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Last updated on September 13th, 2021
Merrick Bank Secured Visa® from Merrick Bank
Great for People Looking to Build or Rebuild Credit
- 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. As you pay your bill every month, we report to all three major credit-reporting agencies
- Get 100% U.S.-based customer service & 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 Auto Pay and account alerts.
- Card issued by Merrick Bank, Member FDIC
- Regular Purchase APR: 17.45% variable based on the Prime Rate
- Cash Advance APR: 22.45% variable based on the Prime Rate
- 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
At a Glance
The Merrick Bank Secured Visa® 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.
Ideal for Those Who:
- Are looking to establish credit for the first time
- Have credit problems and need to bounce back with a secured card
- Want the chance of additional credit lines with an extra deposit
Merrick Bank Secured Visa® Credit Card Review
The Merrick Bank Secured Visa is a basic secured credit card that provides a solid platform for boosting your credit score.
Security Deposit Requirements
Merrick’s secured card is like other options in that 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 is different from the Merrick Bank Double Your Line Secured Visa, that doesn’t mean cardholders can’t receive a credit line increase. The Double Your Line Card offers the chance to double the $200 credit limit ($400 total) after paying at least the minimum balance due for the first seven consecutive months. The $200 additional credit line requires no extra deposit.
Secured Visa® Credit Cardholders, on the other hand, must fund any additional line increases for the first year. However, after that period, Merrick Bank may increase credit lines for cardholders automatically – with no additional deposit requirements.
Regular Reporting to the Major Credit Bureaus
Secured credit cards are one of the best ways to quickly rebuild credit – or establish credit for the first time. When using the Merrick Secured Visa® to make small purchases and pay the full balance each month, 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 Visa® 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 – currently at 18%.
Merrick Bank does not allow cardholders to make balance transfers, but odes 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). The APR for cash advances is around 22.5%.
Other Card Features
Other notable features with the Merrick Bank Secured Visa include:
- No account set-up fees
- $36 annual fee (billed as $3 per month after the first year)
- No over-the-limit fees
- Online account management tools, including a handy app (available for both iOS and Android)
Cardholders will enjoy a plethora of benefits that are standard on all cards from Merrick Bank, with the Secured Visa Card being no exception despite being a secured credit line. Each month, account holders get an updated FICO® credit score issued online for free, as well as 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 how to budget and manage your money. Perhaps best of all, you will not be liable for unauthorized charges thanks to Visa® Zero Liability!
Should You Apply for the Merrick Bank Secured Visa® 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 Visa® 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 Visa® 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 Visa 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?
For more information on secured credit cards, visit our Comprehensive Secured Card Reference Page, featuring the best-secured card offers, detailed advice, and tips to help you build your credit history.