prompt payment OR 2 months with no interest Link
Discover More Card 5% CB on certain categories (rotates monthly, must manually sign up online); .25% CB on everything else, 1% when you reach $3000 Link [creditkarma.com]
AmEx Blue Card 3% cash back at supermarkets, 2% cash back at gas stations and department stores and 1% cash back on all other eligible purchases Link
Penfed Visa Platinum Cashback Rewards 5% on gas, 1% on everything else; must be Penfed member; second card on list Link [penfed.org]
Associated Bank Visa Signature Rewards Card 1% CB on everything, 1 point per dollar, 3 points per dollar on groceries, gas, drugstores Link [associatedbank.com]

Community Wiki

Last Edited by 1dash1 August 24, 2016 at 03:43 PM
We have created this wiki as a place for users to insert suggestions for new cards, or to request that cards linked in the original thread should be taken down. We will edit the first post AT LEAST every other week, probably much more frequently.

Citibank Double Cash MasterCard - 2% cash back (1% when you buy, 1% when you pay). No caps, no annual fee. Only real snag is that the DO have Foreign Transaction Fees.

NerdWallet has a decent lookup [nerdwallet.com] that lets you choose the type of card and filter by credit rating and features. Worth checking for current info, that's where I saw the above:

icardbonus.com has probably the most complete, although a bit outdated collection of credit card sign-up bonuses, grouped into personal, business, student and travel categories.

The credit card rewards calculator at creditcardtuneup.com will calculate expected annual rewards for your entered spending profile for many cards. It also calculates the best combinations of cards for your spending pattern.

CardHub offers up-to-date summaries of credit card offers:
http://www.cardhub.com/best-credit-card-deals/

Just a note, Discover 5% cash back is on rotating categories, might confuse some...
***9/05/13 Penfed sent notices to change 5% to 3% and add $25 annual fee if not combined with another qualifying penfed product****

A fairly up-to-date list of 0% no-fee cards is available at zeropercentbalance.com [zeropercentbalance.com]

The Penfed Visa Platinum Cashback Rewards card is only .25% on everything else but still is 5% on gas.

The latest version of the Discover It Card has no signup bonus****, but many pluses (review linky [dailymarkets.com]):
o You no longer only get 0.25% on 1st $3K spent as w/regular Discover. It's 1%.
o No annual fee
o And you get a different phone # w/quick access to U.S. agents.


****I just got the Discover It card, and if you know someone that has a discover card, a referral gives $50 to the both parties (referrer and referee). Referrer: After signup. Referee: After 1st purchase within 3 months.
OR: link to get a $75 Amazon Gift Card with first purchase within 3 months. Linky [discovercard.com] --moosepigeon

Chase Sapphire Reserve [link to offer] [chase.com]
- 100K points for $4,000 spend in first 3 months
- $300 travel credit
- $100 application fee credit for Global Entry or TSA Pre?
- Complimentary Priority Pass(TM) Select membership (access to airport lounges)
- $450 annual fee not waived
- Each additional user costs another $75
Reviews of 100K offer:
http://thepointsguy.com/2016/08/c...e-reserve/
http://time.com/money/4461137/cha...edit-card/

1,134 Comments

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#391
Quote from buddybd View Post :
Thanks for your advice.

I have never had a late payment and money in the bank is not an issue, got a lot of savings + it helps living in my parents' basement lol.

I at least need to extend my credit line though. I was paying a hotel bill with my card and had to braek up the balance because the bill was over 1200. That was a big inconvenience because my friend had to pay the rest cause I didn't have the full amount in my checking account, and I don't trust public computers to access my bank accounts.

I really want a Discover card though, all the rewards they have makes slick deals slicker! and its not like I'm not going to spend the money lol, I might as well get some cashback while I am spending it Big Grin
I don't have any specifics on the Discover Student card, but student cards in general are targeted at those with little/no credit, so if you have any decent kind of score and no negatives you're probably in. If you apply and get rejected it will hurt your score a bit temporarily but it's not really a big deal so why not?

To expand on what was said above, use your cards and pay them off monthly, but don't exceed 80% of the limit or pay late (and never, NEVER go over limit or be late more than 30 days - less than 30 days late means a penalty but no permanent black mark).

If you've had your present card for a while you can call and ask them to bump up the limit - there's no harm in asking and if they do then that can improve your score by making utilization ratios better.

One more word of advice - the banks have no way of verifying your stated income, and if you read the application carefully they ask you for your *household* income. You mentioned living in your parent's basement right? Smilie

Last - eff Wells Fargo(and all the big banks). Find a credit union that you qualify for and move your checking/savings account there - they will treat you better.
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Last edited by tadc April 4, 2012 at 11:10 AM
#392
I wrote this post specifically for the students among us. They need to know more about credit building than just "which CC is best".

It is not accidental that some here are confused about personal finance strategy. The public schools, by design, do not teach personal financial planning. The continued success of the power elite depends on their ability to mislead the vast majority of consumers while pulling strings in government to defeat regulation such as truth in lending.

It behooves one to learn early in life how to benefit from the loopholes and to leave as few crumbs a possible of your hard earned wealth for the banks. Financially successful people manipulate the system to their full advantage. You may be surprised that following certain ethical instincts such as paying down all of your card balances every month is counterproductive.

Independent study program:
Schools, for the most part, are places where one acquires certification and learns how to accommodate and be subservient to the power class. Fortunately the inquisitive still have access for the time being to an uncensored internet. Powerful forces are seeking to end free access; learn about hidden agendas of both major political parties and who is really behind " the message". Many consumers never learn how to maximize their position. Don't be one of them.

Distortion and masking of information are hallmarks of the system. The profits of the the CC companies (banks) are dependent on misinformed consumers. Forums such as these offer opportunities for consumers to educate themselves.

The financially successful person seeks to understand how the banking and financial systems operate. Banks make far to much profit on fees that can be avoided by knowledgeable consumers.. Dedicates a bit of time each day toward uncovering the methods of the banking elite. Don't bother discussing what you have learned with your school or team mates for they prefer to live their lives quietly distracted by the trappings of consumer culture.

Getting back to credit cards. Create a personal resource and leaning binder. Chapter one is "goals". Chapter two is credit and debt management Our system rewards those who leverage not those who save. Knowing when to leverage and when to walk from a deal is key. Relentless advertising tends to make us think that we ought to purchase things which we really do not need. Credit cards enable these unwise purchases. We need them but use them with discretion.

Inflation is a hidden tax which destroys wealth, so merely saving and being frugal is not in and of itself a prescription for success.

Focus on building your FICO:
There are many sources available on how to build high FICO scores and how to understand and improve your credit report. . Owning and wisely using several CC's is essential for building high FICO. You also need to establish other forms of credit. Buying a used car or paying for dental work on a time plan is a great way to diversify your credit and improve your score.

Which Credit Card?
Personally I have no love for Discover. If you need to dispute a charge they aren't there for you. Nevertheless I do have a Discover card. I use it to pay for essentials such as bills, food, gas, insurance,postage. I accept that there are times that I must pay a fee to a vendor for the privilege of paying with a CC. These fees are a small price to pay for access to the club of high FICO. I let Discover make a few cents here and there.

Do not be short sighted on choosing a card. Go with the bank that offers excellent service, fast access to CR's located in U.S.A. call centers. How do they handle disputes? What are the minimum payments? Purchase protection?

PULL all three major credit bureau reports quarterly. The all-in-one reports are not sufficient because your ability to dispute incorrect information is non-existent or limited. When you open a dispute with a credit bureau the first thing they want is your current report number from that particular bureau.

Credit reporting Bureaus:
Be prepared to dispute, in writing, ALL derogs, even if they have some basis in truth. By law the bureau must confirm the debt/derog within a limited number of days or remove it from your report. NEVER contact the debtor, DISPUTE. More often than not the derog will simply be removed from your report.

Once you have an excellent FICO (>750), you will be eligible for premium credit cards that offer better terms and more perks. Pay off most, but not all of your CC balances every month. You must carry a small balance every month to build a good score and to prevent the card from being cancelled. If you find that you have a card whose terms have become less than favorable, do not cancel the card, just use it very little.

Pay for essentials with your cards but do not charge discretionary non-essential items on CC. Pay cash for all of those. On line bill pay is convenient but does not offer proof of payment. Debit cards do not help you build credit. Limit their use to your discretionary spending.

AMEX is my CC of choice. Certain AMEX cards offer free extended warranty and accidental damage. Check with your auto insurer as you may not need to purchase damage waiver on a rental car or depend on the CC company for this coverage.

Consider buying a COSTCO membership to get a cash rewards, fee free AMEX card. Maintain a CC from all four: Discover, Visa, MC and AMEX. Keep every card active by making a few smal purchases on each every month. If you need to track expenditures for tax purposes then dedicate one card solely for these expenses. When the time comes to itemize your expense you'll be glad that you did.

Using Credit Cards on line:
Dedicate just one card just for on line use!
This enables you to spot fraudulent charges right away. As a general rule, never enter your complete name or true personal stats on any internet site. For instance, when checking out enter:

"W. Smi"
even if your card is registered to "William Harrington Smithsonian".

As long as the shipping address, zip code matches that which is on file with the CC company, then purchase will be approved. A few on line and phone check out systems are programmed to require "full name". In this case enter:

Wil Smi"

On Line Privacy:
For forums and social network sites read the privacy policy carefully. If you still want to join never use your actual DOB, street address, sex, ect. After joining visit the "my account page" and opt out of everything that you can.

Protect your privacy on line:
Startpage is a free search filter tool that prevents Google from logging your search information. Use private browsing and avoid invasive browsers such as Chrome.

Use your credit responsibly:
Use credit responsibly. Never close any credit card if you can avoid doing so. Your FICO score is partially made up of your debt/available credit ratio. Check quarterly with the CC to see if they intend to charge annual fees. If so then make one large necessary purchase followed by paying off 98% of the debt quickly. Surprisingly, consumers who pay balances off in full each month are penalized rather than rewarded.

Let the CC company make a few cents from monthly interest. Then call them to ask for an annual fee waiver. Chances are that they will grant it. Participating in a few SD deals now and again to purchase popular re-sale items is one way of building a good credit history without incurring long term debt.

Don't forget that to earn full "club" benefits you will also need more than just CC debt. Take out a small used car loan or take a loan for dental care. Consumers who have only one fomr of credit, such as CC's will not earn as high a credit score as those with diversified debt. Plan debt to make it work for you. Make sure that any consumer loan that you take is reported to the credit bureau.
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Last edited by timbertop April 10, 2012 at 09:47 PM
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#393
Some interesting, if potentially questionable, advice.
Quote from timbertop View Post :
PULL all three major credit bureau reports quarterly. The all-in-one reports are not sufficient because your ability to dispute incorrect information is non-existent or limited. When you open a dispute with a credit bureau the first thing they want is your current report number from that particular bureau.
You are only entitled to one free report a year unless you're denied credit based on a report. Pulling reports when you have no reason to suspect problems seems unnecessary. If you have reason to dispute something, you'd probably be entitled to a free report.

Quote from timbertop View Post :
Pay off most, but not all of your CC balances every month. You must carry a small balance every month to build a good score and to prevent the card from being cancelled.
This is bad advice. There is no reason to carry any balance... balance carried and interest earned do not appear on your credit report and do not influence your score.

Quote from timbertop View Post :
Pay for essentials with your cards but do not charge discretionary non-essential. Pay cash for all of those. On line bill pay is convenient but does not offer proof of payment. Debit cards do not help you build credit. Limit their use to your discretionary spending.
If you have the discipline to pay off your balance every month, there's no reason not to charge every possible purchase (and thereby earn more rewards and/or build credit faster). If you don't have that discipline, save the card for emergencies.

Quote from timbertop View Post :
Dedicate just one card just for on line use!
This enables you to spot fraudulent charges right away. As a general rule, never enter your complete name or true personal stats on any internet site. For instance, when checking out enter:

"W. Smi"
even if your card is registered to "William Harrington Smithsonian".

As long as the shipping address, zip code matches that which is on file with the CC company, then purchase will be approved. A few on line and phone check out systems are programmed to require "full name". In this case enter:

Wil Smi"
Any evidence or cites to back this up? The dubious advice preceding gives me reason to doubt this one as well.

Also I don't see the point of all the paranoia re: personal info. If I had been totally paranoid it wouldn't have done me a bit of good - my info has been compromised several times by circumstances totally out of my control - by my employer and a couple of financial institutions. My Amex has been 'got' 3 times now and my Citibank MC once. It's annoying having to update numbers everywhere, but it's not my money at risk - it's the bank's money. That's why they put so much effort trying to convince *you* to be careful... and that is why you should *definitely never* use your debit card online (and unlink your bank account from Paypal).
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#394
What's your rationale that paying off part of the money owed is a good idea?

I have 6 or so credit cards. The last few years, I've only used 2 cards. The other 4 have been just lying around. I was told to keep the cards as oppose to cancelling it since it helps with my credit in some way, shape, or form. Have I been misinformed?

Thanks!!
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#395
Quote from tadc View Post :
Some interesting, if potentially questionable, advice.
You are only entitled to one free report a year unless you're denied credit based on a report. Pulling reports when you have no reason to suspect problems seems unnecessary. If you have reason to dispute something, you'd probably be entitled to a free report.

reply:
For those who are just learning about the impact that their credit report can have on their lives or for most of us who would like to benefit from higher FICO scores as well as those of us who are at risk of identity theft, pulling the report annually is not adequate unless you subscribe to a credit monitoring service. Kharma is free service but it won't advise you of all potential derogs

This is bad advice. There is no reason to carry any balance... balance carried and interest earned do not appear on your credit report and do not influence your score.

reply:
When was the last time you pulled your report? Monthly CC balances are most certainly reported. Your total outstanding debt is absolutely compared monthly with your available credit. A low proportion of utilized available credit improves your score. Conversely keeping your card balances close to the limit reduces your score. This information now appears by law on credit reports.[/COLOR]

If you have the discipline to pay off your balance every month, there's no reason not to charge every possible purchase (and thereby earn more rewards and/or build credit faster). If you don't have that discipline, save the card for emergencies.

reply:
It does seem counter-intuitive that paying off balances in full every month is harmful but the CC companies view such cardholders poorly. They need to see at least some interest, if even only a few dollars to justify maintaining the account. I would agree that IF one has the discipline to pay off most of the balance monthly then yes, charge everything. Unfortunately far more people get in over their heads in credit card debt than there are those who exercise fiscal discipline.

Any evidence or cites to back this up? The dubious advice preceding gives me reason to doubt this one as well.

Also I don't see the point of all the paranoia re: personal info. If I had been totally paranoid it wouldn't have done me a bit of good - my info has been compromised several times by circumstances totally out of my control - by my employer and a couple of financial institutions. My Amex has been 'got' 3 times now and my Citibank MC once. It's annoying having to update numbers everywhere, but it's not my money at risk - it's the bank's money. That's why they put so much effort trying to convince *you* to be careful... and that is why you should *definitely never* use your debit card online (and unlink your bank account from Paypal).
Most experts agree that the majority of internet users are not nearly as cautious as they could be about protecting their identity and their privacy. You may be encouraged by assurances that you are "not responsible for fraudulent use of the card" however it is up to the CC company to determine that fraud was committed. If they do not agree then you could spend years in a battle to recover your identity and creditworthiness. The advice to check-out with an abbreviated form of your name dramatically reduces the chance of identity theft and drastically improves your position in any future claim of fraud. That should be obvious. I agree, do not use your debit card on line and be careful with Paypal. Unfortunately refusing to link your bank account to pp reduces your credibility with some sellers and may prevent your ability to participate in certain transactions.

Privacy is a separate issue. Peoples lives have been forever altered by compromises to privacy made by others or by themselves. Nothing every dies in cyberspace
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#396
Quote from micro View Post :
What's your rationale that paying off part of the money owed is a good idea?

I have 6 or so credit cards. The last few years, I've only used 2 cards. The other 4 have been just lying around. I was told to keep the cards as oppose to cancelling it since it helps with my credit in some way, shape, or form. Have I been misinformed?

Thanks!!
I was myself surprised to learn that it is better to carry a small balance than to pay off in full. Carrying over a small balance generates a small profit for the CC company. It's easy to see how generating a slight profit from small interest charges helps the bank offset account maintenance charges. The banks make money from processing fees (seller) and from you (interest). Certain banks consider those who pay off in full every month "deadbeat customers" because their profit is reduced.

When you order your credit report it will show monthly or quarterly balances for each account. The credit unions do not disclose exactly how unused cards affect your score but they do tell you if a high debt to credit ratio has lowered your score.

You were properly advised not to cancel the four CC accounts which you are not using. The available credit on those accounts is used to calculate your debt to credit ratio.

Your adviser should have told you to use each card monthly to keep the accounts active. If you do not then the CC company may close the account which will negatively impact your score. The longer that you keep the cards the older that the account is and the more valuable the account becomes toward raising your score. If you own a home or have other active credit then the CC accounts do not have as much weight on your score. For those who rent, the CC accounts are often the sole source of creditworthiness on the report. For this situation having well established CC accounts is far more important than it is for the mortgage payer.
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#397
Quote from timbertop View Post :
however it is up to the CC company to determine that fraud was committed. If they do not agree then you could spend years in a battle to recover your identity and creditworthiness. The advice to check-out with an abbreviated form of your name dramatically reduces the chance of identity theft and drastically improves your position in any future claim of fraud. That should be obvious.
Not really... it's not about "fraud" at all. If you didn't make a charge, you issue a chargeback and the burden is on the merchant to prove that you did. Obviously if they don't have any evidence this will be difficult. True that if the CC company is malicious or incompetent, they may decide incorrectly, but the law is still on your side.

I understand (obviously) that putting in false info will make it harder to get your real info, but the question is... does it work? i.e. will they refuse the charge because the info is false? If so it's kind of pointless because your charge doesn't go through. If not, it's also pointless because if you can do it, so can the bad guy.
Quote from timbertop View Post :
I was myself surprised to learn that it is better to carry a small balance than to pay off in full.
When you order your credit report it will show monthly or quarterly balances for each account.
Again, do you have anything to backup your claim that carrying a balance improves your score? Because unless this is very new you're simply wrong. You are right that the banks report monthly balance, but that isn't carried balance. If you charge $100 at the beginning of the cycle and pay it off at the end of the cycle, your reported balance will be $100. The amount of interest you pay does not enter into the calculation in any way whatsoever.

I'm not saying that it's not better to have a small reported balance than zero - it is better to have a nonzero balance. But that doesn't mean you have to carry a balance (i.e. not pay off the card at the end of the month and then owe interest).

I can say from firsthand experience that never ever paying any sort of interest or fee, paying off all cards at the end of cycle and collecting lots of rewards, cashback and points is a great way to have stellar credit.

To reiterate: carrying a balance is a waste of money.
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Last edited by tadc April 10, 2012 at 11:35 PM

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#398
Tadc, do you rent? My op was addressed to students and those needing to build credit. Your replies strongly suggest that you are not likely in this category. What may true for your situation is not true for renters. Without a mortgage the FICO is weighted almost 100% on CC issues. Credit unions operated in secrecy until fairly recently. In the last decade consumers have been afforded more protections. Yet the majority of consumers remain confused regarding how their FICO is calculated and what they can do to improve it.

Merging unrelated issues in support of your POV adds only more undertow to those here who are seeking sunnier days and better seas. One such person in this thread wanted to know what he should do regarding four un-used CC accounts. I advised him that he need to charge small amounts to keep the CC's open and prevent an avoidable hit on his FICO. Anyone involved in credit building and credit repair understands that my advice is indeed very sound. In this case the poster had only been advised not to close the four unused CC's and was unaware that the banks could close them for inactivity creating a potentially serious hit to FICO.

A consumer who has a car loan and mortgage will -not- find that their FICO is affected significantly by opening or closing CC card accounts. For the 50% who are renters, the story is much different. When you think about it, people who are building credit for the first time are relying 100% on the CC to build FICO. Unfortunately renters receive no credit for paying the taxes and mortgages of their landlords.

Regarding privacy, on line purchases, and on line accounts I know from personal experience that you can absolutely: i) open on line accounts, and , ii) order merchandise using an abbreviated form of your name.

Those who wish to plaster their identity/consumer habits all over the web need not reply to any privacy or identity theft reads. Doing so adds nothing constructive to this thread or to the discussion.


Quote from tadc View Post :
Not really... it's not about "fraud" at all. If you didn't make a charge, you issue a chargeback and the burden is on the merchant to prove that you did. Obviously if they don't have any evidence this will be difficult. True that if the CC company is malicious or incompetent, they may decide incorrectly, but the law is still on your side.

I understand (obviously) that putting in false info will make it harder to get your real info, but the question is... does it work? i.e. will they refuse the charge because the info is false? If so it's kind of pointless because your charge doesn't go through. If not, it's also pointless because if you can do it, so can the bad guy.

Again, do you have anything to backup your claim that carrying a balance improves your score? Because unless this is very new you're simply wrong. You are right that the banks report monthly balance, but that isn't carried balance. If you charge $100 at the beginning of the cycle and pay it off at the end of the cycle, your reported balance will be $100. The amount of interest you pay does not enter into the calculation in any way whatsoever.

I'm not saying that it's not better to have a small reported balance than zero - it is better to have a nonzero balance. But that doesn't mean you have to carry a balance (i.e. not pay off the card at the end of the month and then owe interest).

I can say from firsthand experience that never ever paying any sort of interest or fee, paying off all cards at the end of cycle and collecting lots of rewards, cashback and points is a great way to have stellar credit.

To reiterate: carrying a balance is a waste of money.
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Last edited by timbertop April 11, 2012 at 02:35 PM
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#399
Quote from timbertop View Post :
Tadc, do you rent? My op was addressed to students and those needing to build credit. Your replies strongly suggest that you are not likely in this category. What may true for your situation is not true for renters. Without a mortgage the FICO is weighted almost 100% on CC issues. Credit unions operated in secrecy until fairly recently. In the last decade consumers have been afforded more protections. Yet the majority of consumers remain confused regarding how their FICO is calculated and what they can do to improve it.

Merging unrelated issues in support of your POV adds only more undertow to those here who are seeking sunnier days and better seas. One such person in this thread wanted to know what he should do regarding four un-used CC accounts. I advised him that he need to charge small amounts to keep the CC's open and prevent an avoidable hit on his FICO. Anyone involved in credit building and credit repair understands that my advice is indeed very sound. In this case the poster had only been advised not to close the four unused CC's and was unaware that the banks could close them for inactivity creating a potentially serious hit to FICO.

A consumer who has a car loan and mortgage will -not- find that their FICO is affected significantly by opening or closing CC card accounts. For the 50% who are renters, the story is much different. When you think about it, people who are building credit for the first time are relying 100% on the CC to build FICO. Unfortunately renters receive no credit for paying the taxes and mortgages of their landlords.

Regarding privacy, on line purchases, and on line accounts I know from personal experience that you can absolutely: i) open on line accounts, and , ii) order merchandise using an abbreviated form of your name.

Those who wish to plaster their identity/consumer habits all over the web need not reply to any privacy or identity theft reads. Doing so adds nothing constructive to this thread or to the discussion.
Is this your way of conceding the point about carrying balances? Big Grin

Props to you for trying to help out, but I just want to make sure that the information being disseminated is *accurate*.

Re: privacy, it's interesting to note that you don't have to enter your full name to make purchases, but I'm not sure what it gains you. If you can make a purchase with that info, so can whomever might get your info.

Just to be crystal clear:
  • The "best" score results from having small but non-zero balances reported from your cards each month.
  • There is absolutely no advantage to *carrying* a balance (i.e. paying interest).
  • Don't close accounts without a good reason(annual fee for example) - especially not your oldest accounts. Perhaps contrary to common sense, closing unused accounts hurts more (usually) than just letting them sit unused.

BTW I'm not a renter anymore, but I've had stellar credit all my life, so it's not really a relevant point.
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#400
Quote from tadc View Post :


I understand (obviously) that (not submitting your full name to web site while making on line purchases) will make it harder to get your real info, but the question is... does it work? ... it's also pointless because if you can do it, so can the bad guy.

'm not saying that it's not better to have a small reported balance than zero...

I can say from firsthand experience ... paying off all cards at the end of cycle and collecting lots of rewards, cashback and points is a great way to have stellar credit.
You ask, Does it work?" :
The fact that you don't know the answer begs the question:
How are you adding constructively to the discussion of helping students establish credit (main point) and reduce identity theft (minor point)?

You arrive at false conclusion:
me:
Web retailers have notoriously weak security. Give them no more information than required to complete a transaction. Yes, you can and should, in most cases, create on line accounts with abbreviated name. You will be able to check out if your address house number matches that on file with CC company. note: If you are buying a high value item then you may have to show photo i.d. to UPS, USPS or FedEx; in this case order using the name as it appears on your i.d.


you:
The (fraudster) can also submit a similar purchase

Response:
]Purchases are only approved where the shipping address matches CC file info. More importantly, theft of ONLY your abbreviated name, address and card number reduces the chance that fraudsters can open NEW lines of credit or change your shipping address with the CC company.[/B]
Quote from tadc View Post :
Is this your way of conceding the point about carrying balances? Big Grin
  • The "best" score results from having small but non-zero balances reported from your cards each month.
  • There is absolutely no advantage to *carrying* a balance (i.e. paying interest).
  • Don't close accounts without a good reason(annual fee for example) - especially not your oldest accounts. Perhaps contrary to common sense, closing unused accounts hurts more (usually) than just letting them sit unused.

BTW I'm not a renter anymore, but I've had stellar credit all my life, so it's not really a relevant point.
??? Your list seems to contradict. You repeat points that I made from the start but advise others that this is "bad advice". Which is it?

Your past experience from long ago in a different credit market has little bearing on today's credit market especially for those currently seeking to establish new credit. Much has changed since 2008.

Today a CC company is much more likely to cancel an unused or underused card than ever before. "One size fits all" advice on credit is bad advice. Well heeled consumers would not need to, nor want to, carry balances of any size.

My post was aimed specifically at students rather than CC users in general, therefore any reply to what I said should address the concerns of students and others who do not have decades of stellar credit behind them.

One poster that I replied to had four (4) unused cards. My advise was to start using each of those cards monthly to reduce the chance of cancellation. Still, simply using the card may -not- be sufficient to prevent cancellation where the purchases are small. The policy on cancellation of "under used" accounts by CC companies varies but is trending toward eliminating less profitable accounts. Carrying a small balance does reduces the likelihood of cancellation because banks consider all of the the following for their bottom line: high charge amounts, lots of small transactions where the per transaction fees add up (paid by seller), occasional interest payments, even small ones.

Since 2008 many banks have cancelled "under-used" accounts, even from long established account holders, simply because they were deemed to be "Not profitable". Wells Fargo will be one of the first to cancel under-used accounts even if you pay on time.

My advice is to check with the CC company to find out what minimum monthly interest charge is. It could be 50 cents or ten dollars. Each CC user must determine for himself if the cost in annual fees and minimum interest is worth the cost of maintaining a card where the sole purpose is to build FICO by increasing the number and age of open credit lines.

A proper analysis of a particular student situation requires more information than "I have four unused cards". I have already said that the most effective strategy is to also have a combination of credit lines which include accounts other than credit cards such as medical/dental or a used car loan.

Before taking out small loans, solely for the purpose of building FICO, make sure that the loan will be reported to all three Credit Bureaus and that you will not miss any payments.
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#401
Quote from timbertop View Post :
Purchases are only approved where the shipping address matches CC file info. More importantly, theft of ONLY your abbreviated name, address and card number reduces the chance that fraudsters can open NEW lines of credit or change your shipping address with the CC company.[/B]
No need to be defensive. I'm merely questioning the particulars of your technique as I've never heard of it being used before and it seems to be, shall we say, creative.

I question the utility because (for most people) their name and address are in the public record, so if Robert W. Smith opens an account under Bob Smi with a valid address, it would be trivial to fill in the blanks. Not to mention that opening new lines of credit require an SSN, which should not be on file at an online retailer. And if "they" got your SSN, they most certainly got everything else...

Quote from timbertop View Post :
??? Your list seems to contradict. You repeat points that I made from the start but advise others that this is "bad advice". Which is it?
If you have questions about perceived contradictions, why not ask about them?

The "bad advice" is throwing away money on unnecessary interest payments. You explicitly stated that one must carry a balance to build a good score, and that is simply false.

It might be true that carrying a balance may save certain otherwise-unprofitable customers from having their account closed, but for the vast majority this is irrelevant. Frankly, one is better off leaving a bank (Wells Fargo in your example) which engages in such shady, short-sighted practices. There is no shortage of organizations willing to issue credit to those with any kind of decent score and no derogatory marks.
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#402
Interesting discussion here. I never thought about carrying over my balances would help my score at all. My logic was that if I pay on time, banks would increase my credit lines so that I can use their services more, which in turn will generate more revenue for them.

I agree with the unused/cancellation of card bit, my dad has been thinking about canceling one of his card, I'll ask him not to.
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#403
Quote from buddybd View Post :
Interesting discussion here. I never thought about carrying over my balances would help my score at all. My logic was that if I pay on time, banks would increase my credit lines so that I can use their services more, which in turn will generate more revenue for them.
Just to be clear (as discussed above), carrying balances does not affect your Credit Score one way or the other - it can't, because this information is not reported to the credit bureaus that calculate the score.

It may affect your relationship with the bank though (increased credit line or closed account for example), because the bank that issues you the card (obviously) has more information at its disposal than what is reported to the credit bureaus.
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#404
Anybody know of an outstanding rewards card for very high utilization? I put between $70,000-$120,000 on my Chase Ink Bold card every month, and it currently nets 1.2% back (1% plus .2% for a linked checking account). I generally use the reward points as additional personal income as they are not taxed.I believe that this is the best card for my purposes, but could definitely use any input. Thanks!
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#405
"I put between $70,000-$120,000 on my Chase Ink Bold card every month"

your monthly expenses ?! Wow!
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