The offers you see on CardMatch are personalized to your credit profile. But what do you do when you’re not seeing the offers you were hoping for?
When you’re shopping for a new credit card, CardMatch may help you find elevated or special card offers. For instance, we recently came across some outstanding introductory bonuses on a few American Express cards, including a 150,000-point welcome offer (after spending $6,000 in the first six months) on The Platinum Card® from American Express we found on July 15, 2021.
However, it’s important to remember that CardMatch personalizes offers for each user. While one user may get access to excellent bonuses on popular cards, another might find no special offers available.
So, what do you do if you find yourself in the latter camp?
Read on to learn how CardMatch works and what you can do to improve your chances of getting preapproved for more attractive offers.
Why you might not get preapproved offers on CardMatch
When you try CardMatch, you may see a few kinds of offers: credit cards matched to your credit profile, targeted introductory bonus offers and prequalified and preapproved offers that carry solid approval odds.
CardMatch bases these offers on your credit profile by performing a soft pull. Soft pulls don’t affect your credit score, but they allow issuers to tailor card offers to you and give you get a better sense of which offers you’re likely to get approved for.
For that reason, if your credit still needs some work, you might get a limited number of offers when you check CardMatch. While this can be upsetting, don’t fret – take the following steps and try CardMatch again.
How to improve your chances on CardMatch
To get better offers on CardMatch, work toward improving your credit.
Here’s what you can do.
Stay on top of your payments
If you’ve missed one or a few payments, make it a priority to pay off the debt. The longer you let a delinquency linger, the more it weighs your credit scores down.
Your payment history is the most crucial factor in your credit score. Late and missed payments stay on your credit report for seven years, so this type of credit mishap should be avoided at all costs. Otherwise, it might take your credit a while to recover.
Pay down any credit card debt
A quick way to give your credit a boost is to decrease your credit utilization ratio (how much credit card debt you carry compared to your cards’ limits). A good guideline says that if the ratio is higher than 30%, your credit score might take a hit. For the best results, keep it in the single digits – or better yet, try not to carry any balance at all. This way, you’ll avoid paying interest, maximize rewards and do your credit score a favor.
Stick to your credit cards
Considering a new credit card doesn’t mean it’s time to get rid of an old one. Canceling a credit card can increase your overall credit utilization ratio, which isn’t good news for your credit score. If you’re not happy with your credit card, consider a product change – upgrading or downgrading to a different card with the same issuer. This way, you can keep the account open, maintain your credit line and get a card that better fits your needs.
Avoid applying for credit too often
Every time you apply for credit, a hard inquiry appears on your credit report, knocking a few points off your credit score. While this credit score drop isn’t likely to be significant, lenders tend to be cautious about extending credit to consumers who’ve been actively taking on new debt. Such behavior might be seen as a desperate move to access funds in a difficult financial situation.
Time your credit applications to have at least six months between them – or better, a year.
Check your credit report for inaccuracies
Credit report errors aren’t that uncommon. In a Federal Trade Commission study conducted in 2013, 1 in 4 people identified credit report errors that could hurt their scores.
Of course, not all inaccuracies affect credit scores. For instance, if it’s something like a misspelled address, you probably have nothing to worry about.
However, credit report errors may include false information, such as accounts that are incorrectly reported as late or delinquent, wrong payment dates or delinquencies or even accounts that belong to another person with the same name as you. In this case, it’s essential to dispute the errors, as they may hurt your credit. Checking your credit report also helps you keep an eye out for red flags of potential identity fraud.
Look into credit-building tools
Working on your credit is a task that requires patience – and sometimes, extra tools. To demonstrate that you’re a responsible borrower, look into credit-building products, such as a credit-builder loan or a credit-building card.
You can also report bills like rent and utilities to credit bureaus. For example, Experian Boost allows you to include your positive history of paying utility and phone bills in your Experian credit report, which can positively affect your FICO score.
See related: Guide to the Chime Credit Builder Card
Check CardMatch regularly
Staying on top of your credit comes with rewards – and a better chance at scoring elevated introductory bonuses on CardMatch.
While you’re working on your credit, make sure to check CardMatch regularly. It won’t hurt your credit score, and you may get personalized offers every time. You never know when you might come across an exciting new offer, whether because it’s newly added or you now meet the credit requirements.