How to Qualify For a Credit Card in Australia

Whether you’re new to credit or looking to rebuild or re-establish it, applying for a credit card is a critical step. At first, you’ll have limited options when it comes to applying for a credit card. This advice will shorten the time it takes for you to find, select, qualify for, and obtain the correct card.

As you apply for cards, your credit score gets dinged. That means you’re better off applying for fewer cards, and figuring out which ones you likely qualify for before you spend the time on those pesky forms and taking the short-term inquiry ding.

Determine Your Eligibility

Despite popular belief, earning a low wage does not disqualify you for credit card eligibility in Australia. You can make as little as $10,000 and still qualify for a card. It’s all a matter of applying for a card that suits your needs.

To apply for a credit card, you should be:

  • -18 years of age or older
  • -Not in a state of bankruptcy
  • -A citizen of Australia or permanent legal resident
  • -With a fair or higher credit rating
  • -Bringing home enough money to reasonably pay the maximum limit on the card you’re considering.
  • -This varies based on the type of card you choose, as well as the nature and requirements of the issuing bank. It also helps to have some solid assets to prove your financial security to the bank. For example:
  • -Owning a home or car
  • -Making consistent mortgage or auto loan payments, on time, every month
  • -Relative surplus of income after vital expenses like rent or groceries

Select a Card to Apply For

There’s plenty of information out there about credit cards. Know your credit score and research opportunities in line with your credit range. If your credit isn’t the best, prepare to start with a secured credit card—you’ll need a small deposit which goes towards what you spend.

Read all the terms carefully; deferred interest can be tempting, but some of those cards also come with a very high yearly fee. Know your limits, as it may help to build your credit in other ways and come back to apply for a specific card later.

Understanding The Cost Of A Credit Card

When applying for a credit card, many take on more credit than needed. This can lead to a slippery slope of debt, especially if the card is not paid off in full each month. Check out card calculator which outlines how much interest a person will pay if only making minimum repayments. Don’t become a victim of credit card debt – be informed.

Gather Necessary Documents For Credit Card Application

Photo identification: a driver’s license or passport will suffice—or a primary ID and a second ID, both with no photo. The secondary ID could be a utility bill.

Income proof: Completed taxes and/or payslips will help. Are you a freelancer? Make sure to include a record of your income, even if it’s supplemental to a full-time job. It helps!

Statement to prove debt: Only necessary in the event of a balance transfer.

Most of the time, you can do credit applications online and get an instant decision. However, it’s good to know this info as you evaluate and apply for cards. If you apply for a joint account with someone else, make sure they have this information available, too, and that they meet the requirements.

Remember: You should only apply for cards you are sure you meet the eligibility requirements for. You always get a (small) black mark on your credit for a credit inquiry.