Unsecured Credit Cards for Fair Credit

If you know that your credit rating is not very good – that you fall into the fair credit score category with a score of between 600 and 660 – you probably also know that getting an unsecured credit card may be no easy feat. Lenders are tightening their requirements for granting credit, which makes even finding unsecured credit cards for fair credit difficult, let alone actually qualifying for them. However it is not Mission Impossible, there are still some great lenders who are willing to issue an unsecured credit card to those with fair credit. You simply need to put a little extra work into your search for the right credit card.

How Did You End Up with Fair Credit in the First Place?

Some people are rather surprised when they discover that the credit bureaus have assigned them a fair credit rating. They pay their bills, on time for the most part and do not have any outstanding debts that they are too far behind on and certainly none they have defaulted on. To these people why they don’t have a better credit score can be puzzling.

The unfortunate fact is that paying your bills is not always enough to secure you a good credit score. Just one late payment can drop your credit score by more than a few points, so if you make just two or three late payments a year it can impact your credit score considerably. It may also be that the bills you are paying unfortunately do little to impact your credit score. A mortgage or car loan payment is always reported to the credit bureaus but utility bills like electricity and cable bill payments rarely are.

Often the only way to build up your score if you have fair credit is to demonstrate responsible use of a credit card, a bit off a Catch 22 situation if you cannot find a lender willing to issue you one.

Secured Credit Cards Vs. Unsecured Credit Cards

For most people who have what is classified as bad or poor credit (below 600) a secured credit card is often their only option. A secured credit card is one that requires a card holder make a security deposit into a savings account designated by the credit card issuer as collateral against possible unpaid credit card bills in the future. The credit limit is usually the sames as, or close to, the security deposit amount and secured credit cards often have rather high annual fees attached to them which eat into the available credit. On the upside on time payments are reported to the credit bureaus to help rebuild the cardholders credit profile.

If you have fair credit though you may not have to settle for a secured credit card. Listed below are some unsecured credit cards for fair credit that can usually be obtained by those with fair credit.

Capital One Standard Platinum Visa

This is a basic credit card offering that may even be granted to applicants whose credit is a shade below 600 if their debt to income ratio is not too high. Capital One are fast becoming on of the most popular credit card lenders in the US in large part due to the fact that the carious credit cards they offer have reasonable rates, some have great rewards programs attached to them and the customer support offered to all cardholders is usually highly rated by everyone who deals with customer support staff.

The Capital One Standard Platinum Visa does have an annual fee of $19 attached to it but that fee is waived for the first year. The 24.9 APR is a little high but that is to be expected for a credit card granted to those with fair credit.

Those who have a credit rating of around 630-650 may also qualify for a Capital One No Hassle Rewards Card which does offer cash back benefits but it is the capital One Standard Visa card that most people with fair credit will be able to qualify for.

Orchard Bank Visa and MasterCards

Orchard Bank credit cards have been around for a number of years now but a recent take over by the giant HSBC bank has seen the offerings improve. All of the cards offered by Orchard Bank are designed to build or rebuild credit but there are different levels of both MasterCard and Visa cards that are granted to applicants depending on their individual credit profile.

To obtain an Orchard Bank credit card of any kind an applicant has to fill out a secure online application. Once this is completed they are instantly informed which of the Orchard Bank credit cards they are approved for. The highest level – the Platinum Orchard Bank Visa or MasterCard – is the card most people with a fair credit score will be offered. The Platinum card does not have a processing fee attached to it like the other Orchard Bank credit cards do but there is a $39 annual fee although it is waived for the first year. The APR on the card is accessed at 14.90 or 19.90%depending upon both credit history and later payment history on the card itself.

It is up to the applicant if they opt for a MasterCard or a Visa product. Both are usually accepted wherever credit cards are so which you choose is really a matter of personal preference.