Getting Your Credit Limit Raised

By Philip Brewer. Last updated 18 July 2011. 3 comments
Photo: Philip Brewer

You know the old joke about how it's easy to get a bank loan as long as you don't need one? Well, the same logic applies to getting your credit limit raised. In fact, it's almost automatic.

Want a higher credit limit on some particular credit card? It's easy:

  1. Charge enough on the card that your balance approaches half the credit limit.
  2. When the bill comes, pay the card off in full.
  3. Repeat for three or four months.

That's all it takes. You probably won't even have to ask for an increase.

The reason is that savvy customers know that issues such as credit holds make it problematic to approach even half of your credit limit, so they won't charge more than that. Since credit card companies make money on every charge, they've programmed their computers to look for this case: Customers whose charges approach half their credit limit, but go no higher. If your spending patterns make you look like one of those customers, they will quickly raise your limit, in the hope that you'll go right on charging up to half of your new, higher limit.

Of course, as I warned right at the start, this is no help at all if the reason that you want a higher limit is because you've charged your card up to the limit. But if you're keeping your cards paid off but want a higher limit for some practical reason, that's how to fix it.

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Guest's picture

I mean this respectfully... what evidence do you have to prove that this is accurate? If it is true, great post!

Guest's picture

I do this all the time.... it is not something my credit card company does. One must ask for the credit limit increase before it is given. From what I hear, most banks will give the increase if it is asked for, assuming the customer is good at getting the bill paid on time.

Guest's picture

myself and two of my friends applied for and received credit cards around the same time. i paid my bill off in full the first month, half the second month, and half the third month. i don't know what my friends did, but after 4 months our credit limits had all been raised without us asking. i think if you pay on time and make a good deal more than the minimum payments, your card company will increase your limit after about 4 or 5 months.