If you have trouble getting a general purpose credit card, try applying to a retailer. They are usually easier to qualify for
No, those are not the only options. Check with the bank where you have a checking or savings account. Institutions such as Wells Fargo offer secured cards. Capital One and Wells Fargo don't charge the outrageous fees that often come with secured cards.
Thanks, Jessica. You can take this question from Peggy.
I would complain to the Office of the Comptroller and the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau about the 30 days. That sounds way too long
Both--you don't want to max out one card even if you have plenty of credit on others.
Good advice, Joan. It certainly couldn't hurt to submit a complaint.
Credit utilization is the overall percentage of your credit that you are using but Jessica's right . You don't want to max out on any one card
And as Joan said before, keep your overall utilization ratio below 30% for the best score results.
I think the 30% only applies to the overall ratio
As long as you keep your overall utilization low enough, you should be fine if you want to make a large purchase on one card that bumps up your usage over 30%
Alright, we only have five minutes left. Let's try to squeeze in two more questions.
I would ask them first. You can go online or read every month in Kiplinger's Personal Finance Magazine what are some of the very lowest rate cards. That will give you an idea of what is available when you call them
I'd say it's better to just approach your company directly--it's their computation on your score and other history that'll dictate their decision, not the knowledge that someone else wants to offer you a better rate.
They want to keep you as a customer so they have an incentive to keep you happy
If you've recently gotten a preapproval letter for a card with a lower rate I wouldn't be afraid to mention it though :)
Alright, here's our last question of the day from Idk
Those rates listed in preapproval letters aren't guaranteed though. It depends on your credit history
It's going to take time to improve your score if you have accounts in collection. I would talk to a reputable credit counselor first. It will be noted on your credit report if you pay off less than the amount you owe.
Yikes. I'm not sure I want to recommend paying debt with debt, but it would get the collections report marked paid faster and you on your way to a better history/score.
Good luck in paying down your debt. The faster you get rid of it, the better off you'll be
Negatives stay on your report for seven years, so regardless of how you do it, get the collections account off as soon as you can.
Thanks, Joan and Jessica. Idk, it sounds like a credit counselor might be the way to go.
Alright. Unfortunately, that’s all the time we have for today.
Jessica's right. No one can eliminate correct information from your credit report no matter what they promise
Thank you all for the great questions, and thank you Joan and Jessica for helping us out ! Lots of good information here.
Thank you all for participating!
If it sounds too good to be true, then it probably is.
We're always happy to answer your questions
We apologize to the readers whose questions didn’t get answered -- looks like this is a popular topic, so we’ll have to invite Joan and Jessica back for another credit chat in the future!
We're always happy to help!