A credit card application may not always go your way. You fill it out with the expectation of receiving a new card, only to get the terrible rejection.
In these cases, calling the card issuer’s reconsideration line is your best bet. Credit card issuers will often reconsider your declined application if your phone and request it.
I’ve had a few successful reconsideration calls, so I know what works and what doesn’t. Your chances of success increase dramatically if you know what to say. However, there are several mistakes that nearly assure you will not get the card. Here’s what you should say to increase your chances.
1. Begin the call with a kind hello.
Consider the following scenario: “Hello, (name of representative). I’m calling to inquire about a credit card application I submitted recently. How’s everything going for you today?”
Never underestimate the importance of politeness. The agent is more likely to want to assist you when you are. It’s also the morally correct thing to do.
Please make sure you start with a warm welcome since it will set the tone for the remainder of the conversation.
2. Explain why you’d be an excellent cardholder.
“I have fantastic credit, therefore I’m shocked my application was declined,” for example.
A credit card company’s ideal cardholder is someone who uses their card on a regular basis, pays on time, and avoids accumulating debt they can’t pay off.
Give a few reasons why you’re the sort of cardholder you are. Here are some of the most compelling arguments you can make in your favor (provided they’re true):
You have an excellent credit rating.
Your payment record is flawless.
Your credit card bill is always paid in full.
Your credit card balances are kept low.
3. Request a re-evaluation.
Consider the following scenario: “I’d love to get my hands on this card. Could you please take another look at my application and see if you can approve it?”
You explain why you’re calling and how the agent can possibly help you at this moment.
When you ask for a reconsideration, I believe it’s a good idea to state how much you want the credit card. Keep in mind that credit card issuers want consumers who will use their cards often and keep them open for a long time. You’ll seem more like the perfect cardholder if you sound enthusiastic about receiving the card.
4. Highlight one or two advantages that appeal to you (except the sign-up bonus)
“Bonus cashback on groceries would be fantastic for me,” for example, “since I’ve been spending a lot of money on groceries recently.”
Explaining why you want the card is one of the most critical components of the discussion. The agent will almost certainly ask you a question, and your response will determine whether you succeed or fail.
Prepare to mention one or two benefits and why you like them. This may be additional points in a major cost area, a balance transfer offer to help you pay off credit card debt, free checked baggage with a frequent flyer, or nearly any other benefit offered by the card.
The one exception is that you should not, under any circumstances, discuss the sign-up incentive. Credit card issuers dislike it when customers take advantage of sign-up benefits and then abandon their accounts since it costs them money. Even if that isn’t your objective, merely mentioning the incentive might raise red flags.
5. Address the rationale for the rejection.
“I realize my application was declined since I have a few recent credit accounts, but I have always paid them on time and in full,” says the applicant.
The credit card provider refused your application for a reason or potentially many ones. Although you will get a letter with this information in the mail, you may also obtain the rejection reasons by calling.
When dealing with rejection grounds, there are usually two options: provide a solution or provide a counterpoint in your favor.
Assume you already have other credit cards with the card issuer, and it refuses to grant you any further credit. You might request that your credit limits on those other cards be lowered so that you can utilize the credit you just gave up to get the new card. The card issuer could accept you for a new card with a $5,000 credit line if you decrease your credit limits by $5,000.
You can’t address every denial reason, and if you can’t, your only alternative is to refute it. You can’t modify the number of credit cards you have open, but you can look at how effectively you’ve handled them all.
Even if your reconsideration call does not go in that same sequence, those five things to say will cover the most important points. You’ll have a far greater chance of having your application accepted if you reach those criteria.