Alisha: This is the second time I’ve been turned down for a credit card in a month. I don’t know what I’m doing wrong.
James: Have you checked your credit report recently? Maybe you have a bad credit rating.
Alisha: I have a full-time job with a good income, which they can easily verify, and I don’t have any outstanding debt, so what could be the problem?
James: Have you had a credit card before?
James: Did you always make your payments on time?
Alisha: Well, no.
James: Then that may be your answer. Your payment history makes a big difference with the credit bureau. If you’ve missed payments or been late, that’s a big strike against you.
Alisha: You mean if I were late a few times, I wouldn’t be able to get another credit card?
James: A few times? How many times?
Alisha: Well, maybe a lot of times.
James: And why do you need another credit card if you already have one?
Alisha: Had one, past tense. The credit card company cancelled it.
James: Ah ha, I think we’ve just found the crux of the problem.