Our editors compared hundreds of offers – both secured and unsecured – to identify the best credit cards for people with bad credit. And you can check out their favorites below.
Here are 2018’s best credit cards for bad credit:
|Card Name||Annual Fee||Min. Security Deposit||APR|
|Capital One® Secured Mastercard®||None||$49, $99 or $200||24.99% (V)|
|Discover it® Secured Card - No Annual Fee||None||$200||24.49% (V)|
|Harley-Davidson® Secured Credit Card||None||$300||24.49% (V)|
|Wells Fargo Secured Credit Card||$25||$300||20.49% (V)|
|OpenSky® Secured Visa® Credit Card||$35||$200||18.64% (V)|
|Credit One Bank® Platinum Visa® for Rebuilding Credit||$0 - $99||19.15% to 25.24% (V)|
|Indigo® Mastercard® for Less than Perfect Credit||$0 - $99||23.9%|
|Milestone® Mastercard® - Bad Credit Considered||$35-$99*||23.9%|
Below, you can learn more about the dos and don’ts of choosing a credit card at this important stage of your credit career.
4 tips before you apply for a credit card with bad credit
- Focus on secured cards. Secured credit cards offer the highest chances of approval because they require you to place a security deposit that acts as your credit line. This deposit also prevents the need to charge fees, making secured cards the cheapest way to rebuild credit.
- Get current on all your bills. For starters, there’s no point in adding to your obligations if you don’t have all your ducks in a row. Plus, many credit cards for bad credit won’t approve you if have any recent delinquencies, according to WalletHub’s Secured Card Report.
- Don’t confuse secured cards with guaranteed approval. While secured cards offer the closest thing you can get to guaranteed approval, most will still perform a credit check. And certain items on your credit report could disqualify you. For example, some issuers won’t approve secured card applicants who have an unsettled tax lien (e.g. Wells Fargo) or recent delinquency (e.g. Capital One) on their record. If you want a secured card that doesn’t do a credit check, OpenSky® Secured Visa® Credit Card is a good option.
- Compare offers based on fees. Low-cost credit improvement should be your top priority. One way to keep costs low is to always pay your bill in full, to avoid interest charges. Another is finding a card with low (or no) annual, monthly and one-time fees.