You turn to secured credit cards when you need to build your credit or restore it after a misstep or even fiasco. Secured credit card issuers send monthly reports on your credit activity to major credit bureaus contributing to your credit history. Paying your bills on time and using up to a third of your credit limit may foster your credit score and qualify you for the most attractive credit products.
Even if your credit score is modest (550-620), you can benefit from rewards programs. You start earning cash back with the Discover it® Secured Credit Card and later graduate to an unsecured card with all the collected rewards.
You earn 1% cashback on every purchase and 2% at gas stations and restaurants on up to $1 000 of spend per quarter. For new cardmembers the bank doubles the earned rewards at the end of the first year.
After a 7-month period, the bank starts monitoring your credit activity. Using your credit products responsibly may qualify you for an upgrade to an unsecured card. Even if you start with a deposit equal to your credit limit, you can get it back after the upgrade. Your card will become unsecured without any additional application or account cancellation. Such shift is entirely safe for your credit score.
If your financial situation is rather fine and you need just one final spurt to boost your credit score while earning rewards, the Discover it® Secured Credit Card will suit you best.
In the situation of no or limited credit history, you may qualify for the Secured MasterCard® from Capital One®.
This semi-secured credit card allows you to start with the lowest deposit in the industry. To get an initial credit line of $200, you have to pay a deposit of either $49, or $99, or $200. The exact amount depends on your creditworthiness.
After 5 months of on-time payments, the bank may increase your credit limit with no additional deposit. To raise available limits up to $3,000 on your own, you should deposit that precise amount within 80 days after the approval and before the card activation.
This is the most affordable secured credit card since you can start with as little as $49. If you have never had any serious credit damage (like bankruptcy) and want to start building your credit, this card may be an attractive option for you to consider.
Having no credit history, you may build it from scratch with the Citi® Secured MasterCard®.
You also may qualify for this card if you have a bad credit score but no bankruptcy record in the past 2 years. Just make sure that your monthly income is clearly higher than your monthly debt payments. Upon the approval, you will have to pay a deposit (minimum $200) to secure your credit card and define its limit. The bank will hold onto the deposit for one year and a half.
If your financial situation is decent and you are looking for an opportunity to build credit at a reputable bank, this card may become a great starting point for you.
You have a chance to recover from a bankruptcy or other major credit damage with the OpenSky® Secured Visa® credit card.
Anybody qualifies for this card as there is no credit check for applicants, except for the bank cardholders. Neither credit history, nor checking account is required. You may receive a line of credit from $200 and up to $3,000 secured with an equal deposit.
All you need to start working on your credit score is 5 minutes to apply, $200 to pay a minimum deposit and $35 to pay your annual fee.
We have grouped secured credit cards from our database according to their purposes and approval requirements. This Top 4 list shows one best card with the most useful features and lowest usage costs per group. For alternative variants please check our ratings for particular groups.