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Looking for a Secured Credit Card? Here Are Top Picks to Consider

When looking for a secured credit card, you’ll likely notice they aren’t very well-known for their variety. These offers tend to involve the same general features: security deposits used as collateral, high APRs, and low credit requirements.  

That’s because many issuers throw one secured card into their mix of low rate and rewards offers, almost as a sort of afterthoughtAfter all, secured cards are meant to be stepping stones toward their more popular unsecured counterparts. 

Other issuers, however, place a lot more emphasis on these credit-building cards by offering more than one option. This gives consumers the ability to find a secured credit card that best fits their circumstancesNot all consumers in need of credit building have the same financial goals and habits, so choosing the right card is essential.  

Who Offers the Best Secured Credit Cards?

Some secured cards are better suited for those with little-to-no prior credit history, while others help repair past credit mistakes. Two underrated issuers who seem to understand this well are First Progress and Green Dot. Both have multiple secured options with varying features and interest rates. Below we’ll explore what each of these issuers has to offer those looking for a secured credit card. 

First Progress Credit Cards

If you’re looking for a secured credit card to build credit, First Progress could be the way to go. This lender works with Synovus Bank to issue not just one, but three cards that require no prior credit history or minimum score to qualify. Since credit isn’t really a factor, the main differences that help determine which you should apply for are the interest rates and fees.  

The Platinum Elite Mastercard Secured Credit Card is the most like your average secured card, offering the highest APR of the three, but also the lowest annual fee. For those who believe they’ll consistently pay off their entire monthly balance, this could be the most low-cost option.  

First Progress Platinum Elite Mastercard® Secured Credit Card

No Credit History or Minimum Credit Score Required

First Progress Platinum Elite Mastercard® Secured Credit Card
  • Regular Purchase APR 19.99% variable based on the Prime Rate
  • Cash Advance APR 24.99% variable based on the Prime Rate
  • Annual Fee $29
  • 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
  • 24/7 Online Access to Your Account
Rates & Fees
  • Regular Purchase APR: 19.99% variable based on the Prime Rate
  • Cash Advance APR: 24.99% 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: $29
  • 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

Add cards to start comparing.

  

On the other hand, the Platinum Prestige sits on the other end of the spectrum. This First Progress secured credit card boasts an APR much lower than you would get from other secured offers. The trade-off, of course, is a higher annual fee. Those who don’t want to risk accruing substantial interest if they need to carry a balance may find this larger fee well worth it in the long run.  

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

If you’re unsure which of these categories you might fall into, First Progress offers another alternative. The Platinum Select seems to be a happy middle ground between the two  both an interest rate and annual fee that’s not too high for that “just right” fit. 

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

Green Dot Credit Cards

If those options aren’t enough, you’ll also find three versions of the Green Dot secured credit card. Unlike the First Progress cards, these have a few more differences between them to compare. One standout feature that all share is their fixed interest rates – once you apply, what you see it what you get. 

With the Green Dot Visa® Secured Credit Card, no credit check is required. While this is a plus for those with no credit history, it’s arguably even more beneficial to those trying to repair their credit. Hard credit checks can bring down an already low score. On the other hand, it doesn’t offer the same level of perks (or lower interest rates) as its sister cards. 

Green Dot Visa® Secured Credit Card

Good Credit and Bank Account Not Required

Green Dot Visa® Secured Credit Card
  • Regular Purchase APR 19.99%
  • Cash Advance APR 19.99%
  • Annual Fee $39
  • Credit Needed Poor , No Credit Required
  • Processing Network Visa
Best Benefits
  • Good credit or bank account not required
  • Your application will not impact your credit score
  • Initial security deposit can be as low as $200
  • Raise your credit score with responsible card use
  • See additional Green Dot Visa® Secured Credit Card details
Rates & Fees
  • Regular Purchase APR: 19.99%
  • Cash Advance APR: 19.99%
  • Cash Advance Transaction Fee: Either $5 or 5% of the amount of each cash advance, whichever is greater
  • Annual Fee: $39
  • Foreign Transaction Fee: 3% of each transaction in U.S. dollars
  • Late Payment Penalty Fee: Up to $27
  • Return Payment Penalty Fee: Up to $27
  • Minimum Deposit Required: $200

The Green Dot primor® Secured Visa Classic Card is the next step up. Not only does this card offer a better interest rate; it also allows you to earn interest on your security deposit. You’ll need to undergo a credit check in order to help determine your credit limit, though this can also be a plus. Your credit may qualify you for a higher limit even if you can only afford the minimum required security deposit. 

Green Dot primor® Secured Visa® Classic Card

Credit Limits From $200 to $5,000

Green Dot primor® Secured Visa® Classic Card
  • Regular Purchase APR 13.99%
  • Cash Advance APR 18.99%
  • Annual Fee $39
  • Credit Needed Poor , No Credit Required
  • Processing Network Visa
Best Benefits
  • Credit lines available from $200 to $5,000! Low fixed 13.99% interest rate on purchases - with no penalty rate!
  • No minimum credit score requirements! We invite all credit types to apply! No processing or application fees!
  • Helps strengthen your credit with responsible card use. Reports to three national bureaus
  • Fast, easy application process. Choose your credit line and open your Personal Savings Deposit Account to secure your line
  • See additional Green Dot primor® Visa® Classic Secured Credit Card details
Rates & Fees
  • Regular Purchase APR: 13.99%
  • Cash Advance APR: 18.99%
  • Cash Advance Transaction Fee: Either $5 or 5% of the amount of each cash advance, whichever is greater
  • Annual Fee: $39
  • Foreign Transaction Fee: 3% of each transaction in U.S. dollars
  • Late Payment Penalty Fee: Up to $29
  • Return Payment Penalty Fee: Up to $29
  • Minimum Deposit Required: $200

Beyond the Classic lies the Green Dot primor® Secured Visa Gold Card. This offer has many of the same benefits, but is a little harder to apply for. This means it may not be the best of the three secured credit cards for bad creditHowever, those who are able to qualify can receive the lowest interest rate and maximize that fixed APR when carrying a balance.  

Green Dot primor® Secured Visa® Gold Card

Earn Interest on Your Security Deposit

Green Dot primor® Secured Visa® Gold Card
  • Regular Purchase APR 9.99%
  • Cash Advance APR 18.99%
  • Annual Fee $49
  • Credit Needed Poor , No Credit Required
  • Processing Network Visa
Best Benefits
  • Credit lines available from $200 to $5,000! Super Low Fixed 9.99% interest rate on purchases - with no penalty rate!
  • No minimum credit score requirements! We invite all credit types to apply! No processing or application fees!
  • Helps strengthen your credit with responsible card use. Reports to three national bureaus
  • Fast, easy application process. Choose your credit line and open your Personal Savings Deposit Account to secure your line
  • See additional Green Dot primor® Visa® Gold Secured Credit Card details
Rates & Fees
  • Regular Purchase APR: 9.99%
  • Cash Advance APR: 18.99%
  • Cash Advance Transaction Fee: Either $5 or 5% of the amount of each cash advance, whichever is greater
  • Annual Fee: $49
  • Foreign Transaction Fee: 3% of each transaction in U.S. dollars
  • Late Payment Penalty Fee: Up to $29
  • Return Payment Penalty Fee: Up to $29
  • Minimum Deposit Required: $200
About: Leesa

Leesa is a credit card explorer for BestCards.com. While not spelunking for APRs and hidden fees, she's most likely listening to a podcast or working on a superfluous DIY project.