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Why I Have Five Secured Credit Cards and Attempting To Get More.

Not applicable

Why I Have Five Secured Credit Cards and Attempting To Get More.

I currently have five(5) secured credit cards:


1. Bank of America Cash Rewards Platinum Plus Secured Mastercard.

2. USAA Secured American Express.

3. Capital One Platinum Secured Mastercard.

4. TD Banks Cash Secured Visa Credit Card.

5. Citi Secured Mastercard.


I was approved for, but didn't accept:


1. Credit One Credit Card.

2. Indigo Credit card.

3. Total Credit Card.

4. Green Dot Platinum Secured Visa Credit card

5. OpenSky Secured Visa and other secured credit cards.


Now, the first question you might be asking yourself, right at this moment is:


"Why do you have FIVE(5) Secured Credit Cards?"


Well, I had/have seventeen separate student loans, with each reporting late payments to all three credit bureaus, so having just ONE secured credit card, reporting just ONE On-Time Payment per month, wasn't going to offset those late payments and do anything for my score. So, now, or at least since June 2018, I have FIVE separate credit cards reporting  FIVE on-time payments monthly on my behalf, which increased my June 2018 440 FICO score to a January 2019 FICO score of 618, that's a 178 point increase in just under six months of systematically using this method.


I also have a Self Lender loan and a credit builder loan from two separate local credit unions.


By using these methods, I was able to get approved for a 2019 Honda Civic, something that would never had happened just six short months ago.


Your second question is, "Why are you seeking more secured credit cards?"


Because, with the exception of my USAA Secured American Express, each of my other secured credit cards will graduate into an unsecured credit card, just as long as I manage each of them properly. Plus, word via the grapevine is USAA is about to upgrade their two secured credit cards by allowing them to graduate to an unsecured credit card, which would be outstanding.


However, there are other banks that do the same, like BB&T, SunTrust, PNC, U.S. Bank and Wells Fargo, not to mention some hometown(local) banks that will do the same.


Now, your third question might be, "Why does that matter?"


Because, before I was able to get the Bank of America Cash Rewards Platinum Plus Secured MasterCard, I already had a checking account relationship with them for over ten years, never bounced a check, never overdraft my account, as a matter of fact, none of my accounts with them were ever negative.


So, when I applied for an unsecured card and was declined, I was instantly approved for Bank of America Cash Rewards Platinum Plus Secured MasterCard, which opened they door for USAA, Capital One, TD Bank and Citi to offer and approve me for their secured credit cards, that will either graduate or allow me to product change into an unsecured credit card.


As you can tell, I don't obtain secured credit cards that won't enhance my credit and/or graduate into an unsecured credit card, as I see that as a waste of time.


Your final question, might be, "What's your end game?"


Well, my end game is to build on my current personal/business relationship with these banks, eventually graduating to their unsecured credit cards, and product change into something similar to what American Express/Chase/Discover has to offer and keep those seven to ten credit cards as "KEEPER CARDS" and complete 12 to 18 months of Gardening(Letting my credit grow with those cards).


I said all that to say this, if you have several negatives(late payments, missed payments or collections) on your credit reports, with each reporting monthly, then in my humble opinion, one secured credit card isn't going to get you where you need to be fast enough.


Yes, I know people will tell you to get one or two at the most, and if you don't have bad credit and only have a thin credit file, then that is absolutely the route to go.


However, if you have  multiple headaches affecting your credit, then you need more than one positive tradeline helping you.


Finally, if you are going to get a secured credit card, please, please, please stay away from Predatory Lenders, like Credit One, Indigo, First Premier, Horizon Gold and more.


If I don't know anything about a secured credit card I'm attempting to obtain, I simply Google the card and/or watch YouTube videos and read the reviews.


Credit cards require "thorough" research, if not, you will fall victim to fee-harvester credit cards that are going to charge you a ridiculous amount of fees in your attempt to repair your credit, which isn't good, especially when there are quite a few better options out there.


I highly suggest local credit unions, where you can obtain both a secured savings loans(credit builder loan) AND a secured credit card, which will more than likely come without an annual fee, whuch in essence, outside of the deposit doesn't costs you one red cent to have in yoour wallet.


Just manage them properly and you will be good to go.

Message 1 of 24
Frequent Contributor

Re: Why I Have Five Secured Credit Cards and Attempting To Get More.

Sounds like you have a plan. Good work on your credit!
Message 2 of 24
Not applicable

Re: Why I Have Five Secured Credit Cards and Attempting To Get More.

Thank You.


But, honestly it was reading, watching and following the advice of experts like Credit Shifu, Ask Sebby and others on YouTube and just like I refuse to take any unnecessary courses while in college, i made certain that I wasn't going to obtain any worthless secured credit cards.


My situation is different, as I don't think many members of this site credit was as low as mine FICO(440 Experian) and I worked my way up from there.

Message 3 of 24
Valued Contributor

Re: Why I Have Five Secured Credit Cards and Attempting To Get More.

Totally agree, if having one good thing in the credit world is good. Having 5 good things on your credit is 5 times as good and those get better over time. I started collecting store cards, many were SCT (shoping cart trick) cards that were just new trade lines added to my report, at the start my AAoA sucked, adding a few more cards didn't do much damage. But now my AAoA is 10,000 percent bullet proof, add a new card and my AAoA goes down a month, once the cards are established,  CLI love is just a click away. 

Cards: Chase Southwest 20k & CSR 17k & CSP 10k & FNBO 30k Oregon Duck 5k, & AMEX BCP 32.5k & Amex Magnet 15k&amg; Hilton Surpass 7.5k & Delta Gold 12k & Zync NPSL, Fidelity AMEX 17k Commerce5.9k & Cash Forward 7.5k & Sams Club MC 20k, Paypal Extras MC 10k, Paypal Credit 7.25k CapOne Venture 15k, QS 2.5k, QS 750, Amazon 10k, Walmart 10k, Citi Simplicity 18k, Discover IT 23k and a nice stack of store cards.
Landmarkcu Personal Loan 10k
Message 4 of 24
Not applicable

Re: Why I Have Five Secured Credit Cards and Attempting To Get More.

Are you now current on your student loans?  Your score is only going to go so high if you are still delinquent.  In addition, your cards may not graduate with deliquencies reporting.

Message 5 of 24
Not applicable

Re: Why I Have Five Secured Credit Cards and Attempting To Get More.



People don't seem to understand that if one's credit is already horrible, then AAoA/Inquiries aren't going to make that much more of a difference.


Also, when one's credit score is so low, inquiries are a necessary evil.


If you don't apply for secured cards or credit builder loans, how on God's green earth are you going to be able to improve your credit?


Several experts act as if "EVERYBODY" is aiming for the Chase Trifecta cards and preach about "NOT" breaking Chase's 5/24 Rule, but not everyone is aiming for Chase cards. Would I love to have Chase's Trifecta credit cards and are they some of the best "KEEPER" cards on the market? Absolutely, but if Capital One, Discover, American Express, Bank of America, Citi, U.S. Bank and others are able to offer me, comparable credit cards "WITHOUT" a Chase-like 5/24 Rule, then I'm all for it. I'd get those comparable cards, garden them for two years then go after the Chase Trifecta.


That's just my opinion.


Am I wrong?

Message 6 of 24
Not applicable

Re: Why I Have Five Secured Credit Cards and Attempting To Get More.

My student loans are still in default, and I haven't disputed them from a credit point of view, but I'm contesting the amount owed with my alma mater and the Dept of Education. Once they get their heads and you-know-what together, then hopefully, due to their error in accounting, they'd pull those "Late Payments" back from the credit bureaus and allow me to start fresh. 


The issue is my G.I. Bill paid for 99% of my education, there is absolutely no reason, I should owe what they say I owe, even after graduate school, especially without one promissary note validating it!  As I made certain I only took out loans that would cover class and books, no extra loans for cars, clothes or partying. 


Also, 90% of my student loans are older than 24 months, some as old as 2013, which should in essence fall off in 2020, and if I'm not mistaken, late payments and collections older than 24 months don't impact your score, like a new deliquency that has occured within the last 24 months.


However, here's my greatest fear, that I work hard to get my score in the low to mid-700s, then Navient or the Dept of ED, report all seventeen separate students loans as deliquent again, or send them to another department within their building and "duplicate" report them that way.


But isn't that illegal?


That's like Verizon selling your unpaid cell phone bill to Collection Agency A, who keeps it for 6 years, 6 months, then they or Verizon send it to Collection Agency B, who attempts to restart the seven year clock.


Weird analogy, but I hope you or others understood and can give me some insight.


Thanks in advance.

Message 7 of 24
Valued Contributor

Re: Why I Have Five Secured Credit Cards and Attempting To Get More.

I'm not sure I agree with the whole strategy here, mainly because you are tying up a lot of money in deposits that could better be used somewhere else. but that is just my opinion. Having more tradelines even if they are positive does not necessarily offset the baddies. But they won't hurt either as long as you keep them positive and keep the reported utilization in check.


On the SL's if these are fed loans, they don't follow the same rules as a normal tradeline. They will stay on much longer than 7 or even 10 years if they are not resolved and the balance paid. Once you get the amounts right then its best to do a  rehab on those as that should get them to remove the lates. Otherwise, the lates will stay with you for 7 years. Depending on the severity of the lates, they can hurt a lot longer than 24 months. The consensus around here is 30-day lates don't hurt much after a couple of years, but the more severe ones like 90-120 pulldown your score for the entire time they are present.



Started Rebuild 4/2018: EX 616| TU 604| EQ 621

Current 5/28/20:

First Goal Score: 750+ Reached 3/2019

Next Goal all over 800
Message 8 of 24
Not applicable

Re: Why I Have Five Secured Credit Cards and Attempting To Get More.

Good job — check discover I graduated from a $300 secured card to $1000 unsecured in 7 months.
Message 9 of 24
Credit Mentor

Re: Why I Have Five Secured Credit Cards and Attempting To Get More.

Nice job. The cap1 won't grow beyond the graduation. You should have got a discover. It's basically a normal card, only secured. You can even pc it after the first month to the 5% IT. On top of that, you can add to the limit, up to $2500. One of your next hurdles will be getting higher limits and having a card that's already much higher than the rest will help with that.

Message 10 of 24
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