Credit Cards that do not Require a Credit Check
This is credit cards 101: when you apply for the credit card, a bank pulls out your credit report from major credit bureaus and assesses your credit-worthiness based on that information.
The problem comes when you do not have a credit history at all (no credit situation) or it contains some unwanted adverse events like failed payments or even bankruptcy (bad credit situation).
In both situations, most credit card offers are not accessible for the customer except for special products with no credit check or loyal to bad credit history. Let’s look deeper at different cases.
Students usually do not have a credit history before getting a first loan or credit card. Under the Credit Card Act of 2009 provisions, young people under 21 cannot get a credit card without a co-signer, so you do not to have a credit history yourself but need to be able to bring a co-signer with a good credit score to be approved. There’s a lot of student offers from major and smaller banks available. Some of our favorites are:
no annual fee
no credit needed
5% cashback on changing categories
double first year cashback
It is more difficult for adults with no credit history – this is especially true for newcomers to the country. You cannot apply out-of-the-country credit history in the US even if it is flawless. There is an option to have a co-signer, but it is not that easy to find someone in a new country who will put his credit at risk for you. The best solution is to use credit cards designed specifically for people with no credit – Capital One Platinum is one of the most popular. These cards usually have much higher APR and a low initial credit limit, but will help you in building a credit history in a couple of years of wise credit card use.
Another option to consider is a secured card (read more about secured cards below).
People with bad credit:
With bad credit, you have several options as well. In any case, it helps if you start with a store and a gas card combination.
This unsecured card requires no deposit and can help build your credit
Receive opportunities for credit line increases, a fee may apply
See if you Pre-Qualify in less than 60 seconds
Receive 1% cash back on eligible purchases, terms apply
$0-$99 annual fee
Bankruptcy credit cards
Some banks offer the type of products with small limits and high APRs. Milestone® MasterCard® with Free Choice of Card Image is one of them.
$35-$99* annual fee
real credit card for a less than perfect credit
*Dependent on credit worthiness
Secured credit cards
Designed to build your credit history from scratch or to rebuild a damaged credit, secured cards require a security deposit on a bank account that serves as collateral against your line of credit. Pure secured cards’ credit limit exactly matches your security deposit, but there are hybrid offers that let you, for example, enjoy a $500 limit for a $250 deposit.
Sometimes banks let you start with a pure secured solution then upgrade your limit without an additional deposit and finally let you graduate to an unsecured card.
Important details to watch when selecting a secured card: the card should report to 3 major credit agencies to build your credit score – some banks report to unknown organizations which doesn’t help your score. Another must-have on a secured card is a grace period – it is much more convenient to have it even if you pay off your balance in full every month (which is highly recommended for credit building).
Mostly, prepaid cards do not require any credit checks and are very easy to get. The downside to this is that they are not covered under the CARD Act and usually have high fees and are difficult to understand terms.
Another problem is that prepaid cards do not give you any line of credit and hence do not report to credit bureaus and do not help you in building credit. Some exclusions exist, like Account Now Prepaid card, but they usually work as a secured card despite being marketed as prepaid.
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