The best store credit cards to build credit with are the Amazon.com Store Card (5% back in rewards back on Amazon.com with a Prime membership) and the Target Credit Card (5% discount at Target and Target.com). Both require just fair credit for approval. And like all major store credit cards, they report to the three major credit bureaus every month. That will help you build credit history. But keep in mind that store cards can only be used at the retailer they’re affiliated with.
You need at least a fair credit score to be approved for most store credit cards. If you have bad or limited credit, your options are slim. In fact, the only real “store card” for limited or bad credit is the Fingerhut Credit Account, which you can only use at the online retailer Fingerhut. As a result, you might be better off expanding your search beyond store credit cards to include secured credit cards and general-purpose credit cards for people with limited or bad credit. Then when you reach fair credit, you can accelerate your credit building and maximize your savings with a store credit card from your favorite retailer.
It’s also worth noting that some of the best store credit cards to build credit with have “deferred interest.” Don’t confuse this with a normal 0% offer, where you only owe interest on the balance remaining after your intro periods ends. With deferred interest, you must pay off your entire balance by the end of the promotional period. If you don’t, you owe interest at the card’s regular APR from the date of purchase instead.
Overview: Store credit cards are offered by certain retailers and can usually be used only for purchases within a specific store, website, or affiliated locations. There are also store cards that are on a network, such as Visa and Mastercard. These can be used anywhere the card’s network is accepted.
Approval Requirements: You can use a store credit card to help build credit because they're generally easier to get. Most store cards require fair credit to have a chance of being approved. The drawback is that you'll likely start out with a higher interest rate and a lower credit limit than you would with a store card on a certain network. But these cards come with stricter approval requirements.
Deferred interest: Be wary of any 0% promotional offers, particularly for large purchases. Unlike a 0% APR you'll find on some regular credit cards, most store cards operate on deferred interest. If you don't pay off the balance by the end of the promotional period, you'll be charged all the interest accrued on the original purchase price.
What to watch out for: Where you can run into trouble with a store credit card is the temptation to overspend. Your favorite retailer may bombard you with promotional offers, discounts, and sales announcements.
So, you might end up canceling out any discounts and burning up most of your credit limit. That doesn't bode well for your credit utilization, which should be at less than 30% of your available credit. And then there's the interest that will be tacked on if you have to carry a balance to the next month.
So, store cards can definitely help you build credit, as long as you keep your account in good standing. The same rules apply to a regular credit card, so feel free to check out more tips on how to build credit with a credit card. Some of the best store credit cards offer extensive rewards and are worth getting, especially if you already shop at their respective stores.
The easiest department store credit card to get approved for is the Fingerhut Credit Account, but that’s only if you count an online retailer / mail catalog as a department store. It’s the only store card you can get with bad credit. Pretty much all other store credit cards require fair credit (640+ score) for approval. But that still means most department store credit cards are easy to get for most people. It also means you should choose your card based on where you shop the most and which offers the most rewards, since there isn’t much of a difference in their approval requirements. Let’s take a look at a few good options.… read full answer
Here are some of the easiest department store credit cards to get:
Target Credit Card: For people with fair credit. 5% discount at Target and Target.com. Returns extended by 30 days. Free shipping. $0 annual fee.
Walmart® Store Card: For people with fair credit. 2 - 5 points per $1 on Walmart purchases and Walmart & Murphy USA Fuel Stations. $0 annual fee.
Kohl's Credit Card: For people with fair credit. 35% discount on your fist purchase. 5% cash back on every qualifying purchase made at Kohl. $0 annual fee.
JCPenney Credit Card: For people with fair credit. 1 point / $1 on qualifying purchases. Discounts on select items. Annual fee: $0.
Amazon.com Store Card: For people with fair credit. 5% back in rewards cash back at Amazon.com if you have a Prime account. $10 gift card after approval. $0 annual fee.
There are plenty of other department store cards with great deals too. For example, TJX, Saks Fifth Avenue and Sears all give savings and perks that are worth looking at. Just remember that department store credit cards can only be used at the store that issued them (and sometimes affiliates), so apply for a card from somewhere you know you’ll shop on a regular basis.
They don’t have a whole lot of competition, however. There are very few store credit cards for bad credit available right now. Nearly all store cards require at least fair credit for approval, according to WalletHub’s database of 1,500+ credit card offers. But there are exceptions from time to time. … read full answer
There are other types of cards to consider, too. They include unsecured credit cards for people with bad credit as well as secured credit cards, which give you the highest approval odds. Some even offer rewards and are affiliated with a popular brand. In other words, they’re like store credit cards for bad credit, but you can use them anywhere. You can check out our top picks below.
There aren’t many store credit cards for people bad credit to choose from right now, so identifying the best of the bunch isn’t very difficult. Overall, the best store credit card for bad credit is the Fingerhut Credit Account because you can get it with a poor credit score and there’s no annual fee. Plus, the Fingerhut Credit Account reports to the credit bureaus every month, which will allow you to build credit if you pay your bills on time.
Fingerhut is an online retailer that sells a broad array of goods from major brands, often at a discount, and allows you to pay for them in monthly installments. You can buy TVs and computers for up to 25% off, for example.
You don’t want to limit yourself unnecessarily, however. There are plenty of other credit cards for bad credit that could provide even better perks with popular retailers. So, make sure to keep the following pointers in mind when shopping for the best credit card for your needs.
3 Things to Remember When Looking for Store Credit Cards with Bad Credit
Store credit cards don’t give the highest approval odds. Nearly all store credit cards require at least fair credit for approval.
Store credit cards and co-branded credit cards are different. A store credit card works at no more than a few retailers, but usually just one. A co-branded credit card is affiliated with a retailer or other company but can be used anywhere Visa, Mastercard, Discover or American Express is accepted.
Secured cards are best for credit repair. Store credit cards for poor credit are barely a thing. Secured credit cards, on the other hand, were made to help people with bad credit rebuild.
If you’re interested in more advice, sign up for a free WalletHub account. You can check your credit score for free, with daily updates, and receive personalized credit-improvement tips and recommendations for credit cards with high approval odds.
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