Keep Excellent Credit Score Rating with Three Cards Bonus 110,000 Points and $95 Fee

Best Reward Cards

With the allowed time to meet those minimum spending requirements of my two Citi AA and Barclay Arrival cards about to end,  it is a good time for Isa to apply her new credit cards.  Her estimated credit score according to is even higher than mine. Since one year ago, I embarked on the project to improve her FICO score to the excellent category, I like to share that effort continues to be successful.

Isa's estimated credit score as of 4/28/2014

The plan was to apply 3 more credit cards, although she already has had five active ones.  With +750, we bet that her three card applications should be approved without issue.  That was indeed the case.  The entire application process took about one hour to fill out three on-line forms on a Sunday afternoon, making sure we input the correct frequent flyer numbers.

#1. Chase Sapphire Preferred Card with 40,000 (45,000) Bonus Ultimate Reward Points
  • Extra 5,000 bonus points with one authorized card user (added my Dad)
  • 2X on hotel, flight and dining
  • Annual fee waived first year
  • No foreign transaction fee (Chase offers good exchange rate) and chip-enabled (better security)
  • $3,000 minimum spending requirement in the first 3 months of opening the account

#2. Citi Hilton Visa Card with 50,000 Bonus Hilton HHonors Points
  • 6X per $1 spent on Hilton hotel stays, 3X on supermarkets/drugstores/gas stations
  • No annual fee
  • $1,000 minimum spending requirement within the first 4 months of opening the account

#3. American Express EveryDay Preferred Card with 15,000 Bonus Membership Reward Points
  • 3X per $1 spent on US supermarkets, 2X on gas stations
  • Annual fee $95 NOT waived first year (We made a mistake here, probably makes more sense to apply for the no-fee version of EveryDay).
  • $1,000 minimum spending requirement within the first 3 months of opening the account

Q. Why applied 3 credit cards?
A.  We typically apply credit cards every 4-7 months.  Four is too many.  Two seems too few.  I also will leave two credit card slots open now, so to be ready for special card bonus promotion such as the Citi AA 100,000.  Because once appling for credit cards, I would have to wait minimum 93 days before applying again.  By that time, the special credit card promotion may be gone.

Q. Why these 3 credit cards?
A. Which one to apply should be based on your upcoming needs and whether current card promotions are attractive to you.
  • Isa has about 10K Hilton HHonors points available.  With the extra 50K HH points, she would be able to redeem two Hilton hotel rooms at Santa Cruz when her parents come to visit us around Thanksgiving time later this year.  (Yea, her parents are hiking fanatics). 
  • She dines out often with her company clients, and flies for business trip once a quarter.  This Chase Sapphire Preferred card for the next 12 months can earn her some nice UR points and provide her convenience of no foreign-transaction fee.
  • 3X per $1 spent on groceries via the AMEX EveryDay Preferred card can help us to earn MR points, as we shop at Safeway often.  (Costco does not meet the grocery store criteria.)  Moreover, AMEX card generally increases FICO score.

Q. How to meet the minimum spend of $5,000 in the first 4 months?
A. Please read "7 Effective Methods".  Particularly, multiple auto and home insurances are about to be due on my parents side and our side.  I can help them pay first.

A Major Benefit of Good Credit Cards Management

The total new credit allowance which Isa is approved is almost 3X of what she was allowed three years ago.  Chase Sapphire Preferred card also requires FICO +730 to be qualified for the card.  Isa's FICO score was 700 back on October 2013.  Now the new auto loan has her name on it and on-time payments evidently have improved her FICO score and credit allowance quite significantly.  My plan is in two more years, Isa will be qualified to finance home mortgage and auto loan independently.

Are you trying to improve your spouse, significant others or kids their FICO score also?

No comments:

Post a Comment