If you have a lack of credit history or want to improve your credit score, you might be wondering what are the best credit cards to build credit. Getting a credit card can be one of the best ways to build credit, as long as you use it responsibly. In fact, depending on how you use your credit card―and when and how you pay off your charges―a credit card could be a completely free way to build your credit.
If you lack credit history or it’s lower than your desired credit score, you probably won’t be able to qualify for every credit card out there. Luckily, though, there are credit cards that are designed specifically for people like you so you can start building your credit.
5 Best Credit Cards to Build Credit
- Discover it Secured
- Citi Secured Mastercard
- Capital One Secured Mastercard
- OpenSky Secured Visa Credit Card
- First Progress Platinum Elite Mastercard Secured Credit Card
Keep reading for detailed information on each credit card.
If you have a lack of credit history or want to improve your credit score, you may have to turn to a secured credit card to build your credit.
A secured credit card will require that you make a refundable security deposit to the card before you can begin using it. The financial institution issuing the card will then review your usage of and payment to the card over time and help you improve your credit.
Here’s our list of the best credit cards to build credit:
This is one of the best credit cards to build credit. It requires a refundable security deposit of $200 after you are approved. Every eight months, Discover will review your situation to see if they can transition you to an unsecured credit card―which would then refund you your deposit.
The regular APR on this card is currently 22.99%. There is no annual fee for the card, and one of the best parts is that you can earn cashback rewards while you are building your credit.
The Discover it Secured card offers 2% cashback at gas stations and restaurants, up to $1,000 per year combined. You can also earn 1% cashback on all other purchases, and Discover will match all the cashback you earn in your first year.
This card has no annual fee either and carries a variable 22.49% APR. Citi requires a security deposit of at least $200 to open this account. Your credit limit will be equal to your security deposit, once you’re approved.
The Citi Secured Mastercard can be used anywhere Mastercard is accepted, and it even offers flexible payment due dates, based on what works best for you and your budget.
The card doesn’t offer any cashback rewards, points, or miles.
This secured card has no annual fee and a variable 26.99% APR. You will be required to make a security deposit (refundable) of either $49, $99 or $200, depending on your application, and you’ll be extended an initial credit line of $200 once your card is open. Definitely one of the best credit cards to rebuild credit.
After making your first five monthly payments on time, you’ll be able to get access to a higher credit limit without needing to make an additional security deposit.
The card doesn’t offer any cashback rewards, points, or miles.
OpenSky’s card doesn’t do a credit check to approve your application, which is especially nice for people with a complete lack of credit history. The variable APR of 19.14% is also pretty low for a secured credit card.
You will be required to make a security deposit of at least $200. It is refundable and will become the credit line on your card, so you can choose how much you’d like.
One thing about this card is that there is a $35 annual fee that goes along with it. The card doesn’t offer any cashback rewards, points, or miles.
The institution offers three different secured credit cards, with 9.99%, 13.99%, and 19.99% variable APR. This card doesn’t require a credit history or minimum credit score to be approved, but it requires a refundable deposit of $200 to $2,000, depending on the credit line you are seeking.
Just keep in mind that these are different than credit cards for bad credit, which are issued to people with low credit scores.
Why Is It Important to Build a Strong Credit Score?
You probably know that it is desirable to have a good credit score, but you may not know exactly why. Your credit score is one of the main pieces of information that financial institutions will use to determine whether they think you are worthy of extending credit to.
Credit doesn’t come just in the form of a credit card, either. Your credit score will be used to determine whether you can rent an apartment, connect utilities to your home and/or business, get good insurance coverage, get a cell phone plan, and obtain a mortgage and/or car loan, for example.
Not only will a better credit score make you more likely to be approved for these lines of credit, but your borrowing interest rates will be lower the better your credit score is. Over the life of a loan, even a small difference in your interest rate can mean hundreds of dollars in savings.
If you have a lack of credit history or a lower credit score, it may be difficult to build your score up. Over time, though, using a credit card is an effective way to build your credit.
3 Credit Cards to Improve Your Credit
If you already have a credit score but you need to give those numbers a pump, these credit cards will help you improve your score over time.
- 6. Avant Secured Mastercard Credit Card
- 7. Capital One QuicksilverOne Cash Rewards Secured Credit Card
- 8. Capital One Spark® Classic for Business
One of the perks of this card is that it tops the list of easy online approval, which will make people with a not so strong credit score very happy. It does charges an annual fee of $39 but besides that, you won’t have to make monthly payments for maintenance or application fees.
The card they offer has a variable 25.99% APR, and even though it has a low credit limit, you can increase it after you’ve proved a responsible use.
People with an average credit score will find this card a great option to improve their numbers. And, as its name says, you win rewards with your shopping which you can use later for cash back (1.5% for each purchase), online shopping, and more.
This card’s APR is 26.99% and you pay a $39 annual fee, but the benefits can make it up for it: travel accident insurance, extended warranties, secondary auto rental, concierge service 24/7, and others.
If you are a business owner with an average credit score, this is a great card for you. It will be much easier to qualify for this card than the top-level business credit cards and it will help your score. Plus, you’ll get some rewards like the 1% of every dollar you spend.
It has a $0 annual fee, 26.99% APR, and you also get some other benefits like roadside assistance, no foreign transaction fees, extended warranties, and others.
Other Common Questions on Credit Cards and Building Credit
What is the easiest credit card to be approved for?
OpenSky Secured Visa Credit Card may be the best option since they don’t perform a credit check.
Can you get a credit card with a 550 credit score?
Yes, you can. If you have a credit score of 550 or below you can apply for a secured credit card (meaning, you’ll be required to put up collateral to be approved). Also, check our list of the best cards for bad credit.
How can I build my credit fast with a credit card?
There are many actions you can take to build your credit quickly by using a credit card. Try to keep your credit card use below 30% of your credit limit. And always pay your full balance by the due date. Keep reading here for more tips on how to boost your credit fast.
What is the easiest credit card to get with no credit?
The easiest credit card to get with no credit is the OpenSky Secured Visa Credit Card. As we mentioned, there is no credit check when you apply, so as long as you are 18 years old or older and have enough income to afford your monthly bill payments, you have great chances to be approved.
Today’s the Day to Start Building Your Credit
If you don’t have a credit history or would like to strengthen your credit score, choose one from this list of the best credit cards to build credit. A secured credit card is a great way to build your credit. The financial institution will just require a refundable security deposit to open your account, and you can get an increase in this credit line―and even switch to an unsecured card―as you make on-time monthly payments.
Another great way to build your credit is through a loan. While it may be difficult to get approved for a loan with some companies, that is not the case at Camino Financial. We are focused on helping our customers get the credit they need, whether they have great credit or no credit at all.
We offer business loans to a variety of customers. We live up to our motto of “No Business Left Behind” by providing great lending options as well as educational and information tools from a like-minded group of business owners like yourself.
Apply for a business loan with Camino Financial today, and you’ll be well on your way to building yourself a good credit score!