Editorial Note: The content of this article is based on the author’s opinions and recommendations alone. It has not been previewed, commissioned or otherwise endorsed by any of our network partners.
Getting a credit limit increase may be beneficial — as long as you maintain responsible spending habits. Here, we’ll tell you how to increase your limit when using a Capital One credit card.
First, it’s important to understand that each credit card company has different requirements for limit increases. Before sharing the criteria Capital One uses to grant or deny a limit increase request, let’s discuss why you might want a credit limit increase in the first place.
Why increase your Capital One credit limit?
Capital One offers flexible credit cards for personal or business use that provide several benefits and perks, from bonus rewards and Uber ride discounts to cashback and 0% intro APR promotions. While the perks of using a Capital One credit card are nice, if you are spending near or close to your limit each month, your credit may be taking a negative hit. It’s important to ensure you’re using credit cards for convenience and to improve your credit, not because you need them in order to get by.
Keeping your utilization below 30% of your credit limit each month is ideal for credit-building. Plus, if you are spending less than 30% of your credit limit, it will be easier to pay off the balance in full in month, allowing you to avoid paying high interest rates. Even if your card currently has a 0% APR for a limited time, it’s best to get into the habit of paying off your balance in full each month, because that promotion won’t last forever.
With that being said, a credit limit increase may help improve your credit score, as long as you don’t inflate your spending. If you keep your spending at the exact same level after the credit limit increase, your utilization will automatically drop.
For example, say you spend $300 a month on a card with a $1,000 limit – a 30% utilization rate. You requested an increase and now have a $2,000 limit, but continue to spend just $300 a month. Without doing anything differently, you’ve lowered your utilization to 15%, which could help improve your credit score.
What to know when considering a Capital One credit line increase
Capital One allows users to request a credit line increase either online or by phone. Accounts not eligible for a credit line increase include those that are less than three months old, as well as those that have received a credit line increase or decrease within the past six months.
When you submit a credit line increase request, Capital One looks at a variety of factors, such as on-time payment history, average monthly payment amount and your credit score. A credit score of 700 and above is generally considered good.
Capital One will also look at your current utilization rate. If you are responsibly using your card and paying more than the minimum each month, this tells Capital One that you can handle potential increased monthly payments if they offer you a credit increase.
What’s nice about this process is that it will not negatively affect your credit. When you submit a request to increase your credit limit, Capital One will use the information they normally receive from the credit bureaus each month, so your credit report will not be pulled.
How to request a Credit Limit increase with Capital One
Requesting a credit limit increase is easy, and it only takes a few minutes. Here’s how to do it online.
Once you’ve logged in, click on ‘I Want To…”.
Under Offers and Updates, click on Request Credit Line Increase.
Fill out the short form to the best of your ability, then click Submit Request.
In some cases, Capital One says they can approve credit limit increase requests immediately. If they do not, you will be taken to a confirmation page. As stated on the confirmation page, Capital One will notify you with the outcome of your request in two to three business days if you are signed up for a paperless account, or within 10 business days if you receive paper statements.
If you prefer to request a credit line increase by phone, you can call 1-800-955-7070 and choose the ‘More Options’ prompt to get to the credit line increase request option.
If you’re denied a credit limit increase, Capital One allows you to apply again at any time, but there’s no guarantee your request will be approved. It’s best to work on addressing the reason or reasons why you were declined in the first place.
In addition to making payments on time, and making more than the minimum payment each month, Capital One recommends you keep your income and employment information up to date, as these factors are crucial for determining if you’re eligible for a credit limit increase. They will also help you to build a strong credit score overall.
If you’re approved, your new credit line will be available immediately. Try to stick to responsible spending habits, and continue using your card wisely.