Choosing to file bankruptcy can be a decision that relieves some of the stress and pressure of being in debt and unable to pay your bills. When it comes to finances, bankruptcy can give you a clean slate and a fresh start to a new life. However, your credit score will drop as a result, and although you are ready and willing to get a jumpstart on rebuilding your credit, you may find it difficult, at first, getting approved. In the meantime, you may need to resort to credit cards after bankruptcy, that are designed for those with low credit ratings, to get started on your path to a better credit score.
You may be able to qualify for an unsecured credit card after bankruptcy, which means you won’t need a security deposit to get the card. However, because these cards are typically designed for lower credit ratings, make sure you are aware of the terms that come with carrying the card. The following cards are among the best unsecured credit cards you can get after bankruptcy.
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See if you Pre-Qualify without harming your credit score
1% cash back on gas & groceries, terms apply
This is a fully unsecured credit card with no deposit requirement
Credit One Bank® Platinum Visa® for Building Credit is one of the most popular unsecured credit card issuers for rebuilding and building credit. This card gives you a credit limit of, at least, $300. The annual fee is based on your creditworthiness, and can be anywhere from $0 to $75 the first year, and $0 to $99 each year afterward. The interest rate is 15.65% to 24.15%. You could also qualify for a card that awards 1% cash back for your purchases.
It isn’t any surprise that the card comes with potentially, a high APR and high annual fee. This is part of what is expected when your credit score drops. However, there are also very few options for unsecured credit cards after bankruptcy, so if you aren’t able to qualify for others, you may want to use this one to begin building your credit score.
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$35-$99* annual fee
real credit card for a less than perfect credit
*Dependent on credit worthiness
The Milestone® MasterCard® with Free Choice of Card Image is also a popular choice for rebuilding credit. You can even see if you prequalify without it affecting your credit score, which can save you an inquiry that can sometimes affect your score as well. The APR on purchases is 23.9%, and the annual fee is $75 the first year and then $99 each year afterward.
The benefit of this card is you can see if you prequalify first, so you don’t waste a credit inquiry on your credit report if you don’t end up qualifying for the card. The APR and the annual fees are high with this card, as well, and you have a better chance if your credit is higher, to qualify for a lower APR and lower annual fee with the Credit One card. Still, if you don’t qualify for other cards, this card is another solid unsecured option to use while you build your credit rating.
The credit cards with First Premier Bank are popular among people with poor credit who don’t typically qualify for other unsecured credit cards. This card has an APR for purchases of 36%, a one-time processing fee of $75, and an annual fee that is dependent on the credit limit and deducted from the available credit when you get the card. For instance, if you get a credit limit of $300, your annual fee will be $75 the first year and then $45 each year after that. You would get a card with a credit limit of $225. This fee can be as much as $125 per year if you qualify for a credit limit of $500.
It’s likely that if you have been denied other unsecured cards, that you will qualify for this one, which can help you move forward to improve your credit. However, this card has some of the most expensive fees and interest rates that you will find with a credit card. You will find that, although secured credit cards require a security deposit, the fees and APR will be lower, and when you close the account, you get your security deposit back. With the First Premier Bank Credit Card, however, you won’t get any of the fees you’ve paid for the card back, and it could end up costing you a great deal of money.
After bankruptcy, you may not want a secured credit card simply because you usually have to have, at least, $200 to get started. However, you will find that some of the best cards for rebuilding credit are secured, and they often carry lower fees and interest rates. Plus, you can use them just as you would use any credit card, and they look exactly the same, so you don’t have to worry about retailers or anyone else knowing you are rebuilding your credit. The following are some of the most recommended secured credit cards after bankruptcy.
Because of the high APRs that are often associated with credit cards after bankruptcy, you might want to consider a secured credit card like the primor Secured Visa Gold, which comes with one of the lowest APRs you’ll find with any card designed to improve credit. This card requires a deposit of at least $200, which is held in an interest bearing savings account while your account is open. The annual fee is $49, and the APR is a fixed rate of 9.99%, which means you don’t have to worry about the rate increasing or changing. There are also no credit checks with this card.
The only disadvantage of this card is the annual fee, which is still lower than the fee for other credit cards. For consumers who carry balances from month to month, the low interest rate can help save money, and your security deposit earns interest while you rebuild your credit score. Plus, there are no credit checks, so you are essentially guaranteed the card. If you’re looking for a low-interest rate credit card after bankruptcy, you won’t find many that can compete with this card.
Capital One is a leader in credit cards, and its secured card is one of its most popular. This card requires a deposit of $49, $99, or $200, depending on your creditworthiness, but you can qualify for a card with a limit of, at least $200, even with a lower deposit. You can increase your limit by adding to your deposit, but you can also receive credit line increases from Capital One without making additional deposits as your credit improves. This card has no annual fee, no balance transfer fee, and no foreign transaction fee, making it one of the best no-fee secured credit cards available. The APR on purchases and balance transfers is 24.99%.
Although the APR is high with this card, it’s one of the only cards you’ll find after bankruptcy that has no annual fee, no balance transfer fee, and no foreign transaction fee. In fact, it’s difficult to find a card without these fees even with excellent credit. You can get around the high APR if you make sure you pay your balance in full each month, and then you can use the card and rebuild your credit, basically without it costing you anything. Except for the interest rate, this is one of the least expensive cards available for poor or bad credit.
You can read more about rebuilding bad credit here.