This the fourth time that I write about how to get credit cards, and I still have so much to say!... This time I focus on getting the first credit card, it's gone!
Why is it so hard to get your first credit card?
Be careful not to be confused with the debit card, which you will simply receive at the opening of a checking account in one of the banks. For the credit card, it's not the same song!
The first credit card is the hardest to get because you do not have credit score, credit history.
To have a credit card, you need a credit score. And to build up a credit score, you must have a credit card ...!
Well, no, it's not a joke.
And I react justly to this comment:
It's been 3 months since my husband and I settled down next to Philadelphia! We are facing major problems to get our credit card .. 2 requests, 2 refusals! We do not really understand why ... We asked for the "AmericanExpress" which was denied us because we have not been in the US for quite a long time! What to do ?
It will not help you to ask for a credit card from your bank or an online bank. If you do not receive credit card ads in your mailbox, you are not eligible.
I know far too many people who break their noses at the doors of banks, and who receive nice letters of refusal ....
Tricks to get it: secured or unsecured?
First, you have to wait a few weeks on arrival (I waited 3 months, it can be only 2) before asking for your first credit card. Because the organization that will issue your credit card (banks or others) will ask you for the SSN, the employment contract, and 3 pay slips (that's what I had to provide).
Then you should know that you have much more chance of getting a secured credit card, than an unsecured credit card (unsecured credit card). Let me explain.
Secured credit card
The idea as I explain in the article on How To Get A Credit Card is to consume money that the bank lends us for the month. This is the unsecured credit card system, the most common, everyone's card. But it's also the hardest to get as the first credit card for a stranger!
Then there is the secured credit card, which has the same functioning as an "unsecured credit card", except that you have to pay a security deposit at the opening Will correspond to the credit limit that the bank will grant you per month. This is a margin of safety for banks, which will more easily accept your card application.
You will start to build up your credit score, and claim a "real" credit card, an unsecured, once you reach the first eligibility threshold.
By the way, Bank of America has made the transfer of the secured to the unsecured automatically once Max has reached the threshold! He received a letter from his bank several months later to announce the change. He was able to recover his cash credit line (the amount of the security deposit) he had paid at the outset, and they also increased his credit line.
Not all banks offer a secured credit card. Here are some of them with their peculiarities:
- Secured credit card CapitalOne: The bank lends you a little money in addition to your deposit, which is interesting to increase your credit line,
- Secured credit card US BANK: The deposit you pay is remunerated,
- Secured credit card Wells Fargo: the card offers good insurance,
- Secured credit card Bank of America: The credit line will be as high as the amount of the deposit paid on departure. This is the map that Max had taken.
You can also take the option "reward" to retrieve cash back, explanations in the article on How To Get A Credit Card.
And it is not impossible to get an unsecured credit card right from the start, you just need to know how to ring at the right door
Indeed in this case you are eligible for the Global Card Transfer program which allows you to get an unsecured credit card of $ 5,000 from credit line upon arrival, so enjoy!
If you have an account with HSBC Bank
HSBC is an international bank. If you have an account with HSBC, you can request an opening of the account in the USA and you will automatically receive a credit card because they take into account your payment history of your French account.
In addition with a "first" or "gold" account, you will not have any fees on the dollar transfers between your 2 accounts.
If your spouse already has a US credit card
He (she) can add you on his credit card! Maybe it will make your credit score bigger, but I'm not sure of that. If you know, share it for comment!
If not, think Credit Union
The DCU is an online bank, just make the online request. But beware, you have to ask for the Visa Platinium quite simple, without the rewards.
That's the option I've taken. The card is free, with a limit of $ 5,000 upon arrival. Which is really good to start with!
How to get a US credit card without credit score
To apply for a card, you must first open an account with them. It can be a checking account, or a saving account. This will be done in any case, automatically when you apply (ask for) the credit card. Upon registration, you will have to pay 15$ or more to an association, the one you want. Then you will be able to co-op someone, it will not have to repay these expenses.
Or even Bank of the West if you're in California!
I learned about it recently: Bank of the West provided an unsecured credit card accessible to foreign newcomers. You should then ask for the most basic, platinum mastercard .
Once in hand, how does it work?
As soon as you receive your first credit card, you will then be filed with 0 credit score, to one of the organizations like EQUIFAX, which manage the credit history.
What is Credit score
Now it's up to you to play! All marbles to build up a reasonable credit score !
How do you know if you are eligible for a second credit card?
Get a credit card without credit score as soon as you receive credit card advertising in your mailbox, it will mean that you will finally be eligible to apply for an unsecured credit card, but not yet Any one! For more safety, refer to the advertisement addressed to you.
I was super happy when I saw my first credit card pubs arrive 6 months after I got my first. This is the first time I was happy to receive publicity!
Letters of style:
Dear Sarah, We are looking forward to seeing you soon.
Dear Sarah, Your credit history shows that you are a perfect match for offer! That's why we have pre-approved you for ...
As you build your credit history, you will receive more advantageous credit card offers: lower rates, and higher rewards.
For my part, I own 2 credit cards, while I was totally reluctant to this kind of concept at the base ...
Of course, be careful not to fall into the credit gear ...
There may be other ways to get a first card, do you know of others?