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Credit cards are very useful as they can be charged for getting access to different types of funds. Short-term loans and bank credit are effective for funding business or personal expenses. Smart entrepreneurs also use credit cards to fund assets through debt restructuring where the outstanding credit can be apportioned to be paid over one or two years. If you’re nervous about the application process, read on. Here’s everything you need to know about how to apply for a credit card online.
Many businesses take loans to finance operations. Loans usually cost businesses less than it costs to raise equity. Corporate credit cards are effective for funding temporary projects. They are also easy to apply and receive through online registration.
Personal credit cards can also be acquired through an online application process. If you have a good credit rating, you should be able to get one through relative ease. In this blog post, we describe the process of how to apply for a credit card through an online application.
Safety for Online Credit Card Application
The first concern for people looking to apply for an online credit card is identity and information safety. There is some risk of identity theft when trying to apply for a card online. Hackers can steal your information and use your personal information to change the mailing address for the card.
However, the risk is very small. Most reputable banks are now using online encryption technology for application submission. To ensure the connection is secure, check the bank’s address at the top in the URL bar. If it says “https” instead of “http” then that means the website is secure.
Another thing to make sure for online application is that you are the one who initiates the application process. If you get an email offering you a credit card or a pop-up message on a website that offers a credit card, then be very careful about proceeding. Senders of such unsolicited messages asking for personal information like SSN, home address, or date of birth. Do not share any such information with them.
Purpose of Credit Card
Once you have the security sorted, the first step is to identify why you are getting the card. Are you looking to get credit to manage your monthly expenses? Or perhaps you want to get a rewards credit card to get the best sales offers? Most people get a credit card to fund their business expenses.
Depending on your needs, you will need to select one of three credit card types.
- Standard Credit Card
- Rewards or Loyalty Points Card
- Corporate Credit Card
Compare Rates and Fees
Next, you should research the card charges, rates, and benefits offered by different banks, and card providers. There are five important things that you should consider here.
- Available Limit – This will depend on your income and existing credit score.
- Annual Fee– This is the annual fees charged by the card issuing company. It is usually between $20 and $50. However, some cards can be more expensive.
- Annual Percentage Rate (APR) – This is the fees and interest you would be paying on the outstanding balance. Your APR can be fixed or floating. Fixed APR is charged at the same rate regardless of national interest rates. Floating charge fluctuates with changes in national interest rates.
- Grace Period – This is the time period you are allowed to settle the balance from the date of the transaction without incurring any interest on it.
- Late Fee – This is the fees you will be charged if you settle the debt soon after the due date has passed. Most banks charge a late fee for missed payments.
Know Your Credit Score
Your credit score is your history of meeting obligations and clearing outstanding balances on time. If you consistently buy on credit and clear the accounts on time, your credit score will go up. If you fail to meet payments on time, your score will go down. Increase in income, paying off debt or mortgage also increases your credit score. Taking on new debts or additional obligatory payments decrease the score.
A good score will allow you to get a better card limit and may also affect your fixed APR to give you better rates. Do note that every time you apply for a credit card or a new loan such as a mortgage or mobile plan, it has an effect on your credit score. If your request for credit is rejected for any reason, it further deteriorates your credit score. So, make sure that your application is ready for acceptance before applying.
Decide on a Credit Card
Once you have done the appropriate research on the credit card that you want, go through the company’s terms of services and conditions. Make sure you read and understand the conditions. Getting a credit card is a big commitment and you should never rush into applying for a credit card to meet expenses. Keep your income in mind and have a plan on how you will repay the balance before the due date.
If you are not clear on the terms or need help to understand the charges better, do not hesitate to approach the company on call and ask for clarifications.
Five of our Favorite Credit Cards
See our full review of the Chase Sapphire Preferred.
See our full review of the Capital One Venture.
See our full review of the Amex Platinum.
See our full review of the Ink Business Preferred.
See our full review of the Chase Freedom.
Fill Out the Online Application Form
Once you are satisfied with the company and credit card terms, visit the application page for your chosen card company. You will be required to fill out an online form which is similar to the form you fill out when applying at the bank in person.
Important information will need to be filled out such as full name, cell phone number, home address and date of birth. You will also need to fill in your SSN, your salary income and other relevant information such as existing loans etc.
If you are applying for a corporate card on behalf of your company, you may also be asked to submit business documents and information about the company’s directors and managers.
Once you have filled out all the information, you will be required to confirm your identity through a pin code that you will receive through an automated call, text message or email. After you have entered the code, you will need to submit the application.
Approval and Credit Card Delivery
After the application has been received by your bank or the credit card company, they will take 2 to 5 business days to go over the detail and confirm the accuracy of the details that you have provided. The company may approach your employer to confirm your job status. They may also check your bank account details. You may also receive a call by a company’s representative to confirm that you have applied for the credit card.
These steps are meant to improve transparency and ensure that you have indeed applied for the credit card. For instance, once the information is confirmed, you will receive the credit card through the mail on the address you provided during application submission.
Once you have received the credit card, you will need to get it activated online or through call before it can be used. The verification process is quite easy and usually takes less than 2 to 5 minutes.