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Hello everyone!

So it's been a very, very busy 2 months since we arrived! I learned to drive, we got an apartment and I've got a lovely job as Executive Director of a non-profit.

I have one question that I'm sure has come up for others so I'm hoping for some advice - how do you build credit? I have a checking, savings and joint account with my husband - our car and apartment lease are in my husband's name because they had to be owing to the fact I hadn't received my SSN by the time we needed them. I've applied for two different cards about a month apart but not been approved.

I don't need the credit so I could happily have a $100 limit or something to start with, I just need to get a start on it because we want to buy our own house next year - the only reason we can't now is because I don't have credit!

Any suggestions?

Thanks so much!


I-130 petition mailed (DCF) - Feb 6, 2015

NOA1 received - Feb 10, 2015

RFE received - Mar 13, 2015

RFE reply sent - Mar 14, 2015

NOA2 received - Mar 20, 2015

LND Number received - April 8, 2015

Booked medical - April 9, 2015

Packet 3 returned - April 11, 2015

Medical - April 20, 2015

Packet 4 received - April 29, 2015

Interview - May 29, 2015: APPROVED!

POE Dallas Fort Worth - June 10, 2015

Moved from Lake Texoma to Austin, TX - June 29, 2015

Got TX Drivers License - July 9, 2015

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See if you have a credit union, or other credit card company that does a secured-credit card. You pay $500 (example) refundable for secured credit. Then make regular small purchases and make sure you pay the card off each month.

Your credit score will then start improving. Two years into the process above, and I got a car finance package approved, as credit score was excellent.

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did you try to apply for a secured credit card? Try to get a smaill car loand (can be with a joined signer) All in all it's the chicken and the egg. You need credit to get credit. Don't apply for to many credit cards at once it can lower your score you have. Every credit check is a hard hit and can lower your score. If your husband has a credit card try to get added on that one.

What i did was get a small car loan when i got a job and after a couple months a got the first credit card offers. I applied about 6 months working and paying my car loan and got approved.

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I was on the same situation. My husband and I applied for a joint credit card from our bank. We were approved. The other thing you can do is to be added as an authorized user of your husband's credit card. Then you will be able to build credit.

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Capital One secured credit card, $ 49 pay in and get $400 credit. Charge small amounts and pay on time and watch non secured CC offers

come in. Keep the utilization rate around 30% to keep decent credit.

creditkarma.com is a good tool to keep an eye on your credit score.


Spoiler

 

I-129F Sent : 3-31-2014, NOA2: 4-6-2014

NVC Received : some dinkelsberry yehoo in the house of clingons send our petition to the wrong consulate.

Consulate Received : July 30,2014 Transfer to right embassy complete.

Interview Date : Oct 22, 2014

Interview Result : AP , requesting another PC (not expired) and certified divorce decree (was submitted)Stokes interview via phone for petitioner 4 hrs after interview.

Oct 23 email notification visa approved.
Visa Received : Nov. 3 , 2014 VISA IN HAND.

US Entry : Nov. 21, 2014

Marriage : Dec 27, 2014

AOS send : May 12, 2015, received May 14, 2015 USPS priority

Email &text : May 18, 2015, check cashed May 19,2015, return receipt May 21, 2015 stamped USCIS Lockbox, NOA1 (3x) May 22,2015

Biometrics : June 1, 2015 letter received for appointment June 8, 2015, successful walk-in June 1, 2015

RFE : June 12, 2015 for income not meeting guideline. Income does ( ! ) exceed guideline.

RFE response : June 26, 2015 returned with a boat load full of financial evidence.

UPDATE: July 5, 2015 updated on all 3 cases, RFE received June 30, 2015.

Service request : Aug 12, 2015, letter received that it will be processed within 90 days from receipt of RFE.

UPDATE: Aug 24, 2015, EAD card being produced/ordered. ( 102 days from AOS receipt day and 55 days from RFE response received.) Thank you Jesus !

Emails : Aug 24, 2015, EAD approved, EAD card ordered.

I-797 EAD/AP approval notice received : Aug 27, 2015

EAD/AP combo card mailed : Aug 27, 2015, EAD/AP combo card received: Aug 31, 2015

Renewal application send for EAD/AP : May 31,2016 (AOS pending over 1 year). Received June 2, 2016,Notice date June7, 2016, emails,texts, NOA1 hard copy

Service request for pending AOS April 21, 2016, case not assigned yet.
Service request for pending AOS June 14, 2016, tier 2 said performing background checks.
Expedite request for EAD/AP Aug 3, 2016, Aug10 notification >request was received, assigned, completed. RFE letter requesting evidence for expedite, docs faxed Aug18

*Service request for I-485 Aug 3, 2016, Aug11 notification> request was assigned. Service request Dec 2, 2016.
AOS Interview letter received Aug 12, 2016

AOS Interview September 21, 2016.

Second Biometrics appointment letters received for EAD and AOS on Aug 15, 2016 for Aug 17 ( 2 day notice).

Second Biometrics completed Aug 17, 2016

Third Biometrics appointment letter received Aug 19, 2016 for Sept. 1, 2016. WTH ?!

EAD/AP (renewal) approval Aug 22, 2016, NOA2 received Aug 25, 2016

Renewal EAD in production notification text and online, expedite successful 4 days after RFE request response was faxed, Aug25mailed,Aug29received.

Sept. 21 Interview, 2 hour interview, we were separated and asked about 50 questions each for an hour each. IO was firm but professional, some smiles.
Several service requests made, contacted Senator and Ombudsman. Background checks still pending.
July 21, 2017 HOME VISIT.  Went well. Topic thread in AOS forum.
Waiting to skip ROC and get 10 yr GC due to over 2 year while pending AOS
AOS APPROVED Oct. 4, 2017 * Green card in hand Oct 13, 2017 !!!!!

First K1 denied after 16 month of AP. Refiled. We are a couple since 2009. Not a sprint but a matter of endurance.

 

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There is a pinned topic on this in the Tax and Finance forum.

I added my husband as an authorize user on my major cards. He built a credit report that way. They reported to his name as well as mine.

If your visa was CR1 then get added to the lease and car now that you have a SSN. You will want 2015 dated things for removing conditions in two years. IR1, then not needed.


England.gifENGLAND ---

K-1 Timeline 4 months, 19 days 03-10-08 VSC to 7-29-08 Interview London

10-05-08 Married

AOS Timeline 5 months, 14 days 10-9-08 to 3-23-09 No interview

Removing Conditions Timeline 5 months, 20 days12-27-10 to 06-10-11 No interview

Citizenship Timeline 3 months, 26 days 12-31-11 Dallas to 4-26-12 Interview Houston

05-16-12 Oath ceremony

The journey from Fiancé to US citizenship:

4 years, 2 months, 6 days

243 pages of forms/documents submitted

No RFEs

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very good and useful information here guys. I was searching more information on how to build up credit, this is definitely useful for me. Thanks for the info above posters!


Removal of Conditions I-751

29 December 2017 - ROC Filing Opening Date (Expiry 29 Mar 2018)

29 December 2017 - I-751 Priority Mail shipped to VSC

2 January 2018 - Package delivered

8 January 2018 - Check cashed in

11 January 2018 - NOA received (DATE of NOA: 3 JAN 2018)

22 January 2018 - Biometrics Appointment letter received

30 January 2018 - Biometrics Appointment

11 August 2018 - 18 Months extension received (Exp on Sept 2019)

 

Help us all by updating your Timeline and Profile!:D

1. Click on your blue nickname on top right corner, there will be a dropdown menu> My Timeline > Edit/Add My Entry.

2. Click on your blue nickname at top right corner, dropdown menu > Account Settings > Profile > Edit Profile (Black button) > change your Filed for and Location.

3. If you would like to update your signature, click on your blue nickname on top right corner, dropdown menu> Account Settings > Left menu click on Signature.

IMPT: If you change address, DO NOT FORGET TO fill up AR-11 Online,for your USC Spouse, fill up I-865! 

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I built my credit score up to 780 in 12 months from nothing. Thankfully I've had a UK American Express card since 2012. I used their international change of address service to get an American American Express card. The switching service transfers your original 'member since' date (in my case 2012) which helped build my score. A few months later I applied for a store visa credit card and was approved with a $1000 limit. About 8 months in I applied for a credit card with my bank (Chase) reserved for people with a higher credit score. I was expecting to be denied but I was approved.

I pay all bills in full on the day the bill is generated. The pre-approved credit card offers I receive through the mail now are neverending.

Edited by Derwood

Spoiler

 

K1

15 November 2013: Sent I-129F Package 

21 November 2013: NOA1 

20 December 2013: NOA2

23 January 2014: Medical (London)

11 April 2014: Interview - Approved!

29 April 2014: POE Chicago

20 June 2014: Married in DC

AOS

7 July 2014: Mailed AOSEAD & AP forms via USPS

10 July 2014:USPS shows package delivered to lockbox

14 July 2014: NOA1 Text & E-Mails (x3) received at 23:52hrs (Received Date: 07/11/2014)

14 July 2014: Cheque cashed & I-485 transferred to Nebraska Service Centre

18 July 2014: NOA1 hardcopy received (x3)

22 July 2014: Biometrics Letter rec'd (Appointment 07/31/2014)

23 July 2014: Early Biometrics walk-in at Cincinnati office successful!

05 September 2014: EAD & AP approved! (texts rec'd 16:45hrs)

11 September 2014: EAD/AP card mailed

12 September 2014: EAD/AP card in hand (delivered 9:54am)

18 October 2014: Potential interview waiver letter rec'd (Dated: 10/15/2014)

19 May 2015: I-485 approved! (No interview) Welcome letter mailed!

23 May 2015: I-797 (NOA2) Welcome notice received

27 May 2015: Green card received

 

ROC

ROC filing window opens 18 February 2017

16 February 2017: ROC packet mailed to CSC

18 February 2017: USPS Tracking - Ready for collection from PO Box

21 February 2017: Delivered at 11:28am. Signed for By: J.Siplivy

23 February 2017: Cheque cashed

25 February 2017: NOA1 received dated 02/21/2017

03 March 2017: Received biometrics appointment letter dated 25th February 2017. Appointment on 16 March 2017.

16 March 2017: Biometrics completed

08 March 2018: Case (allegedly) transferred to the National Benefits Center (presumably for a combo interview)

N-400

18 February 2018: N-400 Application submitted online

21 February 2018: NOA1 Rreceived

23 February 2018: Biometrics appointment letter received. Appointment 13 March 2018. 

27 April 2018: Interview notice received. Interview Date: June 5, 2018. Request to reschedule sent as out of the country at that time.

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Thats great for you Derwood! :) unfortunately I dont have any credit cards as I am used to paying bills by debit or atm system :(

Hopefully I will be able to build up mine in 12months or so.

Very useful information guys! Thanks alot!


Removal of Conditions I-751

29 December 2017 - ROC Filing Opening Date (Expiry 29 Mar 2018)

29 December 2017 - I-751 Priority Mail shipped to VSC

2 January 2018 - Package delivered

8 January 2018 - Check cashed in

11 January 2018 - NOA received (DATE of NOA: 3 JAN 2018)

22 January 2018 - Biometrics Appointment letter received

30 January 2018 - Biometrics Appointment

11 August 2018 - 18 Months extension received (Exp on Sept 2019)

 

Help us all by updating your Timeline and Profile!:D

1. Click on your blue nickname on top right corner, there will be a dropdown menu> My Timeline > Edit/Add My Entry.

2. Click on your blue nickname at top right corner, dropdown menu > Account Settings > Profile > Edit Profile (Black button) > change your Filed for and Location.

3. If you would like to update your signature, click on your blue nickname on top right corner, dropdown menu> Account Settings > Left menu click on Signature.

IMPT: If you change address, DO NOT FORGET TO fill up AR-11 Online,for your USC Spouse, fill up I-865! 

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hi,

We had the same problem when I just came in the USA. My husband added me on his credit card account. And I began getting offers from credit card companies.

Good Luck

Did you have a SSN when he added you as an additional cardholder? I've added my husband to all of my credit cards as an authorized user in hopes of building his credit, but he does not have a SSN so I don't know how the credit bureaus will be able to track it. Amex took his passport number instead of a SSN and Citi and Chase didn't care or ask for a SSN.

Just curious as to how we can build my nonresident alien (F-1) husband's credit before we adjust his status, get green card, SSN, etc.


I wrote a full detailed account of our AOS process, timeline, AP use, and interview on my blog. You can read it here.

Read our experience clearing immigration with an expired green card and extension letter here.

F-1 AOS Journey

Spoiler

10/05/15 - Mailed AOS Package (I-130, I-485, I-864, I-693, I-131, I-765, G-325As, G-1145)

10/07/15 - AOS Package delivered to Chicago Lockbox

10/14/15 - Received four NOA1s via e-mail & text notifications that USCIS received our case. Routed to National Benefits Center for processing

10/15/15 - Checks cashed

10/19/15 - Received four hard copies of NOA1s in the mail

10/23/15 - Received biometrics appointment in the mail. Scheduled for 11/03

10/26/15 - Failed early walk-in attempt for biometrics at Boston location

11/03/15 - Biometrics appointment in Boston

11/10/15 - AOS case status changed to "Ready to be scheduled for interview"

12/21/15 - EAD/AP approved

12/24/15 - EAD/AP mailed

12/30/15 - EAD/AP delivered

03/17/16 - Interview scheduled for April 20th

04/20/16 - AOS Inteview - Boston, MA - APPROVED!

04/25/16 - Approval notice received in the mail

04/26/16 - Green card mailed

04/29/16 - Green card delivered

 

ROC

Spoiler

02/20/18 - Mailed I-751 Package

02/23/18 - I-751 delivered to CSC

02/28/18 - Check cashed

03/02/18 - NOA1 received in the mail

05/12/18 - Notice that previous biometrics will be reused

08/24/18 - Received 18 month extension letter

 

Seizetheglobe.com

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