Chip-enabled Wells Fargo Visa Signature Credit Card
Ah, Wells Fargo.
Though I've had some sour experiences with how they calculate their consumer account fees, their slick ATM software and user interface, a phenomenally gross oversaturation of Wells Fargo branches in my area (three on one block if you count the one in a grocery store), and the great service from my finance-savvy personal banker has kept my business account with them for years.
The sophistication and (financially) conservative approach of their risk scoring practices* made me a little apprehensive when I applied for this card, since my score was a hair below 20% percentile. I felt I was in approval range, but uncertain what limit they would give me.
But I had a strong hunch that Wells Fargo's algorithm wizards would factor in the customer's in-house history, and I hoped that my well maintained 3-year history on the business checking side would carry a good deal of weight. The bank had just started a massive promotion for this particular credit card, and so I wondered if some of the algorithm parameters might have been adjusted to be more generous, or their human reviewers a little more enthusiastic, in light of this.
The results was pretty good. My banker quickly completed the necessary procedures in the company's browser based StoreVision portal (SVP) - deftly documenting the face-to-face visit, confirming the identity verification, loading the product recommendations (SVP will even tell the banker if you've receive a direct mail offer for a card and when the offer expires!), then applying for the product. The screen at the end of the application said a decision would be given in 3-4 business days, but in reality this was much faster, the banker told me, as she clicked my name from the top of a list of prior customer visits and pulled up a different screen to show me my new $10,000 credit limit, and no interest on purchases and balance transfer for 15 months. More than enough, and just what I wanted.
Much thanks to Wells Fargo, and to the bankers and tellers at my branch. I'll now be able to replace a defective fridge at a rental unit, get a tire pressure sensor fixed and pay supplier for server equipment, expenses I could barely pay off without loading up interest-bearing cards or jeopardizing savings. How WFB expects to make money when I plan to load up the card and then responsibly pay it all off interest-free over the course of 8-12 months, I don't know. But, thanks very much for the loan, Mr. Henry Wells!
*Some of this is based on my experience in which, while Charles Schwab Bank anticipates the needs of their presumably-wealthy clientele by setting their initial ATM withdrawal limit very high ($1,000 per day if I recall), Wells Fargo Bank sets it to $300 per day, and it can only be raised by talking a banker after you have developed sufficient account history. The typical ATM limit in the U.S. is around $500 per day, some banks and credit unions start it at $350, but most will adjust it whenever you want - I've never heard it being limited by account history before. This is from 2014, so practices and amounts may have changed.