Why did my credit card application get rejected despite good income?

Ask Miles: Why did my credit card application get rejected despite good income?

My credit score is good and I earn a good income, bu why did my credit card application get rejected?


Having good credit is no guarantee that you’ll get approved for a credit card. Before you panic, we’ll breakdown a few reasons why an application can be rejected despite holding a good or excellent credit score.

You might not realise it but credit scores aren’t the only things providers review when assessing if your application should be granted. The following factors play a key part in the decision-making process, so it’s good to be wary of them.

Your income isn’t high enough

Even if you earn good money, it might not be high enough for the credit card you’re applying for. Always check the eligibility criteria. 

You have too many credit cards

Many providers consider the number of credit cards you hold before issuing another one. Even though you may be able to handle the financial responsibility of another credit card, providers often don't want to take the risk. Before applying, pay off your balance, close cards you no longer use or consolidate your debt using a balance transfer card.

You have too much debt

Despite a good income and credit rating, if you carry a lot of debt on your credit cards it will look like you’re less proactive at paying off your balance. You need to show a consistent repayment history. It’s also worth noting whether you hold debt in other forms ie. a loan, phone contract, car lease, etc. Consolidating your debt can be a good place to start, but make sure to pay it off and minimise the different types of debt you hold.

Your income isn’t stable

If you’re self-employed, own a business or have a casual job then you’ll be assessed differently from someone that has a permanent, full-time job. Incomes that are stable, permanent and consistent (ie. a full-time job) are less risky in the eyes of providers. But don’t worry, you can still be approved if you’re self-employed.

You’ve applied for too many credit cards recently

Multiple credit enquiries in a short space of time will reflect badly on your financial management. It signals to providers that you may be in financial difficulty or would like to take on too much credit. Either way, you’re viewed as too risky. You may need to wait a few months before applying again as all enquiries will show up on your credit report.

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The products, banks and companies mentioned in this Ask Miles question and answer were correct at the time of publishing. The information published is general advice only and should not be taken as specific personal finance advice.