- No annual fee
- High approval odds
- Good for rebuiding credit
- Excellent for repairing or building credit.
- Clear usage terms help you avoid unpleasant surprises when your statement arrives.
- Max $1,000 limit
- Requires security deposit
- No rewards
If you have a negative history with credit, or no credit at all, it may feel like access to credit cards is impossible. Secured credit cards, however, may be just what you’re looking for! A secured credit card is a card for someone with bad credit or no credit that is looking to build or rebuild credit for the future. The Capital One® Secured Mastercard® is a top secured credit card with no annual fee and flexible credit lines. Read on to learn how the Capital One® Secured Mastercard® works and if it is the right fit for your personal finance needs.
Capital One® Secured Mastercard® review
When your credit is below the “good” range of scores, you may find it difficult to get a new credit card. If you have been turned down for multiple credit cards, it is easy to get down on yourself. But there is a path forward that can help you quickly begin to raise your credit score without any annual fee.
The Capital One® Secured Mastercard®, like other secured credit cards, requires a security deposit to open a new account. This card requires a $49, $99, or $200 refundable deposit based on your credit history. This will give you access to a $200 credit line, though you can put down an additional deposit within 35 days for a credit line of up to $1,000. To boost your credit score as much as possible, it is a good idea to open an account with a $1,000 limit, if you can afford it, to keep your credit utilization ratio low.
After five months of perfect, on time payments, Capital One® may increase your credit line, making it easier to keep your balance low relative to your limit. Choose your own monthly bill due date so you never forget, giving you another easier route to improved credit.
Most secured credit cards come with annual fees and restrictions, but the Capital One® Secured Mastercard® is more flexible and designed to help you get access to a card easily to fix your credit. It also comes loaded with many Platinum Mastercard® benefits you can only dream about with competing secured credit cards.
To protect you from embarrassment, the card does not say “secured” anywhere on it. It looks like any other Mastercard® credit card from Capital One®. After using it and making 100% on time payments for a period of time, you may find your credit score increased enough to qualify for a non-secured card, which can help you access premium cards with valuable benefit and rewards programs.
Capital One® Secured Mastercard® rewards and perks
This credit card does not come with a major rewards program to earn cash back, miles, or points. The major “reward” from this card is that it has no annual fee, contrary to what most secured credit cards offer.
Capital One® Secured Mastercard® credit card benefits
Most secured cards have few if any benefits, but this card is not a typical secured credit card. It comes with several useful benefits, particularly when traveling or shopping for expensive items.
For travel, the Capital One® Secured Mastercard® offers auto rental insurance, travel accident insurance, travel assistance services, and roadside assistance. When using your card for shopping, it gives you extended warranty coverage at no additional cost and price protection in case the cost goes down within 60 days of purchase and the retailer won’t refund the difference.
Like other Capital One® credit cards, this card has access to a great mobile and online banking experience, fraud protection, and useful tools to make sure you never miss a payment.
Capital One® Secured Mastercard® costs and fees
While this is a strong offering for those looking to rebuild their credit, it isn’t without some costs. There is no annual fee, but the card charges variable rate interest. This APR is the same for cash advances, though it is best to avoid costly cash advances on any card, particularly a secured one.
Cash advances cost 3% ($10 minimum) and late or returned payments have a flat fee.
The card requires a security deposit, which is refundable when you close your account with a $0 balance. Credit lines are available up to $1,000, and minimum credit lines start at $200.
Does the Capital One® Secured Mastercard® credit card make sense for me?
If you have no credit or bad credit, the Capital One® Secured Mastercard® is an excellent offering. If you qualify for a card that offers stronger rewards programs, that may be a better decision. But if you don’t and are solely interested in secured credit cards, this card is at the top of the pack. With no annual fee and no fees for regular use, this card will have you on track to a new and improved credit score in no time.
Application Process: Apply online and pay the required security deposit - either $49, $99, or $200. This is a refundable deposit based on your credit history.
Rewards: No rewards - this is just a basic credit card designed to help you repair or establish credit.
Bonus offers: There are no bonus offers, but cardholders have the chance to increase their credit line after 5 consecutive on-time payments.
Annual fee: None.
- No annual fee, and all the credit building benefits with responsible card use
- Unlike a prepaid card, it builds credit when used responsibly, with regular reporting to the 3 major credit bureaus
- You will get an initial $200 credit line after making a security deposit of $49, $99, or $200, determined based on your creditworthiness
- Get access to a higher credit line after making your first 5 monthly payments on time with no additional deposit needed
- Easily manage your account 24/7 with online access, by phone or using our mobile app
- It's a credit card accepted at millions of locations worldwide