When you apply for a credit card, you know the worst thing going through your mind, what if I am not approved? While we cannot guarantee approval, there are several simple things you can do to increase your chances of approval.   

The old saying is true, the bank is there for you when you don’t need money but is not there for you when you need it.  The trick, therefore, is to make your credit look like you do not need any money from the bank. 

Related: Can’t Get a Business Bank Loan? Here Are 3 Alternatives

How to Get Approved for a Credit Card

Here are simple steps you can take to approve your odds of being approved for a credit card:   

  1. Pay down outstanding balances before applying and make sure the new, lower balances appear on your credit report.  There is a natural tendency to keep money in your checking account for a rainy day while carrying a balance on your credit card.  Do the opposite, the bank knows how much you owe not how much you have in your checking account.  The other benefit of doing this is that the lower balances tend to increase your credit score.   
  2. If you are going transfer a balance either to consolidate or take advantage of a 0% promotional offer list it on the application.  Banks like to know that you are not keeping an existing balance plus growing a balance on their card, they also love winning business from the competition. 
  3. Do everything you can to get high limit credit cards. There are some cards where Visa requires that the issuer offer at least an $8,000 line.  These cards are marketed as Visa Infinite.  If you don’t have any higher line cards you may want to request a credit line increase before applying for these high line cards.  This demonstrates that you can handle a higher credit line card. 
  4. Diversify your credit.  Do NOT be afraid to open that retail store card.  Not only do those retail cards give you great value for signing up and great shopping offers, but they also grow your credit.  If you demonstrate you can keep balances low on multiple cards the banks will fight for you. 
  5. Apply where you bank.  The bank takes into account your deposit history.  If you have a good deposit balance, have regular deposits from your job, and/or have managed your checking account well the banks understand you manage your finances well and is more likely to approve your application. 
  6. List all of your income on your card application.  The income should be your gross before-tax income.  Also include any additional income streams you may have whether it is a pension, an annuity, rental income, or alimony.  The banks need to make sure you can pay back the card, having enough income is an important part of paying back the credit card.   
  7. Follow us on Seek, we know which banks prefer customers with low balances, high balances, few cards, many cards, etc.  

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