The best credit cards for building credit

Filed under BUSINESS, LIFE STYLES, NEWS

BY LESLIE MCFADDEN
BANKRATE.COM/TNS

It’s not always easy to get a credit card if you have little or no credit history. But it is possible.

You’ll likely have to get a card that is priced for higher-risk consumers.

Cards in this credit category tend to have lower credit limits, high interest rates and even annual fees. You won’t get approved for cards requiring good credit.

Look for a card that reports to the three major credit bureaus, has no or low fees, and a reasonable interest rate in case you carry a balance from one month to the next.

Card types
• Store or gas credit cards. These cards tend to have high interest rates and low credit limits but are easier to qualify for than general-purpose credit cards. Unless they carry the logo of a card network such as Visa or MasterCard, however, these cards can only be used at that particular merchant or group of merchants.
• Secured credit cards. These cards require a cash deposit as collateral in case you default, but you can often graduate to an unsecured card after a given period and get your deposit refunded. On the downside, they come with an annual fee, and the deposit amount usually determines the credit limit.
• Bad credit unsecured cards. These cards don’t require a deposit but they tend to charge high interest rates, annual fees and other upfront fees in some cases.
• Prepaid “credit” cards. Prepaid cards are actually debit cards, not credit cards. That is, you can’t revolve a balance on these cards.

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