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A Bank of America credit line increase allows you to use your credit more effectively without hurting your credit utilization ratio. If it’s been some time since you received your Bank of America card, you use your credit responsibly and you have good creditworthiness, you might qualify for a higher limit.
Bank of America’s automatic credit limit increases involve soft credit pulls and have no bearing on your credit score. However, if you request a higher limit, Bank of America might carry out a hard pull. If it rejects your request, you may ask again after taking steps to rectify the issue/s that resulted in the denial. Applying for a new card is also an option.
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Using your Bank of America credit card responsibly increases the likelihood of an automatic credit limit increase.
If you don’t receive a higher credit line automatically, you may request one online or over the phone.
Factors that Bank of America considers include your payment history, your credit score and your income.
How to Increase Your Credit Limit With Bank of America
Bank of America allows you to request a credit line increase through its website and over the phone. Whether your request requires a hard or a soft credit pull depends on the specifics of your case. If you’re worried about the effect a hard pull might have on your credit score, you might want to ask a Bank of America representative how it plans to check your credit before proceeding with the request. If Bank of America rejects your request, you can ask again or apply for a different card.
Request Online by Signing in to Your Account
If you wish to submit an online credit limit increase request, you need to log in to Bank of America’s internet banking platform. Once you select the card in question, you might see a “Request a credit line increase” link under Card Details. This is the case if your account qualifies for an online credit limit increase request. If you submit your request online, prepare to provide details about your residence, income and housing payments.
Bank of America typically tells cardholders which way their credit limit increase requests go almost immediately. However, it may take 7 to 10 days to find out if your request has been approved or denied.
Am I Eligible for a Credit Limit Increase?
Bank of America does not provide any written guidelines surrounding what might improve the odds of a credit limit increase request’s approval. However, following a few simple measures increases the likelihood of success.
- Ask for an increase at least six months after receiving your card.
- Space out your requests for credit limit increases by at least six months.
- Pay your balances in full and on time.
Even if you don't need an increase in your credit limit, it may make sense to apply for one. The larger limit will lower your credit utilization and is available in case you have an emergency. Your chances of getting approved typically are better when you don't actually need to increase your credit limit. — Lee Huffman, credit card expert at BaldThoughts.com
Call Bank of America Customer Service
Bank of America cardholders can call its customer service department to request a credit line increase. You may also use this method if you don’t see the link to submit your request online. As with online requests, be prepared to provide information about your employment, income and mortgage/rent payments. You may call the number on the back of your card or the bank’s credit card customer care number at 1-800-732-9194.
Making the Call
When you speak with a Bank of America customer service representative, it’s important to highlight why you deserve a higher credit limit instead of suggesting that you need an increase. If you’ve been a long-standing Bank of America customer who’s been prudent when using credit, you might benefit by highlighting this aspect. Other things you might want to bring to attention include a recent promotion, a hike in pay and/or an excellent credit score.
Bank of America Automatic Credit Limit Increase
Bank of America might offer a credit card limit increase without asking based on factors such as your spending patterns, payment history and creditworthiness. For example, if your account has been open for over six months and if you’ve been paying off your balances in full each month, Bank of America might grant you an automatic credit limit increase. However, there is no guarantee of receiving an automatic increase irrespective of how good your credit score is and how well you use your Bank of America card.
Update any increase in income online and use the card in question more often while maintaining a low credit utilization ratio. Bank of America might look at these factors favorably when considering your account for an automatic credit limit increase, especially if it views you as a consumer whose spending may earn it more money.
What Are the Benefits of Having a Higher Credit Limit?
Once you get a Bank of America credit line increase, you might benefit through increased spending capacity and a higher credit score. However, the benefits will come your way only if you’re prudent in handling the additionally available credit.
Higher purchasing power
An increase in your card's credit limit gives you more freedom to use your credit card while still maintaining a low credit utilization ratio.
Improved credit score
A higher credit limit on one credit card increases your overall credit limit. If you don't add any more debt, you may expect your credit utilization ratio to decrease. When this happens, your credit score generally improves.
When Should I Request a Credit Limit Increase?
Bank of America does not provide any written guidelines about the minimum time period you need to wait after receiving your card to ask for a credit limit increase. However, since most card issuers accept credit limit requests after the first six months, you may consider waiting for at least this long. If you’ve received a Bank of America credit limit increase in the past, it’s ideal that you wait for six months before asking for another one.
Receiving a hike in pay or a promotion might be a good time to request a credit limit increase. This might also be the case if your credit score has improved considerably since the time you applied for the card. Bear in mind that some credit limit increase requests might result in decreased credit limits.
Factors That Determine Credit Limit Increases/Decreases
- You use your available credit judiciously.
- You make timely payments.
- Your credit score has improved.
- Your income has increased.
- You asked for a higher limit.
- You don’t use the card frequently.
- You missed making a payment or more.
- You have a high amount of existing debt.
- There’s an error in your credit report.
- Someone has stolen your identity.
It’s crucial to remember that a credit line increase might have a detrimental effect on your finances if you use your card indiscriminately and accumulate debt that you have trouble repaying in a timely manner. If you carry balances from one billing cycle to the next, prepare to pay a tidy sum as interest.
Reminders Before Requesting a Credit Limit Increase
Not every credit limit increase request submitted to Bank of America is approved. However, paying attention to a few aspects before asking for a higher limit might improve your odds. These factors also help you determine if you should move forward with your request in the first place.
How Much of a Credit Increase Should I Get?
Bank of America does not adhere to a fixed range when it comes to providing credit limit increases. However, requesting it to increase your card’s limit by no more than 25% of its existing limit is the ideal way to go. For example, if your card’s existing limit is $10,000, you may ask Bank of America to increase it by up to $2,500.
What Is My Current Credit Score?
Whether or not Bank of America runs a soft or hard credit pull after you submit a credit limit increase request, it will look at your credit score. So, it’s best that you take a look at your score before making the request. Bank of America lets you view your FICO score for free by using its website or app.
People with very good and exceptional FICO scores of over 740 have high chances of approval. Those with good scores of 670 or higher might qualify as well. However, if you have fair or poor credit, consider improving your credit score before asking Bank of America for a higher credit limit.
What Is Credit Utilization?
Credit utilization refers to how much credit you use from the total credit made available to you through different forms of revolving credit. However, Bank of America might also look at your card-specific credit utilization ratio when you request a credit limit increase. If this number is below the 30% mark, you are more likely to get approved for an increase.
Let’s say your Bank of America card comes with a credit limit of $5,000, and your current outstanding balance is $2,500. That puts your credit utilization ratio at 50%. You should ideally bring down the amount you owe to below $1,500 to improve the odds of your request’s approval. The lower it goes, the better the chances of success.
What to Do if the Request Is Denied
Bank of America may choose to reject your credit limit increase request for different reasons. If you ask for an increase over the phone, you may find out the reason immediately. If you apply online, you may expect to receive a letter by mail that notifies you of the reason. Bank of America might deny your request because:
- You have average or poor credit.
- The card in question is relatively new.
- You use the card sparingly.
- Your account shows late/returned payments.
- You maintain a high outstanding balance on your card.
If Bank of America denies your request, consider asking again after six months. But you'll want to do so only if you manage to fix the problem/s that resulted in the original denial. Applying for a new credit card might also be an option.
Apply for a New Bank of America Credit Card
If you do not find success with your credit limit increase request, you may consider applying for a new Bank of America credit card. However, you need to meet the bank’s rules that govern applications for new credit. Bank of America follows a simple 2/3/4 rule when it comes to approving applications for new cards. According to this rule, you may get a maximum of two new cards in a two-month period, three new cards in a 12-month period and no more than four new cards in a 24-month period.
If you get a new Bank of America card, it will add to your combined credit limit. By not incurring more debt or repaying it in a timely manner, you may expect to see an improvement in your credit utilization ratio and, thereby, your credit score. If this happens, it may well override the slightly negative effect that comes with applying for a new card and the resultant hard credit pull.
If you plan to get a new card to add to your overall credit limit, you might benefit by looking at other factors too. For instance, Bank of America gives you the option to choose from cards that suit distinct purposes through its travel cards, cash back cards, balance transfer cards and low-interest cards.
Approximate Max Credit Limit
BankAmericard Credit Card
Customized Cash Rewards Credit Card
Travel Rewards Card
Premium Rewards Card
Bank of America lets you check if you prequalify for any of its cards online. All you need to do is provide your first and last name, date of birth and last four digits of your Social Security number (SSN). While getting prequalified does not guarantee approval of your application, it gives you an indication of which way the pendulum might swing.
Prequalifying for a Bank of America card involves a soft credit inquiry and does not affect your credit score. However, you may expect a hard inquiry when you decide to move forward with your application. While a hard inquiry would cause your credit score to drop by a few points, you may fix the decrease through responsible use of credit within a few months.
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About Rajiv Baniwal
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