7+ credit cards for people with little to no credit | finder.com

Seven credit cards for people with bad or poor credit

Go from poor credit to good credit with these cards — and a budget.

30% of all Americans have poor or no credit.
You can work to rebuild your credit with a secured credit card.

Apply for one of these cards and get prequalified in 60 seconds.

  • Good for credit. Applying for these cards will not affect your credit score.
  • Cash back. Some cards offer a percentage cash back for purchases.
  • No application fee. It’s free to apply for these cards.

Other cards you can apply for with low credit

Don’t like our #1 choice? Here are six other cards that made our top list of credit cards for those with low credit. These cards are easy to apply for and accept applicants with low credit scores.

Name Product APR (Annual Percentage Rate) for Purchases Annual Fee Minimum Credit Score
14.74%, 18.74% or 24.74% variable
$0
Fair (660-699)
Earn unlimited 1.5% cash rewards on purchases. See Rates and Fees
12.74%, 16.74% or 20.74% variable
$0
Fair (660-699)
An 18-month 0% Intro APR period on both purchases and balance transfers, plus zero foreign transaction fees, makes this is a strong well-rounded card. See Rates and Fees
16.74% variable
$495
Good (700-739)
Mastercard Black Card members receive an annual $100 air travel credit toward flight-related purchases including airline tickets, baggage fees, upgrades and more.
16.74% variable
$195
Enjoy unique excursions, privileged access to exclusive events and insider opportunities.
16.74% variable
$995
Good (700-739)
Earn points every time you spend. Luxury Card enhances your purchasing power by providing you with one (1) point for every one dollar ($1) you spend. Every purchase gets you closer to the rewards you want.
24.74% variable
$39
Poor (Below 660)
Designed to help build credit history with no deposit required and access to benefits.
23.9% variable
$75 annual fee for the first year ($99 thereafter)
Poor (Below 660)
With this card you get a 23.9% Variable APR.
Poor (Below 660)
19.74% to 25.74% variable
Up to
Poor (Below 660)
Get 1% cash back rewards on eligible purchases including gas, groceries, and services such as mobile phone, internet, cable and satellite TV, terms apply.
14.74% to 25.74% variable
$0
Fair (660-699)
Earn 10,000 Membership Rewards® Points after you use your new Card to make $1,000 in purchases in your first 3 months.
14.99% to 24.99% variable
$0
Good (700-739)
Earn more cash back for the things you buy most.
14.74% to 25.74% variable
$0
Fair (660-699)
Snag a $150 bonus statement credit after you spend $1,000 in the first 3 months
17.74% to 24.74% variable
$0 annual fee for the first year ($95 thereafter)
Good (700-739)
Earn 50,000 bonus points after you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening. That's $625 toward travel when you redeem through Chase Ultimate Rewards®
17.74% to 24.74% variable
$450
Good (700-739)
Earn 50,000 BONUS POINTS after spending $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening* — that's $750 toward travel when you redeem through Chase Ultimate Rewards®.
14.74% to 24.74% variable
$95
Fair (660-699)
15,000 Membership Rewards points after you spend $1,000 in the first 3 months of opening your account
16.74% to 25.49% variable
$0
Fair (660-699)
Earn unlimited 1.5% cash back on every purchase - it's automatic. No minimum to redeem for cash back.
17.74% to 24.74% variable
$95
Fair (660-699)
Earn unlimited 2 points for every $1 spent on travel and dining purchases and 1.5 points for every $1 spent on all other purchases.
14.74%, 20.74% or 24.74% variable
$0
Fair (660-699)
Earn unlimited 1.5% cash back on every purchase, every day
16.74% to 25.49% variable
$0
Fair (660-699)
Earn 5% Cash back in bonus categories up to $1,500 every quarter. Earn 1% Cash back on all other purchases.
16.74% to 24.74% variable
$0
Fair (660-699)
An intro offer rewards cardholders with a $250 value (25,000 online bonus points) after spending $1,000 within the first 90 days of account opening
16.74% to 25.49% variable
$0
Fair (660-699)
Jumpstart your financial fitness! 60 day introductory balance transfer offer, save on interest, and get your free monthly credit score.
14.74%, 21.24% or 24.74% variable
$0 annual fee for the first year ($95 thereafter)
Excellent (740 or higher)

Compare up to 4 providers


How does a secured credit card help you rebuild credit?

A secured card does not automatically improve your credit score. To raise your credit score using a secured credit card, follow these guidelines:

  • Pay off your balances every month. Secured credit cards report to credit bureaus just like unsecured cards, which means you’ll have a better chance at improving your credit score if you pay off your balance in full each month.
  • Stay within a budget. Credit cards are not free money, and you should only spend what you can afford.
  • Use your card regularly. Credit rating agencies look for activity on a card every month, so if you charge a small amount and pay it off each month, you’re likely to improve your credit score.
  • If you can’t avoid carrying a balance, keep it small. Sometimes you need to put more on your card than you can afford to pay off at once. Credit rating agencies look at your debt-to-income ratio, and it’s recommended that you keep this ratio below 30%. This means if you have a card with a $500 limit, try to keep your balance below $150.

Debit cards vs. secured credit cards

Debit cards and secured credit cards both require you to deposit cash in a bank account in order to spend money. However, secured cards do two things that debit cards don’t:

  • Debit cards don’t report to credit rating agencies, and therefore don’t help build your credit.
  • Debit cards only let you use money from your bank account. Secured cards allow you to “graduate” to either partially unsecured credit cards — cards that allow you to spend a bit more than you’ve deposited — or fully unsecured credit cards that don’t require a deposit.

Secured cards vs. subprime cards

Subprime cards differ from secured cards because they don’t require a security deposit. You’ll also get your security deposit back after paying off your secured card and closing your account. Both options are available to someone who has no credit or is trying to rebuild their credit, but subprime cards often come with high fees and interest rates.

Subprime cards have a bad reputation for being predators or “fee harvesters”. Linda Sherry, the director of national priorities at Consumer Action, puts it simply: “Consumers are better off using a secured credit card than a subprime one even though it requires depositing money with a card company.”

What is the 2009 cARD act?

The 2009 CARD Act reined in the practices of subprime cards, requiring that fees be no more than 25% of the initial line of credit. If you have a subprime card with an initial credit of $300, the fees cannot be more than $75 (25%) the first year. This doesn’t stop some subprime issuers from skirting the law, and the CFPB continues to crack down on cards breaking the 25% rule.


Which credit card is best for me?

Couldn’t make a decision on which credit card is right for you? Answer these three quick questions to see what we pick for you!

Question 1 of 3

Do you have low or poor credit?

Question 2 of 3

Are you currently employed?

Question 3 of 3

Do you currently have a checking or savings account?

Based on your answers, we think these providers are right for you

Green Dot primor® Visa® Classic Secured Credit Card

Green Dot primor® Visa® Classic Secured Credit Card

Credit lines available from $200 to $5,000! You decide where you want to start and open your Personal Savings Deposit Account to secure your line.

  • $39 annual fee
  • 13.99% APR
  • Minimum Income Requirement of at least $100 higher than your monthly expenses
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2 Responses

  1. Default Gravatar
    AndrewJuly 25, 2017

    I have no Idea what my credit is, Credit karma told me nothing

    • finder Customer Care
      HaroldJuly 26, 2017Staff

      Hi Andrew,

      Thank you for your inquiry.

      To understand more about your credit score it would be helpful if you can read this page. In line with this, should you need to dig further about your credit history you can request your credit report here.

      I hope this information has helped.

      Cheers,
      Harold

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