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Your Path to Building a Credit History with a Secured Credit Card

Last Updated: October 3, 2023
3 min read

Key Points About: secured credit cards

  1. You usually don’t need a credit score to get a secured credit card.

  2. A secured credit card requires a security deposit equal to the credit limit the issuer approves you for.

  3. You can build a credit history, graduate to an unsecured credit card, and get your deposit back by making on-time payments and managing your other credit accounts responsibly.

When it comes to financial stability, a secured credit card might be able to help you reach your financial goals. Secured credit cards offer a good option for people with lower credit scores because there’s no credit score required to apply1 for most secured cards.

Did you know?

By using a secured credit card, you can demonstrate responsible credit management, such as making on-time payments and keeping your balances low. As long as your credit card issuer reports your payment activity to the three major credit bureaus, you can build your credit history with responsible use.2 And building a good credit history can help you secure loans like home and car loans and may even help you qualify for better terms, including lower interest rates.

Learn More About Discover Secured Credit Cards

How secured credit cards work

Applying for a secured card is similar to the application process for traditional cards—you’ll fill out an application with your basic financial information and give your permission to perform a credit check. But unlike other credit cards, if approved, you’ll be required to provide a security deposit equal to the amount the credit issuer approves you for. This deposit minimizes the risk for the issuer should you default on your debt.

Once you get your card, you can use your secured credit card just like a traditional credit card—you’ll make purchases up to your credit limit and receive a monthly statement with your payment and due date information.

Secured credit cards typically offer a refundable deposit and allow users to earn rewards while working towards qualifying for an unsecured credit card.

Did you know?

Using a secured credit card responsibly can set you on a path to getting an unsecured credit card. In fact, you can often graduate to an unsecured credit card after a series of on-time payments. With the Discover it® Secured Credit Card, you can upgrade to an unsecured card after 6 consecutive on-time payments and maintaining good status on all your credit accounts.3

Follow the path below to learn more about secured cards and how they may be able to help you start building a credit history.

What is a secured credit card?Is my credit score important?Building your credit should not be intimidatingWhat you need to know about the security depositLearn how to use your secured card responsiblyHow to graduate to an unsecured credit cardShould you apply for a secured card?You are ready to apply for a secured credit card


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