5 Credit Cards for Improving You Credit in New York City

If you’re looking to rebuild credit or improve your credit score, it can be hard to know which credit card to apply for. You might not qualify for a competitive interest rate on an unsecured card and might be struggling to find the right secured credit card that fits your needs.

Luckily, we’ve researched credit cards for New York City residents that offer low rates and some handy additional features that make them perfect if you want to rebuild your credit.

Municipal Credit Union’s Secured Visa

Obtaining a secured credit card and making on-time payments is an excellent way to rebuild your credit. But many secured credit cards charge you an annual fee.

This is not the case with the Municipal Credit Union Secured Visa, which has no annual fee and a low 11.90% APR on purchases. You select your credit line, ranging from $300 to $5,000, and deposit that amount into an account with the credit union.

The funds will be held in a dividend-earning 18-month Secured Visa Share Certificate account. Even though you can’t access these funds, t’s good to know that you can actually earn interest on your deposit with this account.

Family First Federal Credit Union’s Share Secured Visa

Family First Federal Credit Union’s Secured Visa card is designed for members looking to establish or rebuild credit.

The card has no annual fee and offers a low interest rate on par with unsecured cards, at 10.40% APR. In addition, cardholders also get free travel accident life insurance coverage of $250,000.

Family First Federal Credit Union provides credit reporting to the three major credit bureaus, so you can be assured that when you make your payments on time your credit history will improve.

Capital One’s Secured MasterCard

The Capital One Secured MasterCard is somewhat of a hybrid between a secured credit card and a traditional, unsecured credit card.

Like a standard secured card, you need to deposit funds as a security against your credit line. How the Capital One card differs is that, depending on your creditworthiness, you can be given a credit limit higher than your original security deposit. So with a minimum security deposit of $49, you can receive $200 of credit. Deposit more and your limit increases, up to $3,000.

The card does come with an annual fee of $29, and an APR of 22.9%, which is the highest of the cards highlighted.

Bank of America’s BankAmericard Secured Credit Card

New York City residents wanting to build credit will love this card. Bank of America actively shares your credit information with the three major credit-reporting agencies – helping you rebuild your credit with responsible use.

And, if after 12 months your credit score has improved, you can apply to have your security deposit returned and your credit card upgraded to a regular, unsecured card.

Bank of America’s secured Visa comes with a low $39 annual fee and a 20.24% APR. You can apply for a credit limit between $300 and $4,900.

A great benefit of being a Bank of America cardholder is that you get free entry to a range of attractions around the country through the Museums on Us program. In New York City, cardholders can get free access to the Metropolitan Museum of Art, the Bronx Zoo and the New York Aquarium, among others.

Wells Fargo’s Secured Card

The Wells Fargo Secured Visa card is a great option if you are looking to establish or rebuild credit. All permanent residents are eligible to apply and it doesn’t matter whether you have poor credit or no credit history to speak of. And, with plenty of branches and ATMs across New York, it’s easy to manage your Wells Fargo card responsibly.

Once accepted, cardholders will need to deposit an amount ranging from $300 to $10,000 into a non-interest-bearing account, which then acts as security against your credit limit.

The card comes with an annual fee of $25 and an 18.99% APR on purchases. Cardholders also have access to free online credit education programs to help them manage their credit wisely. In addition, Wells Fargo will periodically review your secured card account to determine if you are eligible for an unsecured card and to have your security deposit returned.

Photo credit: Sean MacEntee