When your credit is bad, card issuers don’t want to give you a credit card. When you can’t get credit, it’s hard to rebuild that all-important credit history.
It’s a catch-22 – you need a way to show that you can pay your bills, and unless you show that you can pay your bills, no one is going to trust you. It’s a shameful situation, but bad credit isn’t something to be ashamed of; it’s something to be fixed.
If you’ve had trouble in the past and wanted to repair your history, bad credit credit cards are one of the tools that can help you put your things back on the road to recovery. It can help you rebuild your payment history upon which much of your credit rating is based.
So what is a bad credit credit card?
There are many reasons that you might apply for one of these. If you’ve had trouble paying off accounts before, the record of your late and missed payments ends up on your credit record.
When you apply for finance, the card issuers check your credit record to see if you’re the type of person who typically pays bills (as well as finding out many other things, like if you have enough income, and where you live). When you have, issuers are understandably wary of granting you further credit.
At the same time, there’s money to be made in extending you finance, and these companies aren’t well known for shying away from an opportunity to make money.
It presents them with a dilemma, and the solution to that dilemma put less emphasis on the risk with high-interest rates on the repayments which offsets the risks of lending money to people who don’t have excellent credit.
How do bad credit cards help you repair your credit?
Generally, when people look for a credit card, they’re looking for low-interest rates. Most applicants wouldn’t even think about taking a card with an APR above 12-15%.
The best offers, usually reserved for those folks who’ve never missed or been late with a payment, sports APRs in the single digits these days. Most people would consider options with APRs above 17% to be uncompetitive.
When you’ve been in debt and are trying to recover your good credit, though, issuers aren’t going to offer you their best rates. Most won’t offer you cards at all. When no one lets you borrow money, it’s a little difficult to prove that you can pay it back, yes?
When you’re in that situation, the solution is bad credit credit cards. Despite higher interest rates averaging 39% if you borrow a little each month, but pay it off completely each month you’ll re-establish yourself as a reliable borrower, and your credit rating will improve.
Of course, the key to using cards as tools that get your credit back on track is in the way that you use them. These are the basic rules to repair your credit:
1. Only charge what you can afford to repay within a month.
2. Pay off the entire account each month.
3. Pay the account as soon as it comes in each month, so your payments are never late.
4. Be sure that your payments are being reported to the credit reporting agencies.
Some bad credit credit cards are better than others. Before you apply, take the time to compare rates and fees and choose the option that is the best for your needs.
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