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5 Best Secured Credit Cards

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We feature the top 5 secured credit cards. Find a credit card that matches your lifestyle. Bad credit, poor credit, and no credit history are OK. Credit lines from $200 to $5000. Fast approval process.

The list is based on APR rates, annual fees, cash back rewards, and expedited card issuance.

Our pick for

Best Rewards Program

Surge Secured Mastercard®

Surge Secured Mastercard®

Annual Fee $69
Rewards Rate 1%
APR Rate 19.99% Variable
Recommended Credit Score
300 Poor
670 Average
Why We Like It Pros & Cons Product Details

The Surge Secured Mastercard offers 1% cashback rewards on all of your purchases. A cashback rewards program is something that is extremely rare with secured credit cards.

Furthermore, the approval process is quick and seamless and applying does not affect your credit score.

Our pick for

Best Low fixed APR

Applied Bank® Secured Visa® Gold Preferred® Credit Card

Applied Bank® Secured Visa® Gold Preferred® Credit Card

Annual Fee $48
Rewards Rate N/A
APR Rate 9.99% Fixed
Recommended Credit Score
300 Poor
670 Average
Why We Like It Pros & Cons Product Details

The regular APR of 9.99% is extremely competitive and makes the Applied Bank® Secured Visa® Gold Preferred® Credit Card one of the best deals on the market for consumers who need a secured credit card.

This credit card also offers the option to have a credit line up to $5000, this is higher than many competiting secured credit card offers.

Our pick for

Discharged bankruptcy or No Credit History

First Progress Platinum Prestige MasterCard® Secured Credit Card

First Progress Platinum Prestige MasterCard® Secured Credit Card

Annual Fee $49
Rewards Rate N/A
APR Rate 9.99% (V)
Recommended Credit Score
300 Poor
670 Average
Why We Like It Pros & Cons Product Details

The regular APR of 9.99% is extremely competitive and makes the First Progress Platinum Prestige MasterCard® Secured Credit Card one of the best deals on the market for consumers who need a secured credit card.

A credit line up to $2000 should be sufficient for most consumers.

 

Our pick for

Best Mobile App

First Progress Platinum Select MasterCard® Secured Credit Card

First Progress Platinum Select MasterCard® Secured Credit Card

Annual Fee $39
Rewards Rate N/A
APR Rate 13.99% (V)
Recommended Credit Score
300 Poor
670 Average
Why We Like It Pros & Cons Product Details

The First Progress Platinum Select MasterCard® Secured Credit Card offers a very flexible credit line that is designed to match your lifestyle. When applying choose a credit line from $200 to $2,000.

Expedited processing also ensures you won’t have to wait for long to receive your credit card.

Our pick for

Low Annual Fee

The First Progress Platinum Elite MasterCard® Secured Credit Card

The First Progress Platinum Elite MasterCard® Secured Credit Card

Annual Fee $29
Rewards Rate N/A
APR Rate 19.99% (V)
Recommended Credit Score
300 Poor
670 Average
Why We Like It Pros & Cons Product Details

The First Progress Platinum Elite MasterCard® Secured Credit Card has an extremely low annual fee for a secured credit card.

This credit card also offers a very flexible credit line that is designed to match your lifestyle. When applying choose a credit line from $200 to $2,000.

The Expedited Processing Option also ensures you receive your credit card quickly.

Getting a secured credit card

Who can be approved?

Secured credit cards are designed for consumers who for numerous reasons may have no credit history, bad credit, poor credit, or below average credit. The security deposit serves as peace of mind to the credit card issuer that should you default on your monthly credit card payments, that they can retain the deposit. Some of these secured credit cards also issue credit cards to consumers who have been discharged from bankruptcy, but this is up to the individual credit card issuer. Nonetheless, there is no 100% guarantee of approval, credit card issuers differ but they follow protocols that are similar to the ones below:

  • The credit card issuer may choose to review your credit card report for signs that you are an unacceptable credit risk.  They will usually (but not always) check your credit report for signs that you’re an unacceptable credit risk. They may review to verify that you are not in the middle of a bankruptcy, or have indicators of potentially being delinquent on multiple accounts.

  • A checking account is almost always required. Often a proof of work and income is required to indicate that you have the means to pay your credit card bill regularly. The security deposit is only meant as a last resort in case you become delinquent on your payments.

How does the process work?

Once you visit the credit card issuers website you will encounter a form. Each form is different but the credit card issuer collects the information that they deem necessary. Below is a step-by-step process:

  1. You apply for the card by completely the form. The credit card issuer can then choose to manually or automatically evaluate your risk profile in a process called underwriting, This is the stage when you are declined or approved.

  2. If approved the next step is to send the funds for the required deposit, the amount will differ based on the credit limit and the credit card issuer.  In the bulk of cases it is necessary to provide banking details with your application to automatically fund the account. In some cases the issuer will offer some time to collect the funds and send them in. If the funds are not received in a timely manner, the account is automatically declined.

  3. Once the payment is received you are then issued your credit card. You can use your credit card similar to any other regular credit card. Example of purchases may include groceries, car rentals, flight bookings, online purchases, etc. 

  4. It will be your responsibility to pay the credit card bill on time every month. In order to avoid paying high interest rates it is always recommended to pay your balance in full.  The credit card issuer reports your payments to the credit bureaus, this helps to build credit.

Unsecured cards for bad credit

While getting a secured credit card might be the best option for most consumers who have bad or poor credit, another option is to apply for credit cards that are designed for people with bad or poor credit. Please view our list for the Best Bad Credit Credit Cards.

Frequently asked questions

What are Secured Credit Cards?

This is simply a credit card that is backed by a cash deposit from the cardholder. This serves as collateral on the users account, the purpose is to provide the credit card issuer with the security that the funds are secure in case the cardholder cannot make a payment. These types of credit cards are often the best option for people who have zero credit history, or a bad or poor credit score.

How difficult is it to get approved?

Getting approved is relatively easy due to the fact that the amount of credit issued to the consumer matches the amount of the security deposit. For example, if your security deposit is $300, you will then be able to spend up to $300 on your credit card.

Why is no credit check important?

Everytime there is a credit check it is is recorded on your credit report and this may reduce your overall credit score. This is why it is beneficial to avoid credit checks when at all possible.

Do I need a secured credit card?

If you have no credit history, bad or poor credit, the best way to ensure that you are approved for a credit card is with a secured credit card as this dramatically reduces the risk to the credit card issuer. That being stated, you may still be approved if you apply for a card under our Bad Credit Credit Cards page.

What is an APR?

APR is short for Annual Percentage Rate.  This is the interest applied to your account for the duration of a billing cycle

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