More spending power can be beneficial for your credit — and your budget. With Citi, requesting a bigger credit limit only takes a few minutes.
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A higher credit limit can be beneficial for your financial health in a few ways. It can positively impact your credit, provide you with more spending power and allow you to earn more rewards.
Requesting a higher credit line with Citi is simple — all you have to do is contact the issuer. However, there are some things you need to keep in mind, like the possible consequences, before you request an increase.
Read on to find everything you should know about requesting a credit limit increase with Citi.
Like many issuers, Citi doesn’t provide specific eligibility requirements, but there are some guidelines you can follow no matter who you’re banking with.
Always pay your bills on time. If you’re often late on your credit card payments, the issuer might see it as a sign that you have difficulty handling debt.
Pay more than the minimum due. This can demonstrate that you don’t take on more debt than you can afford.
Have the account open for at least six months. The longer you’ve had your Citi credit card open, the more time you’ve had to demonstrate your creditworthiness.
It’s also a good idea to wait at least six months before requesting more credit again if you’ve already done it. Asking for a higher credit limit too often may signal to the issuer that you’re under financial stress.
Before you request a credit limit increase
Requesting a credit limit increase may only take minutes, but before you contact Citi, make sure you have all the information you’ll need.
First, determine how much of an increase you’re going to ask for. It’s possible that the issuer can double your credit line, but it’s probably not the best approach to request such a significant boost to your spending power. Citi might see it as a desperate move, so instead, you might want to try to start with a 10 percent to 20 percent increase.
Another question your issuer will likely ask you is why you’re requesting more credit. That’s something you should also ask yourself: Do you want a higher credit limit because you’re building your credit? Are you looking to finance a big purchase? Has your income changed, allowing you to spend more?
It’s important not to get a higher credit limit just to accumulate debt you can’t afford to pay.
Finally, consider checking your credit report before asking for a limit increase. Citi will likely look at your credit report before making a decision, so it’s best to know what the issuer will see. Having negative items on there may result in your request being denied.
Pros and cons of a higher credit limit
If you’re not sure if it’s a good time for you to request more credit, here are some advantages and disadvantages of a credit limit increase for you to consider.
- If you keep your spending low, a higher credit line can lower your credit utilization ratio — and help your credit score.
- You’ll have more spending power to fund large purchases and pay them off over time, or even better, all at once if it’s within your budget.
- You’ll be able to earn more rewards if you spend more on the card.
- Depending on the issuer, you may be subjected to a hard pull during their approval process, which will lower your score.
- A higher credit limit might lead to overspending if you’re not mindful about it.
Process for requesting a credit limit increase
Once you know where you stand credit-wise and are prepared to make your case, it’s time to contact the issuer.
There are several ways you can get a credit limit increase with Citi:
Automatic credit limit increases
It’s possible that Citi will increase your credit line automatically. The bank regularly reviews accounts, and if you’ve demonstrated responsible use of the card, you may score a bigger credit line without having to contact the issuer.
Periodic account reviews usually start after the account has been open for at least six months.
Requesting a higher credit limit online
Probably the easiest way to request a higher credit line with Citi is to do it online. Start by logging in to your online account and follow these steps:
- Click “services” and find “credit card services.”
- Under the Card Management menu, click “request a credit limit increase.”
- If you have multiple accounts with Citi, choose the one for which you’d like to get a higher limit.
- Enter the required information and click “continue.”
- After this, you’ll be prompted to confirm the information you’ve entered. If everything looks correct, submit the request by clicking “continue.”
Calling customer service
You can also call the number on the back of your card to ask for a bigger credit line. While it may seem less convenient than simply requesting online, talking to a Citi representative gives you an opportunity to argue your case.
Prepare all the required information and know what you’re going to say. When you’re speaking to the representative, mention why a higher credit limit would make sense in your situation. Maybe your income has increased, or you’re planning on transferring a balance to the card in question. If you’ve been with Citi for a while and have paid your bills responsibly, bring that up to show you’re a reliable borrower.
What to do if your request is denied
Even though it’s easy to request a credit limit increase with Citi, there’s no guarantee your request will be approved.
If it isn’t, don’t worry — just make sure to ask the customer service representative why it’s been denied and what you can do to improve your chances in the future.
Here’s some advice to help you score a higher credit line next time:
- Work on building your credit. A good payment history and a long credit history are always the main indicators of your creditworthiness.
- Pay down credit card debt on all of your accounts.
- Make sure to use the card regularly. Citi might not find it reasonable to bump up the credit limit on a card you don’t use frequently.
- Keep your income information current. This can help you demonstrate positive changes in your financial situation when your income increases.
- Ask for more credit during a different time of year. According to a TransUnion study, credit limit increases are more commonly granted between January and May.
- Consider applying for another card with the same bank if you need access to more credit.
Should you increase your credit limit
When it comes to your financials, there’s quite a lot of factors to consider before you make your final decision. Since higher credit limits can tempt some cardholders into overspending, and inadvertently open the doors to credit card debt, you should seriously think about why you want a credit limit and be honest about your current financial situation.
If you want a higher credit limit to somehow dig yourself out of your current debt situation, we advise against it. Unless you’ve done the math and know that increasing your credit limit on a card then transferring your balance to said card will save you serious money on interest (check out our balance transfer calculator to know for sure), it’s better to tackle your debt head-on by making regular, on-time payments.
However, there are scenarios when a credit limit increase is a great idea. Have you recently been promoted at work or got a new job, with a pay raise? In that case, you have more money to spend and need a bigger credit line to match. As long as you continue to pay off your bills in full, a credit increase shouldn’t hurt your credit score.
Another reason is that you’re still building credit, but a higher credit limit would help bring down your credit utilization ratio. Since your credit utilization is a big part of your credit score (30 percent according to the FICO scoring model), increasing your credit line will bring down your ratio if your monthly spending stays consistent.
Requesting a higher credit line can be an excellent strategy if you’re working to improve your credit or looking to fund a large purchase.
If you’re a Citi cardholder, more credit can be one call or online form away. Just have all the required information prepared and make sure a limit increase makes sense in your situation.