'ZDNET Recommends': What exactly does it mean?
ZDNET's recommendations are based on many hours of testing, research, and comparison shopping. We gather data from the best available sources, including vendor and retailer listings as well as other relevant and independent reviews sites. And we pore over customer reviews to find out what matters to real people who already own and use the products and services we’re assessing.
When you click through from our site to a retailer and buy a product or service, we may earn affiliate commissions. This helps support our work, but does not affect what we cover or how, and it does not affect the price you pay. Neither ZDNET nor the author are compensated for these independent reviews. Indeed, we follow strict guidelines that ensure our editorial content is never influenced by advertisers.
ZDNET's editorial team writes on behalf of you, our reader. Our goal is to deliver the most accurate information and the most knowledgeable advice possible in order to help you make smarter buying decisions on tech gear and a wide array of products and services. Our editors thoroughly review and fact-check every article to ensure that our content meets the highest standards. If we have made an error or published misleading information, we will correct or clarify the article. If you see inaccuracies in our content, please report the mistake via this form.
Sometimes an emergency will pop up that is beyond the current contents of your bank account. There is that trusty credit card, but what happens when your needs surpass your credit limit?
There are plenty of ways to increase your credit limit. All it takes is a little patience and strategy, and you can do it.
We can help you improve your credit card and increase your credit limit with our expert tips.
Before attempting to increase your credit limit, take these steps.
The first step is to check your credit. You cannot fix your credit score if you are not aware of it, so be sure to regularly check it -- especially when you plan to increase your credit limit. You can use many tools to check your credit score and even receive free notifications and updates.
Another important consideration is your credit utilization score. When you pay more than just the minimum required, you can successfully lower your debt-to-income ratio, making you a more attractive candidate for a credit limit increase. Be sure that your account details reflect your current information, including any changes to income.
Every credit card company has a different procedure for increasing your credit limit, but the details differ a bit from issuer to issuer. Most allow you to apply for a credit limit increase online via a simple form, but you may need to call a customer representative instead. The details should be available on the back of your credit card or via your account's online dashboard.
Sometimes, the best bet is to simply apply for a new credit card. With a new card comes a new line of credit that may exceed what you currently have available on your other credit cards. You also may have an easier time obtaining a credit limit increase through a new credit card issuer that may be a little more understanding than your current issuer.
Sometimes, card issuers will offer a special promotional APR that can make it an especially attractive time to increase your credit limit. However, if you have been making timely payments, it is very possible that your credit card issuer may contact you directly. When you show long-term, responsible use of your credit card, issuers are more likely to extend an offer of credit to increase the credit limit you already have.
As tempting as it may be to increase your credit line, there are some considerations to make, so you do not end up harming your credit in the process.
Just because a credit card issuer offers an extended line of credit, it is important to be sure that you can make the payments and afford the increase in fees.
If you receive that big raise at work or have a big boost in credit, you could be a very attractive candidate for a credit line increase. Accordingly, most issuers recommend waiting if you have recently lost your job, reduced your income, or experienced a dive in credit.
Unlike a preliminary check, issuers are likely to issue a hard inquiry so they can check your credit score before making a decision on your request.
Many of today's best credit cards share how to increase your credit limit for your credit card.
Credit card issuer
Credit limit details
Typically does not apply to:
Other factors that creditors may consider include:
If you are unsure of your eligibility for a credit line increase, you can always reach out to your credit card issuer directly to inquire about qualifications and the application process. They will be the best experts to guide you in increasing your credit limit.
The best way to increase your credit limit is to show responsible payment use. Credit card companies will issue a credit limit increase when they are confident in your ability to make timely payments. If you want to know how to increase your credit limit, you should focus on making payments on time, improving your credit score, and maintaining an attractive utilization score. At the end of the day, however, it is all about the issuer and its policies, so it is important to find out what qualifying factors will affect your decision for a credit limit increase.
For more information about credit, consider some of our other resources: