All secured business credit cards can build credit quickly if you always pay the bill on time and keep your credit utilization low. There are two types of credit that a secured business credit card could build, however, and it may not address both equally. Secured business cards can help build business credit, but they don’t all build personal credit.
Much like unsecured business credit cards, each secured business card issuer will have their own consumer credit reporting practices. Some may not report to consumer agencies at all. So, business owners looking to rebuild damaged personal credit may want to consider a secured credit card branded for personal use. They work just as well to separate business expenses from personal expenses; they all report to consumer credit bureaus; and there are far more consumer secured cards available than business ones.
It’s also important to remember that business credit scores aren’t built the same way as personal credit scores. Building a business credit score may require more effort, and business credit scores don’t matter nearly as much as personal credit scores when it comes to securing business funding or credit cards. So, secured business credit cards generally can help build business credit, but that isn’t always as helpful as you might think.
You can build credit with a secured credit card in as little as 1 month, but it will take many months or even years to build a consistently good or excellent credit score. The length of time also depends on whether you’re building credit from nothing or rebuilding damaged credit. If you have no credit, you could see a good score after just a few months of paying on time. You’ll have a … read full answerVantageScore after 1 month and a FICO Score after 6. With bad credit, though, it will probably take 12-18 months of responsible use for you to move up to the fair credit range. Secured credit cards are great for building credit because they are easy to get and report to the credit bureaus just like unsecured cards.
But it's hard to give you an accurate estimate of how long it will take to build credit with a secured credit card without knowing the details of your situation. That’s where WalletHub can help. Just sign up for a free account, and we’ll give you a personalized credit analysis that will tell you what to improve and give you a better sense of how long it will take.
Here’s how long it takes to build credit with a secured credit card:
If you have no credit, it will take 1 month to get a VantageScore and 6 to get a FICO score. Depending on how responsibly you use your card, your first score could be anywhere from bad to good.
If you pay your bill on time and otherwise manage your finances responsibly, you can rebuild from a bad credit score (300-639) to a fair credit score (640-699) in approximately 12-18 months.
A good credit score based on limited information could easily fall due to an increase in credit utilization or a single missed payment. Building and then keeping a good or excellent credit score requires consistency over time. This is a project measured in years.
For people rebuilding credit, it will take 7-10 years for some negative information, like bankruptcies and late payments, to disappear from your credit report. But the older they are, the less impact they will have on your score.
If you’re looking to rebuild your credit, secured credit cards are the best way to do it. They’re easy to get and are indistinguishable from unsecured cards aside from the deposit requirement.
Rebuilding credit will take a while, so it’s best to get started as soon as possible. Some good behaviors to practice are always paying on time and using less than 30% of your available credit.
Secured credit cards do build credit, as all major secured cards report account information to at least one of the big three credit bureaus every month. That gives you the opportunity to add positive info to your credit report, which is the key to building credit. Whether the credit that you build with your secured card is good or bad depends on your ability to pay the bills on time. You can also build credit just by having a secured card open, even if you don’t use it to make purchases. … read full answer
A secured card will build credit for you as soon as the first month after you open it. That’s when information about the card may show up on your credit report, perhaps giving you a report for the first time. Credit scores are based on credit reports, and some models can produce a score with as little as one month of data.
If you use a secured credit card irresponsibly, maxing it out or missing payments, you’ll have negative information on your credit report. That can lead to a bad credit score. But on the flip side, responsible use of a secured card builds credit just as well as any unsecured card. The only difference between a secured card and an unsecured card is that secured cards require a security deposit and give you a credit limit equal to that deposit. Secured and unsecured cards look the same, both physically and on credit reports.
Here’s how secured cards build credit:
All major secured credit cards report to 1-3 of the major credit bureaus on a monthly basis.
Secured credit cards report information about your payment history, balance, spending limit and more to the credit bureaus each month.
The information secured cards report to the bureaus contributes to your credit history.
Responsible use of a secured card results in positive information being reported, helping to cover up past mistakes or build out a thin file.
The key to building credit with a secured card is to never miss a due date, or to just never use your card. As long as your account is open and in good standing, you’re in good shape.
Keeping your statement balance below 30% of your credit limit will help you build credit faster with a secured card.
Secured cards are the best credit cards to use if building credit is your main objective. And they’re particularly useful for rebuilding credit after mistakes. Not only do secured cards report to the credit bureaus, but they also approve even applicants with bad credit. Some don’t even do a credit check. And secured cards are known for low fees. The high approval odds and low fees are all because of the refundable security deposit.
But just because all major secured credit cards can help you build credit does not mean they’re equally attractive. They differ in several important areas, including their annual fees, minimum deposit requirements and rewards. It’s important to shop around and pick the best card for you.
If you are denied for a secured credit card, you could apply for a different secured card (one with a higher approval rate), become an authorized user on someone else’s credit card account, or apply for a credit-builder loan. Some secured credit cards don’t even check your credit when you apply. So you will only be turned down if you do not have a U.S. mailing address, a Social Security number (or Individual Taxpayer Identification Number), or enough money to fund your deposit and make monthly payments.… read full answer
In general, secured credit cards are much easier to get than unsecured cards because they require a refundable deposit that also serves as your credit limit. Because there’s less risk for the issuer, secured cards are able to offer nearly guaranteed approval, even to people with damaged credit. But that doesn’t mean everyone is accepted, and some secured cards are easier to get than others.
Typically, if you’re denied for a secured credit card, the card’s issuer will send you a letter explaining why. That can be a good place to start when determining your next steps.
What to do if you’re denied for a secured credit card:
Apply somewhere else. Just because you didn’t meet one credit card company’s requirements doesn’t necessarily mean you’re disqualified from every secured card on the market. In particular, make sure to check out credit cards with no credit check.
Become an authorized user. If someone adds you to their account as an authorized user, you’ll get a card and be able to make charges, but the primary cardholder will be responsible for paying the bills. And if they pay on time, your credit standing will improve.
Apply for a credit-builder loan. Many credit unions and banks offer small loans to help people build or rebuild their credit. Much like a secured card, you’ll need to make a deposit when you apply for a so-called credit-builder loan.
Focus on your open accounts. If you have a mortgage, student loan, auto loan, or line of credit, making your payments on time will help build up your credit score. That will make it easier to get approved for a credit card.
Why was I denied for a secured credit card?
The most common reasons people are denied for a secured credit card include having a bankruptcy or tax lien on their credit report, not having enough income to meet their monthly obligations, and having an extremely low credit score. Past delinquencies with the issuing bank, current delinquencies anywhere, and invalid application information could all be reasons as well.
The specifics vary by card, though. So, if you were denied for a secured credit card, don’t lose hope. Just apply for one of the several secured cards with no credit check, and manage your account responsibly once you’re approved. You can also sign up for WalletHub’s free credit analysis for additional help getting your credit score back on track.
WalletHub Answers is a free service that helps consumers access financial information. Information on WalletHub Answers is provided “as is” and should not be considered financial, legal or investment advice. WalletHub is not a financial advisor, law firm, “lawyer referral service,” or a substitute for a financial advisor, attorney, or law firm. You may want to hire a professional before making any decision. WalletHub does not endorse any particular contributors and cannot guarantee the quality or reliability of any information posted. The helpfulness of a financial advisor's answer is not indicative of future advisor performance.
WalletHub members have a wealth of knowledge to share, and we encourage everyone to do so while respecting our content guidelines. This question was posted by WalletHub.
Please keep in mind that editorial and user-generated content on this page is not reviewed or otherwise endorsed by any financial institution. In addition, it is not a financial institution’s responsibility to ensure all posts and questions are answered.
Ad Disclosure: Certain offers that appear on this site originate from paying advertisers, and this will be noted on an offer’s details page using the designation "Sponsored", where applicable. Advertising may impact how and where products appear on this site (including, for example, the order in which they appear). At WalletHub we try to present a wide array of offers, but our offers do not represent all financial services companies or products.