Having bad credit won't prevent you from getting a credit card, but it will make it more difficult. Struggling with less than perfect credit? These cards are designed to help.
Like everything else you buy, credit has a price tag and it pays to comparison shop. With the Internet, you can now compare local credit offers with those from financial institutions around the nation.
The Equal Credit Opportunity Act protects you when dealing with anyone who regularly offers credit, including banks, finance companies, stores, credit card companies and credit unions. When you apply for credit, a creditor may not:
Tips & Warnings
Donít confuse debit cards with credit cards. Debit cards may look like credit cards, but they act like checks. Once the debit card is used, the amount is immediately deducted from your checking or savings account. The debit card eliminates the need for carrying cash, but it does not extend credit. Debit cards may be used as guaranteed check cashing cards. In contrast, credit cards defer your payment until you are billed.
Some cards can be used to withdraw money from automatic teller machines (ATM). Beware of fees eating up your money if you use your ATM card frequently for small withdrawals. Some financial institutions charge their customers a set fee for a certain number of transactions. Other institutions charge for each ATM use. If you get cash at an ATM machine that is not part of your financial institutionís network, the fees could be as much as $6 per transaction.
Parents might want to introduce their children (ages 13 to 17) to prepaid debit cards such as Pocket Card, American Express Cobaltcard, and Visa Buxx, by funding a card that has a spending limit established by parents. Parents supply the funds and can use the cards to teach their children how to track how the money is spent. This parent-controlled card is designed to help parents teach their teens about using credit in a controlled environment.