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Q: I’m interested in applying for the Citi Platinum Select MasterCard. What type of credit score will I need?
A: Credit card companies are notorious for being reticent to share exactly what credit score you need to qualify for their cards. But for a high-quality standard card such as the Citi Platinum Select MasterCard, you can assume that you’ll need a score of 720 or higher or on the FICO credit-scoring scale. There’s a reason for this: Consumers with strong credit scores have a history of paying their bills on time. The financial institutions passing out credit cards want to make sure that their clients, too, will pay their bills on time.
If your score is too low to qualify for the Citi Platinum Select MasterCard, don’t fret. You can rebuild your credit. Apply for other cards that require lower scores. And once you have them, make sure to pay your bills on time each month. Also refrain from running up huge amounts of credit card debt. If you have existing credit card debt, pay off as much of it as possible.
The key to earning a good credit score, and being able to qualify for cards such as the Citi Platinum Select MasterCard, is to pay your bills on time and cut down on your monthly consumer debt. Do this, and your score will gradually rise into the 700 range. Just don’t expect miracles: It takes a long time — months or longer — to boost ailing credit scores.