My Brawl with Citi- A Credit Card Reconsideration Story

Two months.  For two months we traded blows until I finally delivered the TKO punch on Tuesday night.

My faith did not wane, nor did my persistence slow.  I knew that I would win the fight.  You must have the same confidence when faced with a similar challenge.  When the decision pends, it is time to prepare for a fight like Bob Barker does.

Here is how it worked for us.

On July 23rd my wife applied for a Citi AAdvantage card, as well as three other cards in her recent App-O-Rama that scored her over 140,000 points and miles.  Two cards were approved immediately, as they all should have, and two were pending decisions.

I didn’t bother calling Barclaycard, because the experience that others have told me said they just need more time to make a decision.  I immediately called the Citi Credit Card Reconsideration Line, they responded by asking a few questions over the phone and told me they would get back with me.  Frustrated I hung up the phone.

A letter showed up in the mail about a week later that requested:

  • A piece of mail showing that we lived at our address.
  • Proof that we owned the phone number listed on the application
  • A letter from our CPA confirming her income

Picky, Picky, Picky.  Not to be discouraged I scrounged up their requirements and sent them off to Citi.  After giving them three or four days to approve me I called and got the answer that they had DENIED my wife.  What were they thinking?  Shae has a wonderful credit score, low debt to income, impeccable credit history, and everything else a creditor would want.  The person on the line explained that he couldn’t tell why.

Here is where a little experience is so useful.  I hung up the phone and immediately put on my boxing gloves, dialed the number for the credit department instead of calling the application line.  You’ll see both numbers on our Credit Card Reconsideration post.

I talk about fighting, but really when Andrew from South Dakota answered the phone I acted more like a gentleman.  We chatted about the weather, Sioux Falls, and other things to warm him up to the meat of our conversation.  I wanted him to be on my side, not against me thinking I’m some #$$ screaming at him.  Most of these people have some leeway whether they approve you or not, so play nice even if they aren’t being fair.

Andrew explained that even though they had received the information from me answering all of their questions, they didn’t like:

  • The credit card statement I sent was too old.
  • The letter signed by my CPA wasn’t on letterhead.
  • We had never answered the phone number on file.

Instead of asking for further information, they straight denied her the application.  Are you kidding me?  He was definitely inclined to help us get approved for the card, so I worked with him to ensure we would get the approval and go 4 for 4 on her App O Rama.

He explained that our address wasn’t verifying (whatever that means), so I gave him my work address and he was able to verify that address.  A quick phone call to our home number (a Google Voice number) with Shae answering the phone and answering a couple of other questions and we were approved.

Yahoo! 100% Great Success.  More than a brawl, it was like a tea party with an old friend.  Andrew was more than happy to get us to the approval state in spite of our small barrier. The approach to take here is confidence, persistence, and kindness.  At the end you’ll feel like it has been a fight, but really it would all be worth it in the end.

What experiences have you had with your reconsideration stories?  We would love to hear about yours!

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4 Responses to My Brawl with Citi- A Credit Card Reconsideration Story

  1. Naomi says:

    Hey,
    Congrats on reconsideration.
    I have applied to Barclay’s several times and I want to do it again. I got rejected because their reasoning being I recently applied to many other credit cards. It has been about 4 months since I applied to any credit card. Is now a good time to go for Barclay’s again? Can I go for two at once?

    Thanks

    • Sheldon says:

      @Naomi-

      Crazy that they’ve let you down a couple of times. I haven’t heard that they are such sticklers from most people.

      I’ve heard that their reconsideration team is a little less swayable (if that is a word). It sounds like it might be a good time to try again. What card are you eying?

  2. Gerardo Fernandez says:

    I was denied a CitiBusiness card because I defaulted on a Citi card in 1996 ($1200). My credit score is > 790. They told me it was their policy not to issue credit under these.circumstances. I have a Citi AA Platinum. Citi personal cards have a dfferent policy.

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