Bad Credit Credit Cards
Credit Cards With Bad Credit
It's hard to be without a credit card. Fortunately there are options, even for those with
Secured Credit Cards
Secured credit cards are hard to find in Australia, but they can sometimes be arranged privately with
a bank that issues credit cards, especially if you bank there. If approved, you would deposit into a savings
account the amount equal to your desired credit line. Should you mismanage the credit card, your deposit would be
applied to pay the balance. Credit cards can also be secured by home equity or another property.
If you manage a secured card responsibly and the payments are reported to credit bureaus, your credit rating will
improve and, over time, you may be eligible for an unsecured card. The biggest advantage of secured credit cards is
that they allow you to improve your credit rating.
Prepaid Credit Cards
Another option with bad credit is to get a prepaid card. Prepaid credit cards work exactly like other credit cards
with one big difference: You pay for purchases in advance. The credit line is determined by how much cash you have
loaded into the card at any given time. You can reload the card with more cash whenever you with.
Woolworth's issues a prepaid MasterCard and Canvas issues a prepaid Visa. Buy them off the shelf at Woolworth's,
Safeway, or Big W. There are also MasterCard gift cards available at Westpac.
The downside is that prepaid cards do nothing to improve credit, and there may be monthly service charges,
transaction fees, and start-up fees. There can also be transaction and balance limits.
On the upside, there are no interest charges or monthly payments to worry about. Prepaid credit cards can be used
for personal or business use and require no prior approval; anybody can have one. They can be used with all
merchants that accept Visa and MasterCard.
Unsecured Credit Cards
If someone with good credit is willing to cosign, even those with very bad credit can get an unsecured card. With
credit that's less than good (but not terrible), you might find unsecured cards that come with low credit limits,
high interest rates, annual fees and initial processing fees. Be sure to check the fine print. Unsecured cards can
arrive with substantial fee balances before you even make a purchase. Be sure to shop for the best interest rates
and lowest fees.
The advantage of unsecured cards is that you can rebuild credit by making payments on time. If after one year you
have used the card responsibly, you may be eligible for an unsecured credit card with better terms.
No Credit Credit Cards
If you're a student, The Commonwealth Bank Student Card has no annual fee and offers up to 55
interest-free days on purchases when the balance is paid in full every month. Credit limits are small, but student
cards are an excellent tool for building good credit. Other student credit cards may charge an annual fee and most
require a part-time income.