Want to get a credit card when you're on a pension or retired? Compare your options and learn how to apply here.
You can apply for most credit cards when you're on a pension or retired. But you may be required to meet some extra conditions and provide additional documents before a credit card company will approve your application.
This makes it important to do your research before applying for a credit card as a pensioner or retiree. You can use this guide to learn about the Australian credit card providers that accept retired and pensioner applicants, as well as the documents you’ll need to improve your chances of approval.
Retired applicants: You’ll need to provide your financial details (annual income excluding superannuation, total superannuation balance, accountant details to confirm income).
Pensioner applicants: Your annual income (excluding superannuation) and total superannuation balance are required. An external source (such as your accountant) is also required to confirm your financial details.
Retired applicants: Self-funded retirees are eligible to apply. Those on a government or age pension are also eligible. You’ll need to provide proof of your income such as your superannuation statement or Centrelink statement.
Pensioner applicants: The following pensions are accepted:
Other pension (contact Bank of Melbourne to clarify whether your specific pension is covered)
You’ll need evidence of your income such as your Centrelink statements.
Retirees and pensioners: You’ll need to provide any of the following options: annual superannuation statement, which includes an indexed pension amount, your most recent pension statement, 3 months of personal bank statements showing regular credit or cash deposits, your most recent self-managed superannuation tax returns less than 15 months old.
Retirees and pensioners: You need to provide your income, how regularly you’re paid and what type of income you receive. Examples they provide include shares, superannuation, family tax benefit and Defence Reserve payments.
Retirees and pensioners: You may need to provide: A letter from Centrelink showing your name and the permanent government pension amount, your three most recent bank statements showing proof of regular payments, your annual superannuation statement, which includes an indexed pension amount, or your most recent self-managed superannuation tax return (must be less than 15 months old).
Retired applicants: Eligibility will depend on your income. If you’re a self-funded retiree with a superannuation income, you’ll need to provide a recent superannuation statement. If you have a term deposit, you’ll need to provide your term deposit statement. If you have an investment property, you can submit the three most recent rental income statements.
Pensioner applicants: Eligibility depends the source of your pension. If it’s from Centrelink, you’ll need to provide a pension statement. If it’s from the Department of Veteran Affairs, you’ll need to provide statements from there.
Retired applicants: Self-funded retirees need to provide a recent superannuation statement. If you have a term deposit, you’ll need to provide your term deposit statement. If you have an investment property, provide rental income statements for 3 months.
Pensioner applicants: Eligibility depends on the source of your pension. If it’s from Centrelink, you’ll need to provide a pension statement. If it’s from the Department of Veteran Affairs, you’ll need to provide statements from there.
Retired applicants: Accountant’s contact details are required.
Documentation: Existing NAB customers who have their pension going into the account regularly may not require supporting documentation. New NAB customers may be asked to provide their most recent pension benefit statement.
Retired applicants: If you’re a self-funded retiree, you’ll either need to provide information of your assets or a recent superannuation statement.
Pensioner applicants: St.George will require you to provide your most recent pension statement. Please note that St.George doesn’t accept all pensions as an eligible income. For example, carer’s pensions aren’t an accepted form of income, but an age pension is. You may want to contact St.George directly to confirm whether your pension is eligible.
As Virgin Money credit cards are issued by Citi, they follow the same rules as the bank.
Retired and pensioner applicants: A letter from Centrelink showing applicant's name and the permanent government pension amount, three most recent bank statements showing applicant's regular Centrelink payments, your annual superannuation statement, which includes an indexed pension amount, or one most recent self-managed superannuation tax return less than 15 months old.
Retired applicants: If you’re retired, you need to provide your gross annual income (before tax and including super) and provide your most recent superannuation statement.
Pensioner applicants: If you’re on a pension, you’ll need to provide your most recent Centrelink statement.
Mistakes to avoid when applying for a credit card
Not doing enough research
When you apply for a credit card as a pensioner or retiree, you'll need to meet specific eligibility requirements and submit specific documents to support your application. Comparing credit cards and researching your options before you apply will help you make sure you meet these requirements and can increase your chances of approval.
If you’re unsure of what you need to provide for a specific credit card, you can read find it on the application's webpage or contact the provider to confirm any queries you have before applying. Keep in mind that rejected applications will have a negative impact on your credit report, so doing this research will help maximise your chances of approval.
If your previous credit card application has been rejected, don’t immediately apply for another one. Instead, consider why your application wasn't approved. If you hadn’t organised the necessary documents, confirm which ones you’re missing before applying again. If you were rejected because of your credit history, you’ll need to take some time to improve your credit score before applying again.
Learn how to improve your credit score here. If you’re retired or on a pension, there are a variety of credit card options to choose from. However, as you’ll likely need to meet some extra conditions, it’s important to do your research and compare a range of cards so you can apply for one that fits your circumstances and needs.
Sally McMullen is Finder's credit cards and frequent flyer editor by day and a music maven by night. Her byline can be spotted on Yahoo Finance, Dynamic Business, Financy and Mamamia as well as Music Feeds and Rolling Stone.
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