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Secured card advice/question: Citi vs. Orchard Bank


Secured card advice/question: Citi vs. Orchard Bank

Hi all,


I've been reading this forum for the last several weeks now and have gotten a lot of great advice... thanks for all the info! 


Here's my question: I'm 23 and for the first time, am able to do something about improving my credit history/score.  I've been researching secured credit cards and have set aside $900 for a deposit.  My first inclination is to apply for Citi's Secured Mastercard because of the great CD interest rate and the possibility of being offered an unsecured card after 18 months.  However, I found out on this forum that Citi does not report to the 3 CRA's during those first 18 months...which I guess doesn't help that much.  So, now I'm considering the Orchard Bank Secured Card... which does report immediately, but I'm sure doesn't offer a 4.17% APY on my deposit and more than likely, won't offer an unsecured card (plus, I hear some complaints about HSBC).  My credit scores are in the toilet (500s), so which card should I go with? Or should I perhaps split my deposit and apply for both? Any advice would be greatly appreciated! Thanks!

Message Edited by cavchic on 11-19-2009 10:03 AM
Message Edited by cavchic on 11-19-2009 10:05 AM
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Senior Contributor

Re: Secured card advice/question: Citi vs. Orchard Bank

Another thought...


Purchase a CD at your bank/credit union.  Some will let you buy one for as low as $500.


Take out a secured loan against the CD.  My credit union will let me do that.  


If the interest rate is 2% on the CD, then my loan interest rate is 4%.  The loan must be for the amount of the CD or less.  The loan must be paid off in full before the CD matures.  They did report my loans.


Ask if your bank offers that type of secured loan before you purchase a CD!  Smiley Happy 

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