What Are the Best Unsecured Cards for Rebuilding Credit?

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Last updated on March 10th, 2023

Finding the perfect credit card is tough at the best of time, so when your credit is damaged, it can seem almost impossible. One of the best ways to fix your credit is through an unsecured credit card. Unsecured cards are what people usually think of when imagining a credit card.  These types of cards don’t need a security deposit, instead offering a line of credit with no initial cost to the applicant. But what are the best unsecured credit cards for bad credit, and how do they help you rebuild your credit score?

The Best Unsecured Cards for Repairing You Credit Score

When investigating credit cards for building credit, the first consideration should be just how low is your credit score? Knowing whether you have a bad credit score or a fair credit score can significantly alter the credit cards available to you.

“Guaranteed Approval” Credit Cards for Bad Credit

Those with badly impacted credit will struggle to get a credit card without needing a deposit. Fortunately, there are a few “second chance” credit cards that offer the ability to rebuild credit and don’t require a deposit, meaning they are not secured cards.

merit platinum horizon
Bad Credit, No Credit? No Problem!
  • Unsecured, $750 Line of Credit
  • Reports to Major Credit Bureau
  • Use for Purchases at the Horizon Outlet
☆ Quick Application
☆ No Employment or Credit Check
☆ Build Credit w/ On-Time Payments

While there is no such thing as a “guaranteed approval” unsecured credit card, the Merit Platinum Card is as close as it comes to it. This card offers a $750 unsecured line of credit to the Horizon Outlet – an online shopping portal. The shop provides an impressive list of products, meaning the cards provide excellent value.

What makes this card so useful, however, is that it regularly reports activity to one of the three major credit bureaus: Experian, Equifax, ad TransUnion. With on-time payments, cardholders can quickly build a positive credit history and raise their score. This, in turn, can lead to better credit card options in the future.

Get a Pre-Approval and the Chance to Increase Your Credit Line

Part of boosting a credit score is increasing the amount of available credit. Many unsecured credit cards for rebuilding credit offer smaller credit limits with the chance to receive an increase with demonstrated financial responsibility. This requires paying on time and not receiving any penalty fees.

One of the most popular credit card offers in this category is the Surge® Platinum Mastercard® from Celtic Bank. The card comes with an initial credit limit that ranges from $300 to $1,000, which Celtic Bank might increase should you make your payments on time for the first six months. Plus, new Surgecardholders enjoy no monthly maintenance fees for the first year.

In addition, the card issuer performs automatic account reviews free of charge. Doing so can result in a credit limit increase, thereby boosting your purchasing power and your available credit – two important factors in calculating your credit score.

surge secured mastercard
All Credit Types Welcome to Apply
  • See if you’re Pre-Qualified with no impact to your credit score
  • Monthly reporting to the three major credit bureaus
  • Zero Fraud Liability
☆ Fast Online Application
☆ Up to $1,000 credit limit doubles up to $2,000!
☆ Build Credit with Mastercard
☆ Free access to your VantageScore

Another popular option in unsecured credit cards for rebuilding credit category is the Indigo® Platinum Mastercard®. The card features a fixed APR on purchases, a low foreign transaction fee, and regular reporting to the major credit bureaus. In time, using the card responsibly can even result in a credit line increase.

Other Options Like Indigo and Reflex

The Merrick Bank Double Your Line® Secured Mastercard® is another great option for anyone looking to build credit and making the jump to unsecured credit. Sure it isn’t an unsecured credit card, but the secured card from Merrick offers the chance to leap from secured to unsecured thanks to its Double Your Line® feature. 

Double your $200 credit line by making at least your minimum payment on time each month for the first seven months your account is open. With responsible use and no monthly maintenance fees for the first year (the annual fee is billed at $3/month after year one), the card is an excellent starter, rebounder, or just plain everyday credit card.

merrick bank double your line secured 224x141
Build Credit w/ Double Your Limit!
  • See If You Are Pre-Approved Within Minutes
  • Credit lines range from $500-$1,350 which double to $1,000-$2,700 after your account qualifies
☆ 2X Your Limit with 7 On Time Payments
☆ No security deposit required
☆ 100% U.S.-based customer service
☆ FICO® Credit Score for free each month

Summing It Up

Finding an unsecured credit card to rebuild your credit can be tough, but there are plenty of great options available. By making on-time payments and focusing on your goal to rebuild your credit score, you can quickly boost your score – and get a credit limit increase.

Related Article: What Are the Easiest Credit Cards for Bad Credit to Get?

Photo by Dylan Gillis on Unsplash

About: Cory
Cory Santos

Cory is BestCards.com's "Jack of all trades" and resident credit expert, covering all facets of the credit card space. Cory holds academic degrees in both the U.S. and U.K. In addition to credit cards, Cory finds that jogging, cats, and memes are essential parts of a balanced day.

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BestCards is an independent, Florida-based credit card comparison platform. Many of the card offers that appear on this site are from companies from which BestCards receives compensation. This compensation may impact how and where products appear on this site (including, for example, the order in which they appear). BestCards does not include all card companies or all card offers available in the marketplace.

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