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What Are the Best Secured Cards for Rebuilding Credit?

When people want to rebuild their credit they usually look for personal loans to pay off debt or consolidate existing credit card balances. They may also consider using a credit repair service, or a credit reporting services. One credit repair route that they should consider carefully, however, is secured credit cards. Secured cards allow holders to boost their credit score and enjoy the purchasing power a real credit card. So, what are the best secured credit cards for rebuilding your credit of 2020?

The Best Secured Credit Cards for Repairing Your Credit Score

One of the most crucial aspects of rebuilding credit is creating a history of on-time payments and responsible use of credit products. While many might shy away from them, secured credit cards are an excellent option for those looking to bounce back from bankruptcy, default, or any other credit issues.

What Makes a Good Secured Credit Card?

When looking for a secured credit card for rebuilding credit, there are certain things to consider. First, note the minimum deposit. This deposit is what makes a secured card “secured.” The minimum deposit varies significantly and can make the difference between a good option or a bad one. Look for a secured card with a minimum deposit of $200. This deposit level makes the card much more affordable for those with limited access to funds.

Here’s what to look for in a secured card:

  • Modest annual fee (lower than $50)
  • Low minimum deposit ($200 is a reasonable minimum)
  • A purchase APR below the national average (lower than 18% APR)
  • Regular reporting to the major credit bureaus: Experian, Equifax, and TransUnion

The Best Secured Credit Cards of 2020

Paying your statement valance in full each month is one of the best ways to repair a bad credit score quickly.  Sometimes, however, you can’t pay your entire credit card statement. When this scenario arises, make sure you have a secured card that offers the versatility to carry a balance from month-to-month.

First Progress Platinum Prestige Mastercard® Secured Card

The First Progress Platinum Prestige is one of the best credit cards for carrying a balance. The card, which features a modest $49 annual fee, has an impressive variable-rate APR of 9.99%. Most secured cards have an interest rate double that figure, making the First Progress Platinum Prestige an excellent option to consider.

First Progress Platinum Prestige Mastercard® Secured Credit Card

No Credit History or Minimum Credit Score Required

First Progress Platinum Prestige Mastercard® Secured Credit Card
  • Regular Purchase APR 9.99% variable based on the Prime Rate
  • Cash Advance APR 18.99% variable based on the Prime Rate
  • Annual Fee $49
  • Credit Needed Poor , No Credit Required
  • Processing Network Mastercard
Best Benefits
  • No Credit History or Minimum Credit Score Required for Approval
  • Quick and Complete Online Application
  • Full-Feature Platinum Mastercard® Secured Credit Card
  • Monthly Reporting to all 3 Major Credit Bureaus to Establish Credit History
  • 24/7 Online Access to Your Account
Rates & Fees
  • Regular Purchase APR: 9.99% variable based on the Prime Rate
  • Cash Advance APR: 18.99% variable based on the Prime Rate
  • Cash Advance Transaction Fee: Either $10 or 3% of the amount of each cash advance, whichever is greater
  • Annual Fee: $49
  • Foreign Transaction Fee: 3% of the transaction amount
  • Late Payment Penalty Fee: Up to $40
  • Return Payment Penalty Fee: Up to $29
  • Minimum Deposit Required: $200

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Applied Bank Secured Visa® Gold Preferred® Card

The Applied Bank Gold Preferred Secured Visa offers the same low APR as the First Progress Platinum Prestige and a similar annual fee ($48 per year). Thanks to regular reporting to all the major credit bureaus, the Applied Bank Card is an ideal companion for those looking to build credit – but carry a small balance.

Applied Bank Secured Visa® Gold Preferred® Card

No Credit Check or Minimum Credit Score Required

Applied Bank Secured Visa® Gold Preferred® Card
  • Regular Purchase APR 9.99%
  • Cash Advance APR 9.99%
  • Annual Fee $48
  • Credit Needed Poor , No Credit Required
  • Processing Network Visa
Best Benefits
  • Better than Prepaid...Go with a Secured Card! Load One Time - Keep On Using
  • Absolutely No Credit Check or Minimum Credit Score Required
  • Automatic Reporting to All Three National Credit Bureaus
  • 9.99% Low Fixed APR – Your Rate Won’t Go Up Even if You Are Late
  • Activate Today with a $200 Minimum Deposit – Maximum $1,000. Increase Your Credit Limit up to $5,000 by Adding Additional Deposits Anytime
Rates & Fees
  • Regular Purchase APR: 9.99%
  • Cash Advance APR: 9.99%
  • Cash Advance Transaction Fee: Either $5 or 5% of the amount of each cash advance, whichever is greater
  • Annual Fee: $48
  • Foreign Transaction Fee: 3% of the transaction amount in U.S. dollars
  • Late Payment Penalty Fee: Up to $38
  • Return Payment Penalty Fee: Up to $38
  • Minimum Deposit Required: $200
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Assent Platinum 0% Intro Rate Mastercard® Secured Card

While the Assent Platinum Mastercard has a slightly higher interest rate than the First progress Prestige and Applied Bank Gold Preferred cards, at 12.99%, it is also one of the only secured credit cards that feature 0% intro APR on purchases.

New accounts enjoy six months of 0% introductory APR on purchases. For those planning on making a purchase they want to pay down over time, the $49 annual fee of the Assent Platinum Mastercard is more than worth the cost.

Assent Platinum 0% Intro Rate Mastercard® Secured Credit Card

Enjoy 0% APR on Purchases for Six Months!

Assent Platinum 0% Intro Rate Mastercard® Secured Credit Card
  • Regular Purchase APR 12.99% variable based on the Prime Rate
  • Cash Advance APR 18.99% variable based on the Prime Rate
  • Annual Fee $49
  • Credit Needed Poor , No Credit Required
  • Intro Purchase APR 0% for 6 months from account opening date
  • Processing Network Mastercard
Best Benefits
  • Full-Feature Platinum Mastercard* Secured Credit Card
  • Monthly Reporting to all 3 Major Credit Bureaus to Establish Credit History
  • Good for Car Rental, Hotels: Anywhere Credit Cards Are Accepted!
  • 24/7 Online Access to Your Account
  • Credit Line Secured by Your Fully-Refundable Deposit of $200 – $2,000 Submitted with Application
Rates & Fees
  • Intro Purchase APR: 0% for 6 months from account opening date
  • Regular Purchase APR: 12.99% variable based on the Prime Rate
  • Cash Advance APR: 18.99% variable based on the Prime Rate
  • Cash Advance Transaction Fee: Either $10 or 3% of the amount of each cash advance, whichever is greater
  • Annual Fee: $49
  • Foreign Transaction Fee: 3% of the transaction amount in U.S. dollars
  • Late Payment Penalty Fee: Up to $40
  • Return Payment Penalty Fee: Up to $29
  • Minimum Deposit Required: $200

First Progress Platinum Select Mastercard® Secured Card

First Progress also offers a secured credit card with a similar APR to the Assent Card. The First Progress Platinum Select Mastercard offers features a variable 13.99% APR on purchases and a lower $39 annual fee.

The very reasonable APR and annual fee make this card perfect for those who plan on paying their bills fully each month but want the versatility to carry a balance if needed. The Platinum Select is a well-rounded secured card that appeals to anyone who wants to repair their credit.

First Progress Platinum Select Mastercard® Secured Credit Card

No Credit History or Minimum Credit Score Required

First Progress Platinum Select Mastercard® Secured Credit Card
  • Regular Purchase APR 13.99% variable based on the Prime Rate
  • Cash Advance APR 19.99% variable based on the Prime Rate
  • Annual Fee $39
  • Credit Needed Poor , No Credit Required
  • Processing Network Mastercard
Best Benefits
  • No Credit History or Minimum Credit Score Required for Approval
  • Quick and Complete Online Application
  • Full-Feature Platinum Mastercard® Secured Credit Card
  • Monthly Reporting to all 3 Major Credit Bureaus to Establish Credit History
  • 24/7 Online Access to Your Account
Rates & Fees
  • Regular Purchase APR: 13.99% variable based on the Prime Rate
  • Cash Advance APR: 19.99% variable based on the Prime Rate
  • Cash Advance Transaction Fee: Either $10 or 3% of the amount of each cash advance, whichever is greater
  • Annual Fee: $39
  • Foreign Transaction Fee: 3% of the transaction amount
  • Late Payment Penalty Fee: Up to $40
  • Return Payment Penalty Fee: Up to $29
  • Minimum Deposit Required: $200

The Best Secured Card Without a Credit Check

Carrying a balance is not advisable for those trying to rebuild their credit score. And, while paying interest and keeping a balance is a reality for many people, if you do not have to – don’t. Those who will pay their statement balance in full each month can pay less attention to the APR, and more to the annual fee.

OpenSky® Secured Visa® Credit Card

The OpenSky® Secured Visa® Credit Card is one of the most popular secured cards on the market – and it’s easy to see why. The card features an annual fee of $35 and the usual purchasing power and security that comes from a full-fledged Visa credit card.

The real value of the OpenSky Secured, however, comes from the fact that there is no credit check required to apply. No credit check means applying for the card will not hurt your credit score. This feature lets you build credit quickly – and without any initial harm to your credit score.

OpenSky® Secured Visa®

No Credit Check to Apply

OpenSky® Secured Visa®
  • Regular Purchase APR 17.39% variable based on the Prime Rate
  • Cash Advance APR 17.39% variable based on the Prime Rate
  • Annual Fee $35
  • Credit Needed Poor , No Credit Required
  • Processing Network Visa
Best Benefits
  • Build credit with on-time payments
  • Reports to the three leading credit bureaus
  • Credit limist between $200 and $3,000
  • Visa benefits and protections
Rates & Fees
  • Regular Purchase APR: 17.39% variable based on the Prime Rate
  • Cash Advance APR: 17.39% variable based on the Prime Rate
  • Cash Advance Transaction Fee: Either $6 or 5% of the amount of each cash advance, whichever is greater.
  • Annual Fee: $35
  • Foreign Transaction Fee: 3% of each transaction in U.S. dollars
  • Late Payment Penalty Fee: Up to $38
  • Return Payment Penalty Fee: Up to $25
  • Minimum Deposit Required: $200
Credit Card Deals
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  • Complimentary EZ Mini Crunchies (60g) when you spend S$120 - Offer Expires on December 31, 2020 - See Details
  • 10% off museum entry - Offer Expires on December 31, 2020 - See Details
  • Save up to 55% on London theater tickets - Offer Expires on December 31, 2020 - See Details
  • Save an extra 10% on Tower of London access tickets - Offer Expires on December 31, 2020 - See Details
  • Save 5% with Alamo® at participating locations - Offer Expires on December 31, 2020 - See Details
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Conclusion

Finding the ideal secured card to rebuild your credit can be challenging but paying attention to the tips provided can increase your chances significantly. Always take note of the annual fee, the minimum deposit, and the perks the card offers. For those who still need to carry a balance, prioritize the APR, and stick with a card that provides the lowest possible interest rates. For those who want to protect their credit score, a card like the OpenSky Visa Secured does not require a credit check. And for those in between, there is a great selection of credit card offers on our best secured credit cards listings page.

Photo by Moritz Mentges on Unsplash
About: Cory
Cory Santos

Cory is BestCards.com's "Jack of all trades" and resident rewards expert, covering all facets of the points game – especially travel, hotels, and airlines. In addition to credit cards, Cory finds that jogging, cats, and memes are essential parts of a balanced day.