Good card to rebuild credit
Jan 16, 2003 (Updated Sep 26, 2003)
Review by sdking
Rated a Very Helpful Review
User Rating: Very Good
Web Site Experience:
Pros:Excellent website and online bill payment.
Cons:Credit limits low, high interest rates and annual fees.
The Bottom Line: I recommend Capital One to people of all credit types.
Recommend this product?
Capital One no longer allows customers to request credit line increases. Instead, accounts are now reviewed on a periodic basis, and if a credit increase is granted, you will be notified by mail. They do not say how often the account is reviewed or what criteria is used when granting increases.
After faxing over my complaint letter (and a print-out of this review) to Capital One's customer relations office, I received a call from Capital One's executive office. I was very shocked to say the least.
The executive reviewed my letter and my account and apologized for what had occurred (see below). She thanked me for bringing the matter to her attention and said that the representative will be dealt with in an appropriate manner.
The executive also removed the annual fee from both of my cards, and lowered the APR on both cards from 19.8% and 19.3% to 15.9% each. While this isn't fantastic, any reduction in interest is helpful.
While I am glad that the matter was resolved in a timely fashion, I'm disappointed that it had to get to this point. Overall, Cap One is a good company; just be careful with the reps. If they give you a hard time over an issue, you should contact Customer Relations immediately.
My original review is below. I really thought Capital One was a great company. Boy, I was so wrong. I called Cap. One's customer service line early February to have my interest rates on both my cards reduced and the annual fee waived on my MasterCard, since I was a "preferred and valued" customer.
My call was redirected to an account manager named Jack. Jack said that he couldn't make those changes at this time, but that he would put a notation on my file so that when my accounts are reviewed, they would take those concerns under consideration.
Jack then said that he "didn't want to see me go empty-handed", he offered to upgrade my secured Visa account to a gold card. He said that my card would remain secured, but that I would get additional benefits like deals on car rentals. I accepted the offer and then Jack said the card would be mailed to me shortly. He also said that I would need to re-register my card and that once I activated the new card, my old one would be invalid.
Two weeks pass and I receive nothing. I called the customer service line again and ask when I will be receiving my card. The service rep says that once the account has been upgraded, I should receive my card the first week of March.
I called customer service again on March 5 just to check up on the card. The representative researched my account and says there was no notation for an upgrade. She proceeded to put me on hold. 20 minutes later, an account manager named Pedro picks up and reviews my account. He informs me that there was no order to upgrade my account, and that they could not upgrade my card to gold status. In order for me to get a gold card, I would have to re-apply through their automated application line or on their website. He did say that if all my accounts continue to be in good standing, they will consider better benefits in the future.
I was very angry because I feel like I was lied to. If they couldn't upgrade the account, why bother to make me the offer?
I'm also upset because I feel like they're treating me like a terrible customer. I've never been late with a payment, never went over my limit and always paid more than the minimum. They won't lower my interest rates, waive my annual fees or give me better card benefits.
What's worse is that they have been reporting my balance and my credit limit incorrectly to the Big 3 credit bureaus, which is hurting my credit report than helping.
I still think it is a good card for those who are unable to get credit elsewhere, as other subprime cards charge whole lot more in interest and annual fees. However, I would recommend getting everything in writing from them and complaining when you feel they are acting in an unjust manner. I've written them a complaint letter; I'll keep you posted on what happens.
I got a secured Capital One card back in August 2001. They wanted $49.00 for security deposit and gave me $500 credit limit. I handled the card so well that eventually they gave me a $300 increase on the card and gave me an unsecured Platinum card with a $500 limit in March 2002 (although the $59 annual fee and the 19.8% interest rate was kind of a downer).
Capital One provides an excellent opportunity for people to get their credit on track. I had had many credit problems and no one would give me card. Their customer service representatives are friendly and their website's bill payment service is excellent! Payments post to your account quickly and they have e-mail notifications to let you know of activity on your account.
My only criticisms are that for starters it is extremely difficult to get credit line increases. I've paid my bills for both cards on time, paid more than the minimum and they have only raised the credit limit once on each card ($300 for the secured/$100 for the unsecured). So in total, my limits were $800 and $600. $600 for a "Platinum" card isn't that great.
The fees and the interest rates are very high. My interest rate for both cards is 19.8%, and my annual fees range from $29 - $59.
Overall, you should go to Capital One if you are just starting out or rebuilding your credit.
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