What is a secured credit card?
Are Unsecured Credit Cards Heroes or Villains? Well, the financial world is much more complex than Marvel or DC movies. Therefore, to find out what unsecured credit cards really are, see the review below!
A secured credit card can help you get back on track
Understanding what a secured credit card is and how it works can change financially starting today!
After all, this is a tool that has allowed many people to access travel cards, mortgages, and high-volume loans. Want to know how this is possible? See the review below!
What is a secured credit card and how does it work?
Indeed, you may have heard about credit scores. In short, it is a “thermometer” that tells banks how responsible you are with your credit.
By “responsible,” I mean paying all your bills on time and keeping your credit utilization rate relatively low. When your credit score is good, you can access the best loans and credit cards.
However, when your score is bad or zero, banks tend to be more cautious when offering you a card and other services.
Most people with bad credit need to provide collateral before the bank can offer credit cards. This guarantee is, in fact, a cash deposit that will be under the responsibility of the bank.
Some secured cards become unsecured after a few months of good credit usage. In such cases, your deposit may even be refunded.
Also, your credit limit is always equal to the amount you deposit. However, good customers can qualify for higher limits without making new deposits.
Nevertheless, the bank will not be able to use this deposit as it wishes. It’s like an “emergency fund”.
If you do not pay your balance, the bank will use this amount to settle your account, and you will not be able to receive this money again.
Normally, the customer interested in the card makes the so-called “secured deposit” as soon as he is approved for credit products of this type. Therefore, these cards were called “secured credit cards”.
Now you know how to answer the question, “what is a secured credit card?” However, there is much more to know about these cards. Trust below:
Did you know that it is possible to earn money just by using a credit card? Read on to learn about the pros of rewards credit cards.
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What is the difference between a secured and an unsecured credit card?
Now that you know what a secured credit card is, it’s easy to explain what an unsecured card is. Thus, these cards do not require any kind of deposit from their customers for authorization to use them.
To obtain them, you must meet the criteria set by each card issuer. In many cases, this means having an average or higher credit score. In addition, unsecured cards often offer many other benefits.
Rewards programs, shopping and travel benefits, and lower interest rates are a few examples. On the other hand, secured cards tend to offer modest and less attractive benefits.
However, most secured credit cards have basic credit reporting services to credit bureaus. Therefore, this information will appear on your credit history if you use your credit responsibly.
With positive reposts, you can see your credit score grow in a few months.
Secured credit card pros and cons
Despised by some and loved by others, secured credit cards were once a part of life for many Americans. However, are these really good card options?
To better understand, see the list below and learn about the main advantages and disadvantages of this type of credit card:
- Possibility to build credit to have a better score and access other types of cards and banking services;
- It’s easy to get one of these: these tend to have low eligibility criteria;
- Most of these cards return your secured deposit after a few months of responsible use of the credit;
- People with financial difficulties and a history stained by bankruptcy can count on these cards to rebuild.
- Don’t expect perks like a rewards program, travel perks, or 0% APR periods. Most of these cards do not offer this type of benefit;
- It is common for these cards to charge higher interest rates than the average for other cards;
- To use this type of card, you must deposit at least $200;
- Your credit limit is usually equivalent to the money you have deposited. Thus, if you make low-value deposits, you will have a little credit limit at your disposal.
What credit score do you need to apply for a secured credit card?
Most secure cards do not establish a credit score as a criterion for accepting new customers. In most cases, you won’t even pass a credit history check.
Therefore, we say that this is the most democratic card of all. After all, it accepts candidates with any rank. Even those who have never used credit services and have no history or credit score.
On the other hand, the issuers of this type of card can establish income criteria and level of indebtedness.
How to use a secured credit card to improve your credit score
Well, a secured credit card can be a ladder to a much more comfortable financial life for many people. After all, this card allows you to improve your credit history and score.
Thus, in the future, you will be able to count on loans with better conditions and even credit cards with more advantages. In fact, it will positively impact your finances and even your quality of life.
However, how to use a card to have better credit? See the tips below:
Use with moderation
The percentage of your credit limit utilization also influences your credit score. The ideal is to use less than 30% of the amount that is available to you. Strive to respect this boundary.
Pay on time
Commit to paying your entire card balance on time. This is the best way to redeem or build good credit. In some cases, for this goal to be achieved, you will need to reduce expenses. However, your effort will be worth it.
Start enjoying the benefits of your credit score now
In some cases, you can check your credit score for free. When you notice improvement, contact your card administrator. You can request that your secured card be converted to an unsecured card.
Is a secured credit card the best option for you?
To be honest, secured credit cards aren’t and shouldn’t be anyone’s first choice. After all, many credit cards have excellent advantages on the market.
However, this card is indicated for those who feel they need to build their credit and do not have other tools.
If so, look for a good secure card and build your path. If you need a tip, check out the PREMIER Bankcard® Secured card. This is one of the few cards that offers a $5,000 credit limit.
Access the post below and learn more about this credit product:
About the author / José Gonçalo
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