| Last updated on February 14th, 2024
Merrick Bank Secured Credit Card
Merrick Bank Secured Credit Card
- 22.70% Variable Regular Purchase APR
- 27.70% Variable Cash Advance APR
At a Glance
The Merrick Bank Secured Credit Card is an effective tool for boosting your credit score. The card features a very competitive APR on purchases, a modest annual fee of $36, and the chance at credit limit increases – without the need for any additional cash deposits.
- Best Benefits
- Rates & Fees
- Why Should You Apply?
- Choose your own credit line based on how much money you want to put down as a security deposit
- Initial deposits can be from $200 to $3,000. You can increase your credit line at any time by adding additional money to your security deposit, up to $3,000
- After 9 months, we review your account for a credit line increase. No additional deposit required!
- Secured Credit Cards are great for people looking to build or rebuild credit and are available to people with all kinds of credit backgrounds
- Unlike a debit card or a pre-paid card, it helps build your credit history. We report your payment history to all three major credit-reporting agencies
- Get your FICO® Credit Score for free each month
- Fraud coverage if your card is lost or stolen. Access your account 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. Get help staying on track with available Auto Pay and account alerts
- Card issued by Merrick Bank, Member FDIC
- Regular Purchase APR: 22.70% Variable
- Cash Advance APR: 27.70% Variable
- Cash Advance Transaction Fee: Either $10 or 4% of the amount of each cash advance, whichever is greater
- Annual Fee: $36 for first year. Billed $3 per month thereafter
- Foreign Transaction Fee: 2% of the transaction amount in U.S. dollars
- Late Payment Penalty Fee: Up to $40
- Return Payment Penalty Fee: Up to $40
- Minimum Deposit Required: $200
- You're looking to establish credit for the first time
- You have credit problems and need to bounce back with a secured card
- You want the chance of additional credit lines with an extra deposit
In-Depth Review: Merrick Bank Secured Credit Card
The Merrick Bank Secured credit card is a basic secured credit card that provides a solid platform for boosting your credit score.
How to Get the Card
The Merrick Bank secured credit card is designed to help individuals with poor or no credit history build their credit. By using this card responsibly, you can demonstrate your ability to manage credit and become eligible for better financial opportunities in the future.
Security Deposit Requirements
Merrick’s secured card is like other options because it has fairly low minimum deposit requirements. Applicants can open a new account with as little as $200, with $3,000 the top-end initial credit limit.
While the basic secure card differs from the Merrick Bank Double Your Line Secured Credit Card, that doesn’t mean cardholders can’t receive a credit line increase.
Secured Credit Cardholders must fund any additional line increases for the first year. However, after that period, Merrick Bank may automatically increase credit lines for cardholders – with no additional deposit requirements.
Credit Building Benefits
Flexible Credit Limits
As mentioned, the Merrick Bank secured credit card offers credit limits ranging from $200 to $3,000, depending on the amount of your security deposit. This flexibility allows you to choose a credit limit that suits your needs and financial capabilities.
Regular Reporting to the Major Credit Bureaus
Secured credit cards are one of the best ways to rebuild or establish credit for the first time quickly. When using the Merrick Secured credit card to make small purchases and pay the full monthly balance, their credit score will rise steadily.
Because Merrick Bank reports to the major credit bureaus – Experian, Equifax, and TransUnion – every month, cardholders can raise their score with a string of on-time payments and low credit usage.
Interest rates with Merrick Bank secured cards are very competitive – and the Secured credit card from Merrick Bank is no different. While Merrick doesn’t advertise their rates publicly (instead offering terms before submitting an application), those interest rates are slightly lower than the national average for a secured card.
Merrick Bank does not allow cardholders to make balance transfers but does allow cash advances. These advances act in the way of an ATM withdrawal – you use the card at an ATM and withdraw funds (up to a set limit that is a portion of your overall credit line).
Other Card Benefits
Other notable features of the Merrick Bank Secured credit card include:
|No account set-up fees
|No over-the-limit fees
|Online payment options
|Online account management tools
|Free FICO Score every month
|Mastercard features and benefits
Cardholders will enjoy many benefits that are standard on all cards from Merrick Bank, with the Secured Card being no exception despite being a secure credit line. Each month, account holders get an updated FICO® credit score issued online for free and an automatic credit line review – no need to call.
Enjoy flexible payment options – via check, phone, or online – to help make your payments on time each month, the easiest way to build and repair a damaged credit score. Additionally, cardholders will benefit from free online and mobile account access, with account alerts and a paperless statement option.
Free financial education is available through the Merrick Bank website, providing tips on budgeting and managing your money.
Perhaps best of all, you will not be liable for unauthorized charges thanks to Zero Fraud Liability and Mastercard Platinum benefits. These features include:
|Zero Liability Protection
|Mastercard Global Services
|ID Theft Protection
|First Progress Platinum Elite
|OpenSky® Secured Visa®
|Merrick Secured Card
Tips for Using the Merrick Bank Secured Credit Card Effectively
- Pay on Time: Paying on time is crucial for building credit. Late payments can hurt your credit score and may incur additional fees. Set up automatic payments or reminders to ensure you never miss a due date.
- Keep Your Utilization Low: Credit utilization refers to the percentage of your credit limit that you are using. To maintain a healthy credit score, it is recommended to keep your utilization below 30%. For example, if your credit limit is $1,000, keep your balance below $300.
- Avoid Cash Advances: While the Merrick Bank secured credit card allows cash advances, it is advisable to avoid them if possible. Cash advances often come with high interest rates and fees that can quickly accumulate and put you in a cycle of debt.
- Monitor Your Credit: Regularly checking your credit reports can help you track your progress and identify any errors or discrepancies. You are entitled to a free credit report from each of the three major credit bureaus once a year. Take advantage of this opportunity to ensure the information is accurate.
- Upgrade to an Unsecured Card: The ultimate goal of using a secured credit card is establishing a positive credit history and eventually qualifying for an unsecured credit card. Merrick Bank offers the opportunity to upgrade to an unsecured card after demonstrating responsible credit usage. This can provide you with more flexibility and benefits in the future.
What We Like About the Merrick Bank Secured Credit Card
The Merrick Bank secured credit card offers a range of features and benefits that make it an attractive option for individuals looking to build or rebuild their credit. Here are some key highlights:
- Flexible credit limits that can be customized to your needs.
- Reporting to all three major credit bureaus, helping you establish or rebuild your credit history.
- The opportunity for gradual credit limit increases based on your responsible credit usage.
- Convenient online account management tools for easy access and control.
- The option to receive a security deposit refund upon closing your account with no outstanding balance.
Things to Consider
While the Merrick Bank secured credit card has its advantages, it’s important to consider the following factors before applying:
- Annual fees and other associated costs.
- The need for a security deposit, which may tie up your funds temporarily.
- The interest rate charged on balances carried over from month to month.
- The potential impact on your credit score if you fail to make timely payments or misuse the card.
- The availability of alternative secured credit card options that may better suit your specific needs.
Before deciding, take the time to evaluate your financial situation and goals carefully. Compare the Merrick Bank secured credit card with other available options, considering factors such as fees, credit reporting, and credit limit flexibility. This will help you make an informed choice that aligns with your needs and objectives.
- Merrick Bank uses the Experian credit score when evaluating a credit card application.
- Yes. Merrick reports regularly to all three credit bureaus: Experian, Equifax, and TransUnion.
- Yes. The Secured credit card from Merrick Bank features a $36 annual fee, billed at $3 per month.
Merrick Bank credit, debit, and banking products are available in all 50 U.S. states plus the District of Columbia (DC).
Should You Apply for the Merrick Bank Secured Credit Card?
Using a secured card to rebuild your credit is a tried-and-tested way to make the jump from a poor credit score to good credit. The Merrick Bank Secured Credit Card is an enticing way to build credit and take the first step towards an unsecured card at the same time.
While the Merrick Bank Secured differs from the Double Your Line Secured Card, that’s not a bad thing. The basic secured card’s initial deposit requirements are much more flexible to allow users to set a credit limit that works for them. And, with a good track record of paying on-time, Merrick may raise that credit limit after year one – with no additional deposit required.
The card does come with an annual fee, but it is very reasonable. Most secured credit cards feature a fee, with the average cost being around $50 per year. And, since the fee is charged monthly after year one, it doesn’t cause as much of an impact on your overall credit limit as you might expect.
However, keep in mind that the full annual fee is charged once opening the account, so a $200 credit limit would actually be $164 when getting the card.
Overall, the Merrick Bank Secured credit card hits many the right notes when it comes to credit repair credit card. It may not offer points or cash back, but the chance at additional, unsecured credit with sound financial habits is a reward in itself.
Related Article: What Are the Easiest Credit Cards for Bad Credit to Get?
Browse Other Card Offers:
Editorial Disclosure – The opinions expressed on BestCards.com's reviews, articles, and all other content on or relating to the website are solely those of the content’s author(s). These opinions do not reflect those of any card issuer or financial institution, and editorial content on our site has not been reviewed or approved by these entities unless noted otherwise. Further, BestCards.com lists credit card offers that are frequently updated with information believed to be accurate to the best of our team's knowledge. However, please review the information provided directly by the credit card issuer or related financial institution for full details.