If you’re a consumer with an average credit rating who is looking for a new credit card offer that will give you greater spending flexibility and perhaps even a few perks, there are a large number of options available to you.
Credit card issuers are now expanding their lending criteria for all accounts, meaning that if you have average credit, you likely have access to a number of accounts you might not have been able to tap before. Therefore, you might want to start thinking about the various options you have available to you, and what each might mean for your financial situation.
Capital One® Cash Rewards – Average Credit
Capital One® Classic Platinum Credit Card
Capital One® Platinum Credit Card
Capital One® MasterCard®
Capital One® Cash Rewards for Newcomers
VISA® Platinum from Credit One Bank®
Applied Bank® Secured Visa® Gold Credit Card
First Progress Platinum Secured MasterCard® Credit Card
Walmart MoneyCardSM MasterCard®Prepaid Card
Green Dot® Gold PrePaid Visa®
There are a number of account types that might seem like a good idea for you, including:
- Low APR credit cards
- No annual fee credit cards
- Rewards credit cards
Each comes with its own benefits and drawbacks.
A low APR credit card will typically allow you to borrow and carry a balance without paying sizable interest charges for doing so. Sometimes, this is the result of an introductory rate that goes away after a certain period of time – which can be anywhere from six to 18 months – and in other cases, the low APR is ongoing for the life of the account. The drawback of these, though, are that cards with low introductory rates typically carry higher ones when the first period expires, and those with low ongoing rates typically carry annual fees that might make the account more troublesome.
No annual fee
This type of card can be another great way to save money, as it will allow you to control an account without paying for the privilege of doing so every year. No annual fee cards are usually ideal for use in emergencies, as you can put them away in a drawer and not worry about getting a bill for them until you use them. However, these cards often carry higher interest rates than those with annual fees.
Earning cash back, points or miles for every purchase you make can be a great way to save money on your credit card account. However, in many cases, these rewards credit cards carry higher interest rates and annual fees than accounts with fewer benefits, and these can cancel out the savings you enjoy from your rewards program.
Unfortunately, balance transfer credit cards are available only to those with excellent credit.
For any of the above account types, you should review your finances and past borrowing habits to figure out the best credit card deals for you. This might also include doing a little bit of math after reviewing a number of offers to see what type of card will work best given your unique financial situation and needs. For instance, if you tend not to carry a balance over from one month to the next, you probably will not need to worry about the interest rate on a credit card very much, and might want to focus more on one with no annual fee. Similarly, if the amount of spending you do will earn you enough points, cash back or miles to outreach your interest charges and annual fees, you might want a rewards card.
Finally, it’s important to remember that you should think of credit cards for those with fair credit as a kind of stepping-stone. Your goal should be getting the best possible credit score you can, and if you manage this account correctly, your score will likely improve considerably, to the point that you might be able to qualify for new cards down the road that will be even more beneficial.
Compare First – Apply Second
This might sound difficult or confusing, but to get your best deal, you’ll need to make a point-by-point comparison of several appropriate credit card offers before you apply for a credit card.
Consider using the CreditCardApplication.com Search Engine or credit card comparison matrix (found on the home page). These tools are designed to make finding and comparing Yourbest credit card offers easier.
So compare first, and then complete a single credit card application that best meets your specific needs.