The issuing company usually checks your credit report as part of the approval process when you apply for a credit card. Unfortunately, inquiries on your credit report can harm your credit score. If you are concerned that you may not qualify for the card you are considering applying for, you may not think it is worth the risk of a negative item on your report just to get turned down. AMEX prequalify allows you to find out which credit card offers you qualify for without impacting your credit score.
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The Difference Between Prequalified and Preapproved
Many credit card companies use the terms prequalified and preapproved interchangeably, but they are not quite the same thing. The consumer usually requests prequalification. A preapproved offer is usually unsolicited.
Prescreened Offers of Credit
Many credit card companies work with credit bureaus to obtain lists of potential customers who match whatever criteria the credit card company is looking for. The companies may also send offers for new or additional products to existing customers.
The Amex Prequalify Approval Process
Both preapproved and AMEX prequalify offers have a high probability of being approved, but neither is a guarantee of credit. You still need to submit an application and go through the approval process.
A prequalified or preapproved credit card application can still ultimately be denied. This is because credit card companies consider additional factors when deciding whether to approve an actual application. In addition to your credit history, they may consider your income, employment, rent or mortgage payments, debt-to-income ratio, and the number of inquiries on your report.
If Amex Prequalify gives you an approval what happens next?
A credit card that adheres to the terms of the offer will be issued. An offer may include a range of interest rates and other terms that depend upon your credit.
Impact on Your Credit Score
Prequalifications and preapprovals do not impact your credit score. This is because they involve what is known as a “soft inquiry.” Soft inquiries do not affect your credit score in the same way that hard inquiries do. Once you apply, the credit card company usually does a hard inquiry on your credit report, which can lower your credit score by about five points. However, this is a temporary effect that usually comes off your credit report quickly. Be wary of applying for too much credit too close together. Many lenders look negatively upon applicants who have been applying for a lot of credit in a short amount of time.
AMEX Prequalify Process
The AMEX prequalify process begins with a short form that takes as little as 30 seconds to complete. You need to provide your full name, home address, and the last four digits of your Social Security number. You may optionally include your total annual income or non-taxable annual income.
Your income should include all income that you have access to, such as wages, retirement income, investments, and rental properties. You can include alimony, child support or separate maintenance but these are not required. If you have non-taxable income, such as Social Security, child support, public assistance, disability, workers compensation etc you may include that in the non-taxable income box.
Once you have completed the AMEX prequalify form, click the “View My Card Offers” button. The system should then take about 30 seconds to process an display a list of offers. If you are interested in any of the offers, you then complete the application process for that card. The application process can also be done online. Most applicants will get an immediate decision on their application.
The offers you see depend upon your credit profile. Personalized offers that may include perks, such as a higher welcome bonus or lower APR are available to some applicants.
The AMEX prequalify process is a good way to assess what type of offers you’re eligible for without impacting your score. This can help you shop around for credit card offers and find the offers that most appeals to you before you start submitting any applications. Be sure to stop by MoneyMash.com for the latest information and reviews on prequalifications and other credit card topics.