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TopConsumerReviews.com provides unique articles that you won't find anywhere else on the internet. These articles are designed to help you make the most informed decisions possible.

Credit Card Alternatives for Poor Credit Scores

Lax credit rules, over spending, a weak economy and a startling number of unemployed workers have many consumers licking their financial wounds. Starting over financially is no walk in the park but is a necessity to get back on your feet and headed in the right direction.

Don't Over Apply
First of all, keep in mind that if you're not having any luck with applying for a credit card with the traditional banks - don’t continue to apply. Each time a credit check occurs you potentially impact your credit score further.

Credit Card Alternatives
This may be easier said than done. Many lenders will reject applications for credit from those with poor credit. But that doesn’t mean you’re completely out of options. Having access to a MasterCard or Visa is necessary in many situations and doing without is nearly impossible for some. Consider these alternatives:

  • Prepaid Cards are one option for those unable to qualify for a credit card. Essentially they work independently from your credit score and do not impact you positively or negatively on your credit history. The basis of a prepaid credit card is that, for a fee, you may “load” the card in advance via a cash payment and then are able to use it as needed. Again, prepaid card companies will not report your responsible spending to reporting agencies but will help you learn to stay within your budget and get you into the habit of only spending what you can afford.
  • Secured Credit Cards are similar to a prepaid card but do work in conjunction with your credit score. Typically a customer is able to obtain a secure credit card via a cash deposit. After several months of making monthly payments and staying within the credit limit, a secured credit card company will often issue a line of credit that is more similar to an unsecured credit card. This is considered a starter credit card to help get you back on your feet.
  • Bad Credit - Credit Cards are specifically designed for those with poor credit history and a low score. Some companies may still be willing to issue a line of credit. HOwever, be prepared for hefty fees and penalties of any credit card you obtain. Credit card companies willing to risk a line of credit to someone who has been historically irresponsible are going to charge fees.. Annual fees can range from $50 to several hundreds of dollars and are hard to avoid. Credit limits on these types of cards are typically very low and may even require collateralization.

Establish a Payment History
Once you’re able to gain access to even a small line of credit treat it with the upmost importance. Demonstrate that you can make monthly payments on time each month and spend only within your credit limit. This practice done consistently will eventually earn you a larger line of credit at cheaper interest rates.

Secured Credit Cards: What You Need to Know

With that in mind, here's an overview of secured credit cards, how they work, and why you're better off using one than a prepaid debit card or another "bad credit" credit card product. Secured credit ...

Published:  Fri, 15 Feb 2019 09:34:00 GMT



Best business credit cards for travel

Information about credit cards and card offers is accurate as of the date of publication ... You'll also earn: 5x points on flights and prepaid hotels through AmexTravel.com 50% more points on purchas...

Published:  Wed, 20 Feb 2019 07:52:00 GMT



Where Consumers Turn To Personalize Their Card Spending Experiences

Consumers are not only using their smartphones to text and talk, but to manage how they use their credit, debit and prepaid cards. Whether it's keeping tabs on their dependents' financial spending hab...

Published:  Fri, 22 Feb 2019 01:30:00 GMT



Kroger Launches Kroger Pay and New Rewards Debit Card

Shoppers who have a 1-2-3 REWARDS credit card, REWARDS prepaid card or REWARDS debit card can earn fuel points and grocery rewards when paying through Kroger Pay. The mobile wallet also shows availabl...

Published:  Wed, 13 Feb 2019 15:26:00 GMT



Watch out for this credit card interest trap

the credit card companies categorise that as a "˜cash advance', and interest starts accruing immediately. Next is gift cards or prepaid cards (think: prepaid Visa). Again, the credit providers have dec...

Published:  Wed, 20 Feb 2019 13:21:33 GMT



Apple and Goldman Sachs may soon issue a credit card together

By now, users of Apple Wallet can store in the app "credit, debit, and prepaid cards, store cards, boarding passes, movie tickets, coupons, rewards cards, student ID cards" etc. Then users can use "pa...

Published:  Fri, 22 Feb 2019 01:11:00 GMT



Renting Cars With a Debit Card Is Made Easier at Dollar and Thrifty

"When I rent a car," Mr. Peterson said, "I use a credit card." Does the new Dollar policy include prepaid debit cards Dollar accepts traditional Visa, Mastercard and Discover debit cards linked to ba...

Published:  Fri, 08 Feb 2019 14:17:00 GMT



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