WHAT IS THE CREDIT BUILDER SECURED CARD
What is a Secured Credit Card?
Secured Cards are credit cards that require a savings account to be established as collateral for the credit card. They are an excellent way to establish a positive credit history and are designed especially for people with no credit history, or who have experienced past credit problems.
How do I get a Secured Card?
You may apply directly at a branch or on-line. In some situations, we may recommend a Secured Card for you if you do not qualify for an Unsecured Card.
How can I qualify for a Secured Card?
Even if you have no credit history, or your credit history is less than perfect, you have an excellent opportunity to be approved for a secured card. These are our general guidelines:
- Legal age in the state of your residence for a credit card,
- Reside in the United States, and
- Have the funds available to deposit into the secured savings account.
Can a parent be on a card with a minor (someone under 18 years of age)?
No. State laws govern the minimum age for a credit card.
What is the age requirement for this card?
18 or older.
How is this product different than a prepaid card?
How They're Alike - Both secured credit cards and prepaid cards require you to deposit money before you can use them. Both can be used at places like grocery stores, gas pumps, etc. to make purchases.
How They're Different - A secured credit card requires you to make a security deposit against the credit limit before you can be approved for the card. Your security deposit is placed in a savings account and kept there until your card is converted to an unsecured credit or until you close the account.
Secured credit cards work much like regular credit cards. Secured cardholders are responsible for timely payments, just like regular cardholders. This is a good thing, because it teaches good repayment habits and helps to establish a positive payment history - a very important part of establishing or rebuilding credit. Purchases made with a secured credit card go against your revolving credit limit. When you pay off your credit card balance, your available credit goes up again, just like a regular credit card. The security deposit is required because you're a more risky borrower.
Prepaid cards are different. There's no credit limit for a prepaid card. You make a deposit onto the card and it goes into an account. When you use the card for purchases, the balance is deducted from your balance. Once you spend up your deposit, you must redeposit money before you can spend again.
Is Credit Builder a personal product or can it be in the name of a business too?
The credit builder secured card product is designed to help individuals establish or rebuild their credit score so this is a personal product.
Is it possible to have a joint credit card?
Yes. If the savings account is a joint account, two cards will be issued. Both parties must be on the credit application.
SETTING UP YOUR CREDIT BUILDER SECURED CARD
What will my Credit Limit be if I am approved for a Secured Card?
Your credit limit will be equal to the balance in your credit builder savings account.
What is the turnaround time for Secured Credit Card approval?
Normally 4-5 business days.
When will I receive my card?
Approximately 2 weeks after your application has been approved.
Can I use a savings account I already have to secure my Credit Builder card?
No. A specific savings product for the Credit Builder program has been created and needs to be used as the collateral account.
PAYING YOUR BILL
Can I set my own payment date to be billed each month?
Yes. If you are a new customer, you can chose either the 1st or 16th of each month as your payment date. Once the date is set, it cannot be changed.
Will I receive a paper credit card statement?
Yes. Customers will receive a monthly statement detailing their activity for that month and the payment amount due.
Can customers make payments at a branch?
What are the ways I can pay my bill electronically?
- Bill Pay from Online Banking
- Auto pay can be selected at the time of application.
(If you chose this payment method after the application process has been completed, you will need to write a letter stating how you would like the payment deducted from your checking account. The letter needs to be specific to the payment amount and needs to be signed and faxed to 866-912-3704.)
MANAGING YOUR ACCOUNT
What is the interest rate on the Savings account?
The interest rate will follow the rate paid on other savings accounts, currently 0.05%.
How do I avoid paying interest?
We will not impose interest charges if you have paid your previous balance in full by the due date each month. Each due date will be at least 25 days after the close of each billing cycle.
Can I add to my Savings Account to increase my Credit Limit?
Yes. At any time after your account is opened, you may make deposits of $50 or more, to add to your secured savings account. Each addition to your savings account will increase your credit limit dollar for dollar up to the $3,000 maximum.
How often can I add money to my saving account?
As often as you like in increments of $50 or more.
How soon after a deposit into my savings account is made will my credit line increase?
You will see your credit limit increase approximately 1 to 2 business days following the day of the deposit.
Can I withdraw money from my Savings Account?
No. The savings account acts as collateral for your Secured Card, so you may not withdraw money from the account while your credit card is secured regardless of whether or not you have a balance on your card.
Can I use this saving account as my Savings Cents account?
No. We recommend you open an second savings account and link that account with the savings cents program.
How do I know if my credit score is improving?
With our Identify Protection product, you can receive a consolidated credit report with information from the three major credit reporting agencies - Experian, Equifax and TransUnion. Please see your local banker or our web site for more information.
Do you report to the credit bureaus?
Yes. We report your actual repayment history to all three bureaus.
Do you report to the credit bureaus if I stop making payments even though you already have my money?
Yes. We report your actual repayment history to all three bureaus so we strongly encourage customers to use the card and make monthly payments to improve their credit score.
How do I move to an unsecured credit card?
We periodically review your credit score to monitor your progress. Should your score qualify you for an unsecured card, we will contact you and review your options.
FEES AND PENALTIES
Is there a grace period on monthly payments?
Yes, if we receive your payment within 10 days of the due date, no penalties will be applied.
Is there a Penalty APR rate?
Is there an annual fee?
Yes. The annual fee is $25/year.
Is there a Transfer fee for moving my balances from higher credit cards?
No. Moving your balances from higher rate credit cards is free.
Is there a Cash advance fee?
Yes. We charge $10 or 3% of the transaction (whichever is greater) for cash advances.
Is there a currency conversion transaction fee?
Yes. 1.0% of each transaction in U.S. dollars if currency conversion occurs.
Is there an International transaction fee?
Yes. 0.8% of each transaction in U.S. dollars if no currency conversion occurs.
Is there a Penalty fee?
Yes. A Late payment fee of up to $25 will be accessed if your payments is received by us more than 10 days after its due date.
Is there a returned payment fee?
Yes. Up to $25.
Is there a fee for paper statements?
While your monthly transaction statement is free, this account requires you enroll in e.Statements for the savings account. If you elect not to enroll, you will be charged $2 per quarter to receive a paper statement.
What is the interest rate on the Credit Builder Credit Card?
The card has a variable APR of 20.99%(Prime + 17.74%).
Is there a minimum interest charge?
Yes. If we impose an interest charge, the amount will never be less than $0.50.
What is the Prime Rate?
The Prime Rate is the Index used to calculate the interest rates on variable rate accounts. For each billing cycle, variable APRs are calculated by adding a specified amount ("Spread") to the U.S. prime rate published in the Money Rates table of The Wall Street Journal that is in effect on the last day of the month ("Prime Rate"). If the Prime Rate changes, the new APRs will take effect on the first day of your billing cycle beginning in the next month.
What is a Variable Rate?
A variable rate is a rate that can change with the market based on an Index (such as the Prime Rate).
Can the Prime Rate go up or down?
Yes, the Prime Rate can go up or down.
If the Prime Rate goes up or down, when does it affect my account?
If the Prime Rate changes, the new APRs will take effect on the first day of your billing cycle beginning in the next month.