Credit Score Credit Limit

Hi all
Recently applied for a Citibank CC after getting an offer for points etc. Had a Citibank CC which I only cancelled last year so thought would be easy.
I dont have any debts other than mortgage, but have a lot of equity. Reasonable income and no loans etc. Have the usual ozbargainer 28 degrees card and a CC from the bank with the mortgage (both paid off monthly).
My application got rejected almost immediately. When I rang I was told that it was nothing to do with my income, assets or expenditure, but was that the credit rating company had some sort of arbitrary limit on credit and the minimum limit for this card was above what they said was my limit. I checked my credit rating which is excellent and the person I spoke to at the company had no idea what I was talking about when I mentioned this limit (though this was a Philippines call center and I was asking something not on the script). I rang the ombudsman who had not heard of this either.
Again, I note that they were happy to give me a CC 2 years ago and my financial situation is the same (if not better).
I dont care about the credit card but I want to know what this limit is and how it is calculated. I am also concerned that I now have a rejection for credit on my record which may effect any future applications.
Has anyone ever heard of this before.


  • Run by a bunch of automatons.

  • +1

    This is the reason I don't close credit cards (and ensure no annual fees on any of the cards) unless I absolutely have to.

    CCR has been nothing but negative to me despite excellent scores since CCR was introduced. Prior to CCR, refinancing / switching cards have been real easy.

    • +2

      I don't doubt your statement or experience, but I've had the opposite experience. I've churned from card to card, never had a denial and always met the criteria. I've never paid interest on a card and once the incentive of the card has been obtained, it's fully paid off and closed.

      I've checked my credit score from 2 various firms and it hasn't effected it in any negative sense. When I spoke to someone in the finance industry, while they say multiple applications can be a cause for a red flag, paying on time can actually help build or rebuild a credit score. It was explained there are many variables but you want to try to ensure you meet the requirements and stack every advantage in your favour to get the best outcome.

      He added, if I was to get a loan in the future, seeing that I have a healthy history regarding cards would be beneficial.

      EDIT: He gave a lot of great insight, every bill or payment you make is a chance to improve your credit score (or maintain it).

      • How many cards do you churn per year? I got into this about a year ago and churned 3 last year… Settled on a mortgage this month, and now currently have 2 active CC's… Credit score has gone from about 800 to 670, but that should go up once the payments start showing on the new CC's..

        • I've churned through 2~3 cards a year but always made repayments and never incurred interest.

          I was dumb enough to stay loyal to a bank for 25+ years earning little to no interest on their "savings" account and having just a standard card. My biggest regret is not learning that banks don't value loyalty earlier. I hope people can learn or benefit from my own experiences.

  • +3

    Likely the word "rating" was used incorrectly/accidentally by the call center staff.

    Sounds like the maximum credit limit they were willing to approve you for (in dollars, eg. $5000), was less than the minimum credit limit for the card (eg. $10,000).

    This is most likely because you already have two credit facilities, and in their calculations, they are only willing to approve you for a small amount (or none at all) above your current combined credit limits (eg. $5k 28 degrees + $10k Bank CC).

    They are correct in that it isn't (directly) because of your income, assets, or expenditure.
    Rather that there is a limit to how much total "credit" you will be approved for with your current income.

    • Any idea where I can find out this limit - relatively important to know if I ever apply for any other CC.
      Also any idea how this is worked out and why my limit is suddenly less than 2 years ago>?

      • +3

        Any idea where I can find out this limit - relatively important to know if I ever apply for any other CC.

        Not only will the banks never tell you this, but it will change from bank to bank, and change over time.

        You mentioned that you have "a lot of equity" & "Reasonable income".

        Your assets are more or less ignored in the application, so it doesn't matter how much equity you have.

        Your income is considered relative to your other debt & credit card limits.

        The banks will basically assume a scenario where you suddenly max out all your credit cards, including the new one that you are applying for. If that happens, then will your income be enough to meet the repayments on all your cards, and your other debt and the other expenses you've shown in the card application.

        So, if your income is "reasonable" but you have too high a limit on your other credit cards, then your application will be denied.

        Note that only the limit on your other cards is considered. So, if your other card has a limit of $10,000, then they will assume a debt of $10,000, even if you have only actually used up $1,000 out of that $10,000 limit.

        The only things you can do for future applications are:

        1) Try to reduce the limits on your other cards as much as you can, and cancel any cards that you are not using.

        2) Apply to some other banks. The card issue criteria vary between banks, and while Citi may consider you high risk, but some other bank may consider you low risk & happy to issue you a card.

        3) Don't put too high a number for "other household expenses" in your card application.

  • Oh I would bet money that your credit score has taken a hit from this. I was trying to balance transfer my card to another provider because I hated the bank. Finances were fine but the provider I chose said no, this affected my credit score. By going to four other banks to balance transfer my card, they also said no and my score just kept going down. This is despite not getting credit with any of them.

    • Just pay your debt

      • Im not sure how helpful this comment is?

        There was nothing wrong with the debt as most of us have credit card debt. I was annoyed at the bank as they didnt have Osko, PayID, Google Pay and their online banking facilities would go down regularly.

  • The metrics used for this are intentionally kept sercret.
    Too easy to game the system otherwise. People would know exactly how to lie on their application forms.

  • +4

    FYI Citibank are the king of credit card rejections, Only bank who has rejected me and to this day no idea why

  • Has anyone got experience with card upgrade with Citibank? Can you do online?

  • When you applied did you choose a credit limit for the card, or allow Citibank to select a limit? If the latter, it generally means that your application goes through with the highest possible limit and might be a reason for the rejection?

  • Years ago, co worker and I applied for citi signature free for life. I had higher income and no kids or mortgage.

    We both had mails to submit additional info to verify (payslips, etc). I did it immediately and was declined the same day.
    Co worker ignored the email and was approved 2 days later.

    I then was in a phone battle with Citibank without outing my co worker. they initially offered me a platinum card instead, but after 3 or 4 calls asking for reason for rejection, they gave me a signature card with a 13k limit (min limit was 15k at the time)

    The card has been great for me. I have used at least 10 lounge visits, saved a fortune on travel insurance and managed a couple of free flights on the points i earned (when the earn rate was much higher) , although i get hassled with phone calls that i dont want and usually ignore.