If you have bad credit, you may struggle to get approved for credit cards or other personal loans.
It isn’t easy to repair your credit if you’ve made some financial mistakes in your past. You need a good score if you want to be approved for a mortgage and housing in general, you need it for approval of car loans, and you may even need a solid credit score to be hired for certain jobs.
With how vital it is to improve bad credit, it’s worth putting in the time and effort to raise your score.
The challenge that many consumers with bad credit find themselves faced with is this; you need a line of credit to establish good credit, but with bad credit, it’s not easy to be approved for a line of credit.
So, what can you do if you want to get your bad credit score back into good standing?
One of the best ways is a second chance credit card. Second chance credit cards are subprime, meaning they are designed for people with bad credit.
There are two different second chance credit card types: secured and unsecured. With a secured card, consumers are required to put down a security deposit. This is often done in lieu of a credit check.
With an unsecured credit card, there is no security deposit required. This can be a really appealing option if it isn’t easy for you to get the funds together for a security deposit.
Let’s dig into the best second chance credit card with no security deposit required.
Best Unsecured Second Chance Credit Cards
Destiny is an unsecured card that reports to all three credit bureaus. Pre-approval won’t hurt your credit score. This second chance credit card is offered by Mastercard, so it is accepted everywhere that Mastercard is.
- You can receive approval for a card, even if you have bad credit or have been through bankruptcy.
- Starting credit limit of $500.
- There are no monthly fees for the first year and only a small fee of $10.40 for every year after.
- Better Business Bureau accredited.
- You are protected against theft and fraud. Destiny has your back if your card is lost or stolen.
- Accepted everywhere that takes Mastercard.
Merit Platinum Card
The Merit Platinum Card is an unsecured credit offered by Horizon. It’s not a Visa card or Mastercard, so it can’t be used to do all of your shopping, like some of the other unsecured cards on this list. Instead, it’s a store card offered by Horizon, so it can only be used to spend money with Horizon Outlets on eligible purchases.
If you’ve had trouble with impulsive spending, it might be good to have a card that can only be used in one place. It won’t be as easy to pull your card out and make an unplanned purchase.
There are many different items that can be purchased via the Horizon Outlets, so you can use the card to buy staples for your home or clothing for your kids, purchases you’d be making anyway, and then pay off that balance every month.
Think of it this way: you can use cash or a debit card to buy these things, or you can use this unsecured card and pay the balance off with the funds you would have spent otherwise. Then those purchases go towards improving your bad credit.
- There is no credit check or employment check required for approval.
- The card comes with a starting credit line of $750. With responsible card usage, this credit limit can be extended by up to $3,000 over time.
- There is no annual fee but a monthly membership fee of $14.77.
- Membership with this card includes free roadside assistance and a limited number of service calls and tows. This is a really unique benefit that not many other unsecured second chance credit cards provide.
- The card provides several other perks, including credit monitoring and legal assistance in select situations.
Indigo Platinum Mastercard
If you’re more interested in cards that you can use in a variety of places, Indigo Platinum Mastercard is another card that can used everywhere that Mastercard is accepted. Like other unsecured cards, there is no security deposit required.
What makes the Indigo Platinum Card stand out from other comparable cards is the unique designs. You can choose from a variety of colors and designs, many of which are quite stylish.
- It’s easy to apply, and it won’t hurt your credit score to get a pre-approval.
- You can receive an approval even if you have bad credit or prior bankruptcy.
- Even if you don’t have the best credit, it’s easy to get approval for a credit line of $300 or possibly more.
- You can personalize your card by choosing from a myriad of fun and colorful designs.
- Indigo Platinum reports to all three major credit bureaus.
Milestone Credit Card
The Milestone Gold Mastercard is another card that requires no security deposit and is created for people with bad credit. It’s easy to apply, and it can be used anywhere that accepts Mastercard.
Like all the other cards mentioned on this list, they report to all three major credit bureaus, so using the card responsibly can help you improve your credit score.
- A pre-approval will not hurt your credit score.
- Even if you have bad credit or a prior bankruptcy, you can receive approval for a credit line of $300.
- Because Milestone Gold Mastercard reports to all three major credit bureaus, if you keep your credit utilization rate low and pay your bills on time, you will see likely see your credit score improve.
- There is no monthly fee, but there is an annual fee of $35-$99, depending on your credit history.
- You are protected and won’t be responsible for fraudulent charges if your card is lost or stolen.
How To Improve Your Credit with a Second Chance Credit Card
With all of these unsecured cards, it’s important to remember that since a security deposit isn’t required, it is possible to slide into debt with irresponsible card usage.
With a secured credit card that requires a security deposit, your credit limit is based on the amount of the deposit that you put down. So it’s really like you’re spending your own money that you lent yourself.
This can be a pain if you aren’t able to raise funds for a security deposit, but the major benefit is that it’s much more difficult to go into debt using a secured card. If you’re going with an unsecured card, you’ll need to practice fiscal responsibility if you want to improve your bad credit and avoid going further into debt.
The best way to use a second chance credit card that doesn’t require a security deposit is to only spend money that you know you can pay off immediately. While you’ll have the option to carry a balance, it’s best if you can pay the balance in full each month. If you can’t pay the balance in full, always ensure that you have on time payments for your monthly payments (plus you want to avoid any late payment fees).
You should either set up automatic payments or set an alert on your phone or computer to remind you when the payment is due. When you make your payments on time, this will be reported as positive credit behaviors to the three major credit bureaus.
Another important factor is your credit utilization rate: that’s how much debt you have weighed against how much credit is available to you. If you max out your credit card, your credit utilization rate will be very poor. If you only spend 10% of your credit limit, then your credit utilization rate will be much better.
Why You Should Get a Second Chance Credit Card
A second chance credit card is a great option if you have bad credit and aren’t able to get approval for a prime credit card. By using a subprime card, you can improve your credit score, and this will allow you access to prime credit cards with greater perks and benefits in the future.
It is worth noting that many of these cards have high interest rates, so it’s in your best interest to pay these off as the interest will eat into your available credit.
Wrapping It Up
If you need a second chance to get your poor credit in good standing, a second chance credit card can be an easy way to do that. Anyone one of these credit card issuers report your account activity to the credit bureau helping you in this quest.
The best credit cards we’ve discussed here are unsecured, which means you don’t have to part with your money. No security deposit is required. This is convenient and keeps more of your money in your hands. You just need to make sure not to spend more than you can afford to pay off.
Unfortunately, most of these credit cards so not offer a higher credit limit. If you need a card with a higher credit line, you may want to consider a secured credit card that requires a minimum security deposit.
The unsecured card that is best for you will depend on a variety of factors, including where and how you plan to use the card, what you can afford in monthly and annual fees, and which perks and benefits are most valuable to you.
If you make all of your payments on time, spend responsibly, and pay the balance in full whenever possible, you’re very likely to see your low credit score improve into a good credit score.
If your credit report needs some help, considering one of these cards is a good option in helping you on your journey. Good luck!