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Secured Credit Cards

Secured credit cards are designed for people with bad credit or no credit. They’re able to essentially guarantee approval regardless of your credit history or income because they require a refundable security deposit of at least $200 that acts as your credit line and prevents you from overspending. This reduces the issuer’s risk and also explains why the fees on a secured credit card tend to be considerably lower than those charged by unsecured credit cards for bad credit. You may even be able to find a secured card with no annual or monthly fees.

The cards displayed on this…show more

    4 4,588 reviews

    Capital One® Secured MasterCard®


    capital one secured credit card
    • Secured Credit Card Min Deposit of $49, $99 or $200
    • One-Time Fees None
    • Regular Rate 24.9% (V)
    • Annual Fee None
    • Monthly Fee None
    • Minimum Credit Bad
    • Rewards Details
    • Additional Info
    • No annual fee, with all the credit building benefits
    • Unlike a prepaid card, it builds credit when used responsibly, with regular reporting to the 3 major credit bureaus
    • Free access to your credit score and learn how everyday decisions can affect your score using Capital One® Credit Tracker
    • Your minimum security deposit gets you a $200 credit line
    • You may qualify for a credit line increase based on your payment history and creditworthiness with no additional deposit required
    • Easily manage your account 24/7 with online access, by phone, or using our mobile app
    • It’s a credit card accepted at millions of locations worldwide
    • See More Details & Reviews About The Capital One® Secured MasterCard®
    3 378 reviews

    Primor® Secured Visa Gold Credit Card


    primor secured visa gold card
    • Secured Credit Card Min Deposit of $200
    • One-Time Fees None
    • Regular Rate 9.99%
    • Annual Fee $49
    • Monthly Fee None
    • Minimum Credit Bad
    3 124 reviews

    Primor® Secured Visa Classic Credit Card


    primor credit card
    • Secured Credit Card Min Deposit of $200
    • One-Time Fees None
    • Regular Rate 13.99%
    • Annual Fee $39
    • Monthly Fee None
    • Minimum Credit Bad
    3.5 2,014 reviews

    Open SkySM Secured Visa® Credit Card


    open sky credit card
    • Secured Credit Card Min Deposit of $200
    • One-Time Fees None
    • Regular Rate 17.5% (V)
    • Annual Fee $29
    • Monthly Fee None
    • Minimum Credit Bad
    • Rewards Details
    • Additional Info
    • Build Your Credit, with monthly updates to all 3 credit bureaus.
    • Control Your Finances, start with a security deposit and credit line as low as $200.
    • Extra Credit When You Need It, increase your credit line up to $5000.
    • Avoid paying interest, no interest charged on new purchases if the balance is paid in full by the due date each month.
    • Easy funding options, with 4 ways to fund and NO checking account needed.
    • After your Account is open for one year or more Capital Bank will charge you a Credit Limit Increase Fee of $25.00 each time you add Deposit Funds and increase the Credit Limit and a Credit Limit Decrease Request Fee of $25.00 each time you request a reduction in your Credit Limit.
    • Apply in less than 5 minutes.
    • See More Details & Reviews About The Open SkySM Secured Visa® Credit Card
    3 1,449 reviews

    First Progress Platinum Select MasterCard® Secured Credit Card


    first progress secured credit card
    • Secured Credit Card Min Deposit of $300
    • One-Time Fees None
    • Regular Rate 14.99% (V)
    • Annual Fee $39
    • Monthly Fee None
    • Minimum Credit Bad
    • Rewards Details
    • Additional Info
    • Full-feature Platinum MasterCard secured credit card.
    • No credit history or minimum credit score required for approval.
    • Monthly reporting to all 3 major credit bureaus to help build credit.
    • Set your own credit limit, which is secured by your deposit of $300 - $2,000.
    • Deposit held at FDIC-insured bank.
    • 24/7 access to your account online.
    • The First Progress Platinum MasterCard Secured Card requires no credit history or minimum credit score for approval, but the refundable security deposit must be provided before a card can be issued. The new CARD Act regulations also require all credit card issuers to verify the identity of every applicant before approval. We can usually complete this identity verification using fast, automated methods, but it is sometimes necessary for us to contact an applicant in order to verify his or her identity. Applicants will receive their cards more quickly if they respond promptly to our call or letter relating to this verification process. Virtually every applicant who successfully provides the refundable security deposit and passes the identity verification step will be approved for the card. If you have applied for the card and have a question or want to check the status of your application, please call First Progress toll-free at (888) 403-4783.
    • Receive your card more quickly with new Expedited Processing option.
    • See More Details & Reviews About The First Progress Platinum Select MasterCard® Secured Credit Card
    3.5 799 reviews

    First Progress Platinum Elite MasterCard® Secured Credit Card


    platinum secured credit card
    • Secured Credit Card Min Deposit of $300
    • One-Time Fees None
    • Regular Rate 19.99% (V)
    • Annual Fee $29
    • Monthly Fee None
    • Minimum Credit Bad
    • Rewards Details
    • Additional Info
    • Full-feature Platinum MasterCard secured credit card.
    • No credit history or minimum credit score required for approval.
    • Monthly reporting to all 3 major credit bureaus to help build credit.
    • Set your own credit limit, which is secured by your deposit of $300 - $2,000.
    • Deposit held at FDIC-insured bank.
    • 24/7 access to your account online.
    • The First Progress Platinum MasterCard Secured Card requires no credit history or minimum credit score for approval, but the refundable security deposit must be provided before a card can be issued. The new CARD Act regulations also require all credit card issuers to verify the identity of every applicant before approval. We can usually complete this identity verification using fast, automated methods, but it is sometimes necessary for us to contact an applicant in order to verify his or her identity. Applicants will receive their cards more quickly if they respond promptly to our call or letter relating to this verification process. Virtually every applicant who successfully provides the refundable security deposit and passes the identity verification step will be approved for the card. If you have applied for the card and have a question or want to check the status of your application, please call First Progress toll-free at (888) 403-4783.
    • Receive your card more quickly with new Expedited Processing option.
    • See More Details & Reviews About The First Progress Platinum Elite MasterCard® Secured Credit Card
    3 580 reviews

    First Progress Platinum Prestige MasterCard® Secured Credit Card


    first progress mastercard secured credit card
    • Secured Credit Card Min Deposit of $300
    • One-Time Fees None
    • Regular Rate 11.99% (V)
    • Annual Fee $44
    • Monthly Fee None
    • Minimum Credit Bad
    • Rewards Details
    • Additional Info
    • No credit history or minimum credit score required for approval.
    • Monthly reporting to all 3 major credit bureaus to help build credit.
    • Deposit held at FDIC-insured bank.
    • Set your own credit limit, which is secured by your deposit of $300 - $2,000.
    • The First Progress Platinum MasterCard Secured Card requires no credit history or minimum credit score for approval, but the refundable security deposit must be provided before a card can be issued. The new CARD Act regulations also require all credit card issuers to verify the identity of every applicant before approval. We can usually complete this identity verification using fast, automated methods, but it is sometimes necessary for us to contact an applicant in order to verify his or her identity. Applicants will receive their cards more quickly if they respond promptly to our call or letter relating to this verification process. Virtually every applicant who successfully provides the refundable security deposit and passes the identity verification step will be approved for the card. If you have applied for the card and have a question or want to check the status of your application, please call First Progress toll-free at (888) 403-4783.
    • Receive your card more quickly with new Expedited Processing option.
    • See More Details & Reviews About The First Progress Platinum Prestige MasterCard® Secured Credit Card
    3.5 172 reviews

    USAA Secured Cards® American Express® Card


    usaa secured credit card
    • Secured Credit Card Min Deposit of $250
    • One-Time Fees None
    • Regular Rate 9.9% - 19.9% (V)
    • Annual Fee $35
    • Monthly Fee None
    • Minimum Credit Bad
    • Rewards Details
    • Additional Info
    • It’s a real credit card that helps you build or improve your credit score.
    • The card is secured by an interest-earning CD that you establish and is guaranteed to grow
    • Your credit can improve when you avoid going over your limit and make payments on time
    • Retail and Travel Benefits: Collision damage waiver coverage pays for physical damage and theft to most rental vehicles
    • Security: Zero liability coverage for unauthorized transactions if your card is lost or stolen
    • Special Benefits for Military: Get 4% APR on all balances for up to 12 months during deployment or PCS. After 12 months, the regular APR of between 9.90% and 19.90% will apply. This rate will vary with the market based on the prime rate
    • Cash Advance Fee is waived when you transfer funds electronically from your USAA credit card to your USAA Bank deposit account
    • See More Details & Reviews About The USAA Secured Cards® American Express® Card
    3 7 reviews

    USAA Secured Cards® Platinum MasterCard®


    usaa secured mastercard
    • Secured Credit Card Min Deposit of $250
    • One-Time Fees None
    • Regular Rate 9.9% - 19.9% (V)
    • Annual Fee $35
    • Monthly Fee None
    • Minimum Credit Bad
    • Rewards Details
    • Additional Info
    • It’s a real credit card that helps you build or improve your credit score.
    • The card is secured by an interest-earning CD that you establish and is guaranteed to grow.
    • Your credit can improve when you avoid going over your limit and make payments on time.
    • Retail and Travel Benefits: Collision damage waiver coverage pays for physical damage and theft to most rental vehicles.
    • Security: Zero liability coverage for unauthorized transactions if your card is lost or stolen.
    • Special Benefits for Military: Get 4% APR on all balances for up to 12 months during deployment or PCS. After 12 months, the regular APR of between 9.90% and 19.90% will apply. This rate will vary with the market based on the prime rate.
    • Cash Advance Fee is waived when you transfer funds electronically from your USAA credit card to your USAA Bank deposit account
    • See More Details & Reviews About The USAA Secured Cards® Platinum MasterCard®
    3 719 reviews

    Wells Fargo® Secured Credit Card


    wells fargo secured card
    • Secured Credit Card Min Deposit of $300
    • One-Time Fees None
    • Regular Rate 18.99% (V)
    • Annual Fee $25
    • Monthly Fee None
    • Minimum Credit Bad
    • Rewards Details
    • Additional Info
    • Deposit an amount, from $300 to $10,000 into a Collateral Account. Your credit card limit equals the amount of money in your Collateral Account.
    • Your purchases are billed to you each month and you are responsible for making at least the minimum monthly payment. Payments are not deducted from your Collateral Account.
    • As a cardholder, your account performance is reported to major credit bureaus
    • Stay on top of your account activity with free email alerts when you approach your credit limit, a payment is due, and more.
    • Easily track your expenses. My Spending Report with Budget Watch has built-in tools that help you see where your money is going and easily set up a budget.
    • Visa benefits: Auto rental collision damage waiver, Emergency card replacement, Roadside dispatch and Travel and emergency assistance services.
    • Verified by Visa: Protect your Wells Fargo Visa card with a unique password for online shopping.
    • Secured Card accounts are reviewed periodically and may become eligible for an unsecured credit card and have the Collateral Account funds refunded.
    • Zero Liability Program: automatically protects you from liability for unauthorized transactions when you report them promptly
    • Overdraft protection: You may link your credit card to your checking account to help avoid overdrafts
    • All Secured cardholders have access to free online credit education courses and tips to help you manage credit wisely
    • See More Details & Reviews About The Wells Fargo® Secured Credit Card
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    Excellent Credit 721 – 850
    Good Credit 661 – 720
    Fair Credit 620 – 660
    Bad Credit 300 – 619
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    Expert’s Answers

    What is a secured credit card and why use one?

    By: Odysseas Papadimitriou, CardHub CEOAs mentioned above, a secured credit card is exactly like any other credit card, with the sole exception being that you place a security deposit in opening it and, upon closing it in good standing, get that security deposit back. Other than that, there is literally no difference.

    There are three main reasons to open a secured credit card: 1) to build credit no matter how bad your credit standing may be; 2) to ensure you do not spend more than you can afford; and 3) to make certain purchases that require use of a credit card.

    First, if you have damaged or limited credit, a secured credit card offers the ability to build credit cheaply. With that being said, whether or not you actually use a secured card to make purchases is a matter of personal preference. Your credit score will benefit regardless based on the fact that you’ll be reported monthly to the major credit bureaus as having a certain amount of available credit in good standing. Making everyday purchases and paying for them in full will provide slightly higher gains in terms of your credit score, but if you’ve had problems with credit in the past, you may feel more comfortable simply locking your secured credit card away in a drawer.

    Second, if you are concerned that you cannot spend responsibly, a secure card will help you avoid getting in over your head thanks to a security deposit that acts as your spending limit. In this manner, these types of cards “help overleveragers stay in control of their spending,” according to Dr. Irene Sharf, a professor at the University of Massachusetts School of Law.

    Third, secured credit cards provide a means of making purchases that cannot be completed with cash—car rentals, hotel bookings and online shopping, for example—while also giving you $0 fraud liability.

    Secured Credit Cards vs. Unsecured Credit Cards

    By: John Kiernan, Personal Finance EditorIf you have bad credit, you may be given the choice between a secured credit card and an unsecured credit card for bad credit. Which you should choose depends on why you need a credit card to begin with.

    If you’re seeking a credit card simply to rebuild your credit standing, a secured credit card will be your most accessible and least expensive option.

    On the other hand, if you want a credit card because you need a loan in addition to credit building capabilities, then an unsecured credit card for people with bad credit may offer you the additional line of credit that you’re looking for.

    The drawback here is that the fee structure is generally more expensive. Not only will you have to pay a hefty annual fee that effectively reduces the amount of credit at your disposal, but you may even have to pay an initial processing fee before you are even given a card. That's why many people who use unsecured credit cards for bad credit end up getting very little additional credit to work with at the end of the day, defying the purpose of using such a card to begin with.

    Ultimately, it's therefore usually best to wait until you have enough money to place a security deposit for a secured card. While opening an unsecured credit card for bad credit might be the quicker route for those who don't have enough savings for the deposit, it will likely turn out to be the more expensive one as well.

    Why have a security deposit?

    By: Odysseas Papadimitriou, CardHub CEOA security deposit allows credit card companies to offer essentially guaranteed approval and relatively low fees, given that it protects them from consumers who default on their credit cards. While the security deposit required to open a secured credit card often scares off consumers, it’s actually a benefit. First of all, because your monthly spending cannot surpass the amount of your security deposit, you’re far less likely to spend beyond your means with a secured credit card than a traditional unsecured credit card. Second, it’s only because of the security deposit that many consumers are afforded a second chance at credit card use. Finally, don’t forget that the deposit is refundable, so even though you’ll be slightly less liquid after opening a secured card to rebuild credit, you won’t ultimately be out any money as long as you do not have an unpaid balance upon closing the card.

    Are secured credit cards reported to the major credit bureaus?

    By: John Kiernan, Personal Finance EditorYes. The activity on secured cards is reported to the major credit bureaus in the same way the activity on all other credit cards is reported. In fact, when a lender reviews your credit report they can not tell whether you have a secured credit card or an unsecured credit card.

    Do secured cards offer guaranteed approval?

    By: Odysseas Papadimitriou, CardHub CEOThe short answer to this question is “yes.” However, if you have recently gone through bankruptcy, there are some banks that may not be willing to approve you for a secured card until your debts have been discharged for at least a year. In the unlikely event that you do not get approved for a secure card, just apply for another bank’s secured credit card because your key priority should be getting a credit card as soon as possible in order to lessen the weight of negative information on your credit reports.

    What’s a good deposit amount for a new secured credit card?

    By: John Kiernan, Personal Finance EditorA minimum security deposit between $200 and $500 is generally required to open a secured credit card. As your credit line will most likely mirror the amount of your deposit, the higher the security deposit, the more available credit you will have. Similarly, the more available credit you have, the more favorably you will be viewed by credit scoring agencies, such as FICO. As you can imagine, using only a portion of your credit gets easier with higher credit lines. As a result, we recommend placing the highest deposit possible when you apply for a secured credit card and adding to it over time. Just keep in mind that most secured credit card issuers won’t allow your total deposit to exceed $5,000.

    How should I use my secured credit card in order to improve my credit?

    By: Odysseas Papadimitriou, CardHub CEOFirst and foremost, make sure you don’t miss a single minimum payment. Second, add to your deposit over time, since higher credit limits look better on your credit report. Finally, make sure to only spend up to 50% of your limit each month, as lenders like to see a low utilization ratio (this is the balance on your secure card at the end of the month in relation to your credit line).

    In short, your primary objective and biggest hurdle will be to avoid repeating the past mistakes that have necessitated using a secured card in the first place. "Sadly, many of the folks who get into financial trouble probably tend to be the ones who have the greatest difficulty managing their affairs, and are therefore often the ones most likely to repeat their mistakes," says Michael Floyd, a professor at the Samford University Cumberland School of Law and an expert on banking law. "I fear that buying a product to make yourself more financially responsible is no more effective than buying a health club membership or exercise machine to get yourself in better physical shape. Ultimately, improvements only happen slowly as the result of careful and consistent effort."

    How can I move from a secured credit card to an unsecured card?

    By: Odysseas Papadimitriou, CardHub CEOIn general, issuers will approve you for an unsecured card after about a year of responsible secured card use (i.e. making on-time payments to all credit cards and loans.) Switching from a secured card to an unsecured credit card typically occurs in one of the following ways:
    1. You close your secured card after getting approved for an unsecured card – As long as your balance in paid in full, your secured card issuer will send you a check for the amount of your security deposit.
    2. Your issuer offers you a credit limit increase – If the bank that issued your secured credit card reviews your account and concludes that you have proven yourself a responsible credit user, it might offer you a credit limit increase. This would convert your secured credit card to a partially unsecured card, and your deposit will not be returned until you close this account.
    3. Your issuer converts your account to an unsecured credit card account – In this scenario, your existing account will remain open but your deposit will be returned to you via check or as a statement credit.

    Community Discussion

    Ask a question or help others find the best secured credit cards by sharing some tips.

     
    Aug 28, 2015
    By:
    While I believe that a secured card can be a good thing for people with poor credit I urge you to be careful. Please do your research and go with a company that wants to help you build your credit back up, not slowly milk fees out of you every month. Yes, there will be fees involved. However there is a wide range of those fees. Do your research before getting a secured card and it can be a great tool in helping you build your credit back up.
    Aug 13, 2015
    By:
    My very first card was given to me via BoA through their BoA Secured Credit Card. I started off with a $500 balance, which was refunded to me after a year of perfect payments, which allowed me to learn the ropes of the credit game. The card doesn't come with anything fancy aside from the initial deposit refund you get after your first year, but secured cards are meant to be a learning experience.
    Aug 6, 2015
    By:
    As with many of the few options available to those with bad credit, you are not going to get a golden deal with a secured card. There seem to be many more fees attached. I remember seeing a yearly fee of $99 on one followed by a monthly fee of $9.99. I even think there was a fee with every deposit you made to the card. I know the company needs to earn money somehow for providing this service to you. I just think of it as the cost associated with fixing my credit.

    Just like with automobile loans for people with bad credit, you ARE going to have to bite the bullet and pay more.

    In the end, if you need to repair your credit, then secured cards are a decent way to work on that. They leave monthly good marks on your credit report.
    Aug 6, 2015
    By:
    Secured credit cards are a great idea for people with bad credit. They are a way to restore your credit and have little risk the loaning company. The upfront deposit allows the credit card company to be protected against non payment of debts. While the consumer gets to use credit where they normally wouldn't since their credit scores are so bad.
    Jul 24, 2015
    By:
    I currently have decent credit, due to my credit score I am currently using a secured credit card. Secured credit cards have allowed me to rebuild my credit score, it did take roughly 8 months of making all my payments on time and paying more than the minimum payment. If you're like me and you don't have the best credit score then I would highly anticipate getting a secured credit card to build that credit score back up again ! I personally use Capital One's secured credit card, I would check them out !
    Jul 24, 2015
    By:
    I absolutely would recommend secured credit cards to anyone that is either new to the credit world, or have ruined credit and are trying to repair. After my divorce, I found that my credit was less then stellar, but thanks to my local bank's secured credit card program, I was able to find a quick and cost-effective way to rebuild that credit in no time at all!
    Jul 19, 2015
    By:
    I personally trust Capital One the most out of the vendors available. You can never be too careful when it comes to fees, charges, and especially unexpected ones. Luckily they give clear information about their charges and fees which is more than most companies are willing to give you. These fees are also reasonable and affordable. The card's cash advance rate is a bit high but I rarely use my credit cards for cash anyways. It's much safer to use the card to purchase items than pay the fees relating to cash advances.
    Jul 11, 2015
    By:
    What is Apr?
    Jul 16, 2015
    Photo of Card H.
    APR stands for “Annual Percentage Rate” and reflects the interest you would pay on a balance carried month to month. You can learn more in our APR Guide: http://www.cardhub.com/edu/annual-percentage-rate/
    Jul 7, 2015
    By:
    Are there any secured credit cards that match your deposit?
    Jul 10, 2015
    Photo of Card H.
    While most secured cards offer a credit line equal to your security deposit, any outstanding balances will be subtracted from the amount you get back when you close your account. No secured card offers a defined initial deposit match, by providing you with a $400 spending limit when you put down $200, for instance. However, some partially-secured cards will provide a credit line that exceeds your refundable deposit, if your credit standing is good enough. But you won’t know how much you’ll get when you apply.
    Jun 28, 2015
    By:
    The best secured credit card I feel is the Capital One Secured MasterCard. Unlike other cards, this one does not have an annual fee or a monthly fee. Why pay a monthly or yearly fee when you don’t have to? Also the minimum deposit can be as low as $49. This is perfect for those who are trying to rebuild their credit and don’t have much money. You get a $200 credit line with your minimum deposit. This should be enough to show creditors that you are responsible. Just make sure to use the card responsibly and your credit card should go up in a few months.
    Jun 27, 2015
    By:
    I decided that the Primor Secured Visa Gold card was the best choice for me. The other Primor card would have been $10.00 a year less expensive on the annual fee, but the Gold card normal interest rate was 13.99% whereas the Gold Card offered 9.99%, which in the long run makes up for the difference in the annual fee. The card has a low initial minimum amount of $200 so it is not that big of an investment. I must admit, I was drawn to the Harley Davidson card, just for the "status", but the costs associated with it was not worth the extra "status" you may or may not get when flashing the card in front of your friends. The card I chose also reported to the 3 major credit bureaus which will help rebuild my credit.
    Jun 26, 2015
    By:
    I am currently using a secured credit card due to my credit history being in a poor status. After you make some mistakes with your credit, it is very difficult to rebuild when you can't get new lines of credit established. Secured credit cards allow you to provide a deposit up front and use the card to rebuild your payment history and credit score over time. As long as you make all of the payments on time, the deposit is returned to you and then you can apply for a regular credit card to continue building your credit history.
    Jun 26, 2015
    By:
    Secured credit cards can be a great tool for recovering or establishing credit; while there are fees associated with secured cards, such as annual fees or one-time fees these fees are usually not much higher than the fees for cards given to those with lower credit. Secured cards do charge interest on balances carried over and do also require you to have the initial deposit of your credit line up front; however, using and maintaining a secured card is the first step to creating better credit and opening yourself up to being able to open "normal" credit cards.
    Jun 24, 2015
    By:
    When I was looking for a secured card, I was very cautious of terms and conditions. That was first thing I looked. Then I needed one with a decent annual fee. I have read horror stories of annual fees being over $50 a year that you have to pay upfront when you get the card. I preferred a secured card that didn't pull a credit card. I needed the credit card to improve my bad credit so the possibility of being denied was not an option. So I ended up going with the OpenSky secured credit card. The annual fee was low. The required security deposit wasn't too high and they don't pull your credit report. I couldn't be happier with this card.
    Jun 2, 2015
    By:
    I can see the value of the secured credit card as being a tool to re-establish a good credit standing and for this purpose I am all for a consumer to obtain one. Credit cards are a security in times of emergency, and there are times where credit cards are needed to act as security when purchasing or leasing. However, I am curious as to how the security deposit is held, why the financial institution holding the security deposit, does not have a reserve requirement from the fed and offer interest paid back for balances not used by the card holder.
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