Secured Credit Card?

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Secured Credit Card?

Postby Southerngirl92 » Sun Jul 12, 2015 11:46 am

I am looking to apply for a secured credit card but I have no idea what I'm doing. :confused:

I'm 23 years old, currently receive supplemental security income every month (lots of medical problems) I don't have a job because of my health issues at this time so that is my only source of income right now. Along and along I've saved up about $500 and I want to put it towards a secured credit card so I can try to make a better life for myself after I can get my health issues fixed and get a job/go back to school.

I don't have any credit at all, and I realize that without a job, a secured credit card is my only option. There is a local credit union in my town that has a Visa secured card with 14.90% APR, is this good? I really have no idea. I've also been reading about the Capital One secured card, apparently a lot of people really like that one, but I would like to have a card with an actual bank/CU, that I can go to and make a relationship with, so that in the future if I need to get a car loan, mortgage, etc. I've built a relationship there. If that makes sense. What would you do if you were me?

I really have no idea what I'm doing and some helpful advice would be greatly appreciated. Thanks so much!

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Re: Secured Credit Card?

Postby Vermonster » Sun Jul 12, 2015 5:45 pm

It actually sounds like you're on the right path. A local CU is the best place to be.

A secured card at 14% is very good. Most credit cards are going to be at least that if not higher for someone with no history. BUT, it really shouldn't matter because you should never carry a balance. You should always pay the full amount each month.

After you get your card I would sign up for Credit Karma. It has a lot of decent information and you get a weekly review of your credit report. It can really help keep you on top of everything if you check it on a weekly basis.
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Re: Secured Credit Card?

Postby Kevin86475391 » Thu Jul 16, 2015 8:08 pm

The credit union secured card rate does sound good! I'll definitely echo Vermonster's comments though: pay in full every month and try to avoid even experiencing interest charges! This will also be much better for your utilization (the amount you owe to the amount you can borrow), which is one of the biggest factors in your credit score. So for example if you get a secured card with the $500 limit you talked about make sure to pay in full every month to avoid interest charges, but also remember to keep your spending under about $150, which would be a 30% utilization ($150/$500 = .30 or 30%) and ideally you'll want to keep it under about $50 to stay below 10% utilization. I know that sounds really restrictive, but it's much better for your credit and eventually when you have built up credit you can apply for an unsecured card with a higher limit.

Also, regarding establishing a relationship with a physical bank...that's certainly possible with Capital One. They have LOTS of physical banks. Although definitely a credit union is more likely to be willing to work with you. So that's probably still the better option.

Best of luck!

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Re: Secured Credit Card?

Postby rockyrock » Mon Jul 27, 2015 8:19 am

I echo what previous two comments about the CU. The first time I destroyed my credit I rebuilt it with a Cap 1 secured card. I was never a fan of Cap 1 and that carries true to today. In fact I recently closed that secured card after >10 years because Cap 1 refused to work with me on the annual fee. I hated to close it because it was my oldest account but I wasn't going to keep paying for a card I never used.

Don't be so sure about not being able to get a standard credit card either. My mom is on SSI and was able to get a BofA credit card several years back.

Go to and use their Card Match tool to see what it recommends. It's not a guarantee but I have had good results in the past.

Good luck and remember YMMV ;)
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