5 Best Credit Cards For Credit Scores Of 580 Or Below

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Having a low credit score can be frustrating, but know that many other Americans face the same reality. An estimated one-third of Americans have a subprime credit score, which is a score that’s under 670, according to Experian. By having subprime credit, you may be limited to loans with a higher interest rate and you’ll find it harder to be approved for a travel credit card of your choosing.

If you have a credit score below 580 you’re considered to have “poor” or “bad” credit, which limits your financing options even more. However, there are plenty of credit cards available for consumers with less than perfect credit, including the ones we mention in this article. Keep in mind that these aren’t the highest reward-earning credit cards on the market, but they can still offer valuable benefits.

That said, by using them responsibly for some time, you’ll be able to increase your credit score and eventually apply for a travel rewards credit card or cash-back credit card that offers better perks and rewards.

Below, Select rounds up the best credit cards that provide people with poor credit a better shot at qualification.

Best credit cards for a credit score of 580 or lower

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Best for cash back

One way to get approved for a credit card if you have a low credit score is to sign up for a secured card, like the Discover it® Secured Credit Card, which topped our list of best secured credit cards. The card has no annual fee and doesn’t charge foreign transaction fees, which makes it great for travel, plus it earns rewards.

Cardholders earn 2% cash back at gas stations and restaurants on up to $ 1,000 in combined purchases each quarter, then 1%. Plus, you’ll earn unlimited 1% cash back on all other purchases. And as a welcome bonus, Discover will automatically match all the cash back you’ve earned at the end of your first year. So if you earned $ 100 cash back in the first year, Discover will match that $ 100, and you’ll end up with a total of $ 200.

Discover it® Secured Credit Card

On Discover’s secure site

  • Rewards

    Earn 2% cash back at Gas Stations and Restaurants on up to $ 1,000 in combined purchases each quarter. Plus, earn unlimited 1% cash back on all other purchases – automatically.

  • Welcome bonus

    Discover will match all the cash back you’ve earned at the end of your first year

  • Annual fee

  • Intro APR

  • Regular APR

  • Balance transfer fee

    3% intro balance transfer fee, up to 5% fee on future balance transfers (see terms) *

  • Foreign transaction fee

  • Credit needed

Best for building credit

The Petal® 2 “Cash Back, No Fees” Visa® Credit Card is a great pick if you’re trying to increase your credit score. You don’t need to have an established credit score to apply for this card, and best of all, it reports to all three major bureaus – Experian, Equifax and TransUnion – to help you build your credit history. Cardholders also earn at least 1% cash back on all eligible purchases. The earning rate actually jumps to 1.25% cash back after six on-time payments and increases again to 1.5% cash back after 12 on-time payments. This card also has no annual fee or foreign transaction fees.

Best for no security deposit

The Credit One Bank® Platinum Visa® for Rebuilding Credit is a solid choice for consumers with less than perfect credit. While this card is secured through a deposit, you can still earn rewards on specific purchases. As you spend on the card, you’ll earn 1% cash back on eligible gas and grocery purchases, monthly mobile phone, internet, cable, and satellite TV services. And according to Credit One Bank, your account will be regularly reviewed for potential credit line increases.

However, the card has a $ 75 annual fee the first year, and then $ 99 annually.

Credit One Bank® Platinum Visa® for Rebuilding Credit

Information about the Credit One Bank® Platinum Visa® for Rebuilding Credit has been collected independently by Select and has not been reviewed or provided by the issuer of the card prior to publication.

  • Rewards

    1% cash back rewards on eligible gas and groceries as well as your monthly mobile phone, internet, cable, and satellite TV services

  • Welcome bonus

  • Annual fee

    $ 75 for the first year. After that, $ 99 annually (billed at $ 8.25 per month)

  • Intro APR

  • Regular APR

  • Balance transfer fee

  • Foreign transaction fee

  • Credit needed

Best for secured card with a low deposit

The Capital One Platinum Secured Credit Card is worth considering if you can only put down a small amount for the security deposit. If you qualify for the low $ 49 or $ 99 deposits, you’ll still receive a $ 200 credit limit.

The card is also good for travelers since there are no foreign transaction fees, meaning you will not incur any fees for using the card to pay for your expenses while you’re traveling outside of the United States. The card also has no annual fee and features automatic reviews to increase your credit line that can start as soon as six months into your card membership.

Capital One Platinum Secured Credit Card

Information about the Capital One Platinum Secured Credit Card has been collected independently by Select and has not been reviewed or provided by the issuer of the cards prior to publication.

  • Rewards

  • Welcome bonus

  • Annual fee

  • Intro APR

    N / A for purchases and balance transfers

  • Regular APR

  • Balance transfer fee

  • Foreign transaction fee

  • Credit needed

Pros

  • No annual fee
  • $ 49, $ 99 or $ 200 refundable deposit
  • No fee charged on purchases made outside the US
  • Flexibility to change your payment due date

Cons

  • High variable APR
  • No rewards program

Best for international students

If you’re an international student who’s currently studying in the United States, you may have noticed how difficult it can be to get a credit card without having a social security number. If you find yourself in this predicament, the Deserve® EDU Mastercard for Students could be a great solution since you don’t need a social security number to be approved. The card lets you earn 1% cash back on all purchases and comes with benefits such as a year of Amazon Prime membership and cell phone protection. It also has no annual fee or foreign transaction fees.

Deserve® EDU Mastercard for Students

  • Rewards

    1% cash back on all purchases

  • Welcome bonus

  • Annual fee

  • Intro APR

  • Regular APR

  • Balance transfer fee

    N / A, balance transfers are not available

  • Foreign transaction fee

  • Credit needed

Bottom line

The road to building (or re-building) a solid credit score may be long, but with responsible credit use, you’ll be able to do this fairly quickly. And because your credit score is not as high as you’d like it to be, that means there’s room for improvement. To help raise your credit score, consider using a credit monitoring service such as CreditWise or Chase Credit Journey to track details about why your credit score is what it is.

These services also provide tips for how you can improve it going forward – you might be shocked to find a mistake or two on your credit report, which may end up being what’s hurting your score. Also, consider Experian Boost which allows you to connect your utility and telecom accounts to your Experian credit report, which can potentially raise your credit score. * Plus the service is completely free to use.

Most importantly, before you sign up for a new credit card, be sure you have a detailed budget in place. Without taking this extra step, you could find yourself overspending with a credit card and landing even deeper into debt, which could lower your credit score even more.

FAQ’s

Below, Select takes a closer look at some frequently asked questions from consumers regarding credit card recommendations for people with less than perfect credit.

Can I get a credit card with a credit score of 580?

Yes, you can, but you’ll need to apply for specific cards that accept applicants with low credit scores. Also, be sure to analyze your monthly budget to see if it’s the best decision for your financial needs at this time.

Can I get a credit card if my credit is poor?

Yes, however, your options will be slim. But if you start with one of the cards mentioned above, you can quickly build your score back to qualify for unsecured credit cards with great benefits.

Can I get a credit card with a credit score of 570?

Yes, but you may find your options are more limited toward secured credit cards.

Our methodology

To determine which credit cards offered the best value for people with poor credit, Select analyzed the most popular credit cards offered by banks, financial companies and credit unions that we determined to have requirements for poor credit scores.

We compared each card’s range of features, including the annual fee, rewards programs, introductory and standard APRs, balance transfer fees, welcome bonuses and foreign transaction fees, as well as other factors such as required credit scores and customer reviews, when available.

Select teamed up with location intelligence firm Esri. The company’s data development team provided the most up-to-date and comprehensive consumer spending data based on the 2019 Consumer Expenditure Surveys from the Bureau of Labor Statistics. You can read more about their methodology here.

Esri’s data team created a sample annual budget of approximately $ 22,126 in retail spending. The budget includes six main categories: groceries ($ 5,174), gas ($ 2,218), dining out ($ 3,675), travel ($ 2,244), utilities ($ 4,862) and general purchases ($ 3,953). General purchases include items such as housekeeping supplies, clothing, personal care products, prescription drugs and vitamins, and other vehicle expenses.

When analyzing these cards, we did not calculate the estimated rewards a cardholder could earn. When you’re a student or building (or rebuilding) your credit history, your focus should be on developing good financial habits, such as paying your balance on time and in full, and not optimizing the points you can earn.

* Results may vary. Some may not see improved scores or approval odds. Not all lenders use Experian credit files, and not all lenders use scores impacted by Experian Boost.

Petal 2 Visa Credit Card issued by WebBank, Member FDIC.

For rates and fees of the Discover it® Secured Credit Card, click here.

Editorial Note: Opinions, analyzes, reviews or recommendations expressed in this article are those of the Select editorial staff’s alone, and have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by any third party.

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