I'm an employed 19 year old confused about making a plan

greasygoose

    Hi, recently I've wanted to switch from my dad's Verizon plan to my own T-Mobile plan because I want to help him out and become a bit more independent. I checked out T-Mobile's plan for a single device and just threw on an iPhone X to see how much the monthly cost would be. I have a debit card and a steady job, but I've never had a credit card before, because I've never needed one yet. However when I chose the "no credit" option on adding the phone to my plan, it said I have to pay the full price upfront? And even when I went to "average credit", it said you still have to pay around $700 upfront, and pay off the remaining $300 monthly? I understand T-Mobile wants reliable customers but is there some other way to create a plan for myself? Do I need to get a credit card to prove I have a steady income and I'm reliable? It seems impossible for me to create a phone plan with T-Mobile when even if I had average credit, there's that steep $700 upfront payment. I've never had my own plan before and I'm just a little lost. Any help is appreciated!

      All replies

      • smplyunprdctble

        One option is to get your current Verizon phone unlocked and use that for a year.  After a year of on-time payments, you're considered a "Well Qualified" customer: Smartphone Equality -- but, my guess as to part of the reason you're moving is you want an iPhone X and your dd doesn't want to put it on his plan (I have parents, and if I were... um... a few years younger, that's what would happen).  But, a year is a long time to still keep your current device, assuming it's already two years old.

         

        Another option is to get a less expensive device.  Not ideal, I know.  But, starter plans usually get starter phones (my sister doesn't get her kids the top-of-the-line devices, they get her and her husband's older phones to keep costs down).

         

        Third option is to have your parents open the T-Mobile account, but that's not taking responsibility on your own.  And, when you decide you want a new device, you'd have to go through them still -- and you're still in the same situation if you want to move to your own account.  Except, you might have some credit by then.

         

        An idea that just came to mind is what happens if you try to buy the phone from Apple?  They have their own financing, I think?  Or does their financing go through the phone provider you pick?  (I'm an Android guy, and when I bought the Pixel 2, it was through Google-based financing, not T-Mobile)

         

        I'm not going to suggest saving up for the phone because... well... when I was that age, keeping savings was difficult because my part time workstudy job didn't pay enough to get the amount within a reasonable time.

         

        The unfortunate problem is your age.  At that age, my credit card was $300.  It's because nobody knows that you're as awesome as you are with paying your bills.  Credit needs to start at the bottom and be built up.

        2 of 2 people found this helpful
          • greasygoose

            What would the process be of my dad opening my account on T-Mobile? Would he have to cancel his plan with Verizon to do so or can he open it and get the phone and I can pay him to make the payments? I'm doing this both for the "I wanna grow up and have my own plan" idea and the fact I want the X. I'm okay with him helping me do this, it's just me being on his Verizon plan makes his bill bigger. I also like T-Mobile more than Verizon and just want to be part of the community as silly as that sounds lol! Thank you so much for helping btw!!!

              • smplyunprdctble

                He wouldn't have to cancel his VZW plan.

                 

                He can go to a T-Mobile store and say "I want to create a plan" -- he can port your number over to it.  It will just be in his name (which also means caller id for landlines may be in his name, which may be the case now?).  He can give you the login information to the account and you can make payments on it using your own card (though, from a security standpoint, this isn't exactly a good thing, but I digress, you're bending rules, not breaking rules).

                 

                What I would suggest if you do this is to make double+ EIP payments, where possible to pay the phone off early.  Once the phone is paid off, transfer ownership to you so you can start the credit building in your name.  After a year of that, you become "Well Qualified" and you'll be able to get the lowest down payment for any future devices.

                2 of 2 people found this helpful
            • tmo_marissa

              Hey, greasygoose! I know smplyunprdctble has offered up some awesome advice here -- I just want to make sure you don't have any additional questions we can help with. Please let us know if you do! <3

                • greasygoose

                  The advice given has been really helpful! I just have one more question really. Does my phone bill on Verizon and the remainder of my current phone have to be paid off before we're allowed to do any of the tips given? Thank you guys for being attentive and helpful.

                    • smplyunprdctble

                      greasygoose wrote:

                       

                      The advice given has been really helpful! I just have one more question really. Does my phone bill on Verizon and the remainder of my current phone have to be paid off before we're allowed to do any of the tips given? Thank you guys for being attentive and helpful.

                      Those are probably best answered by Verizon as they're Verizon related.

                       

                      My guess is the phone has to be paid off, however, depending on Verizon's rules, if an installment is on a line, they may let the installment continue (you'll still have to pay any existing phone payments).  And, your Verizon bill has to be in good standing.

                       

                      They won't prorate a partial month, so we suggest porting out a day or three before the end of the bill cycle so you're not paying a full month and getting a couple days.

                      1 of 1 people found this helpful
                      • dragon1562

                        Seems like the community pretty much tied this up nicely. I just want to suggest that it may be a good idea to get a credit card first and build up credit. The reason is because it will be more beneficial for you in the long term of life and realistically speaking the Iphone X is not the best phone for T-mobile in my humble opinion. It lacks some of the wireless technology that is being utilized and when spending that kind of money I would want something that will last and give me the best performance all around.

                         

                        Also I know for a fact that Apple does their own financing and in doing so it will enable you to upgrade each year should you go that route and provides you with a unlocked device out of the box. I personally go this route for my Iphone purchases. Hopefully this additional info helps.

                        1 of 1 people found this helpful