I checked this one out too, when it was reviewed as a number one pick on another site. When I checked it out the terms for the card had changed from those on the reviewing site. Initially it looked better, but then I saw all the details on the terms link (which is on the second page and very small, the fees are horrible. If you plan on running a large balance on the card from month to month, it may not be too bad at the 0% interest, but that won't help people build credit up as quickly as charging 10-30% of the available balance and paying it off will (no interest fees anyway if you use it that way). If you need a secured card to build credit try Public Savings or Orchard, they have considerably better terms that are clearly spelled out.
JimmA's response was:
Almost $120 dollars a year to keep this one.
JimmA's reply was:
I did it in one month. In January of this year I applied for a new car loan after my old car died. I paid for my last car with cash and haven't had any credit cards (or need for them, I thought) I have had a car loan that was paid in full and never late 6 years ago. When they pulled my credit they said I had zero credit, no new loans or anything else in the past 2 years.
I began to educate myself and found my Credit Karma score was 565. I got a $1500 secured card from Public Savings Bank and the next month it went up to 654. I also got a $200 card from Orchard Bank the following month and it went up a few more points and has been slowly rising since. In April I financed a new car much nicer than the one I originally looked at. The finance manager said I had good credit then just not much substance behind it. I have found with a little experimenting that going over 30% of your available credit will drop it significantly, about 30 points in my case, but paying it off brings it right back up. The best scores I've had were when I kept it as low as possible 1 or 2% but not zero. I do this by buying a tank of gas with both cards and then paying them off every month. Use the tools and info here on Credit Karma ro help you meet your goals. Good luck.
Ok, here's a new update on this card.
I gave these guys a glowing review when I got this card over 2 years ago and have been a perfect customer - $1500 balance, small monthly purchases paid in full as soon as the charges post.
Never had any problems with this card until now.
Originally this card was the best - low interest & no annual fee. But the physical bank itself was closed in August 2011 and the new owners don't look very consumer friendly. The new card has some fees etc that put that card more in the predatory lender category.
They said that my card would stay the same, but this morning - 2/3/12 the Mint app on my phone notified me of a $50 fee on this account, I hope this is a mistake. The nature of this card is to rebuild or build good credit, I wonder how many people with my card will be caught unawares by a $50 charge on their account and get a ding on their credit because of this?
I'll see monday whether this charge is a mistake or if they are changing the cardholder agreement. Nice timing that this charge is posted on a weekend so their customer service is closed.
I've just recieved my Public Savings Bank Visa a few weeks ago and it has already showed up on my Credit report.
I used it for a few small purchases ($42 on $1500 limit)and have already paid it off, although the payment hasn't register on my report yet.
My CK score has gone up almost 100 points since last month, thanks to this card and disputing items on my credit report.
The physical bank was closed in August 2011 for being underfunded and Capital bank took over their account assets and card programs.
They added a $50 annual fee, plus a $4 monthly paper statement fee, which can be cancelled with a little searching on the website.
Too bad, it was a good card that I thought I would keep forever, but as soon as I buy a new house I will likely be ditching - or at very least getting most of my security deposit back from.
Capital One or Orchard bank are the way to go now for a secured card to rebuild credit.
If it's an old debt they are not allowed to change the date or start it over, no matter what they say or do, this is called re-aging. You can dispute it and have it corrected to the original date.
Also hard credit inquiries have to be authorized by you seeking credit, anything else should be a soft inquiry and does not affect your credit score.
You want to keep in mind that it isn't good to carry a balance of more than 30% of the available credit on any card, higher percentages will lower your score.
Just charging a few dollars every month and paying it off every month will show activity and a positive payment history and will raise your score over time.
It's a good idea when buying a car, even if you have the cash, to finance part of it and pay it off over time to get a better mix of credit. Another idea is to take out a personal loan for a small amount and pay that off over time, you don't even have to spend it, just deposit it into an interest bearing account,
The key is to not overspend, to stay within you budget, make on time payments and not use credit cards for larger purchases, the interest is usually higher and if you go above the 30% mark it affects your credit negatively.
Most report monthly to the credit bureaus, so generally it will take a month depending on the day they report, possibly two months if the change occurs just after the day they do.
What's the difference between this and the other secured card from Public Savings Bank?