Best Credit Cards for Bad Credit of September 2021

The most important thing to look for in a credit card for bad credit is its fees, but you should also check its APR, its minimum and maximum security deposits, and what kind of credit limit you can expect. Here’s an explanation of each item.


Most credit cards have fees, but what you don’t want are unavoidable fees. Fees for cash advances or balance transfers shouldn’t scare you off from a specific credit card — you can easily avoid both by not making those types of transactions.

Fees that should make you think twice are annual fees, monthly maintenance fees, and any other regular fees the card issuer charges no matter what. These are expenses you don’t need, especially from a card that probably doesn’t have many benefits.


Ideally, you’ll pay your full statement balance and never incur interest charges. But it’s also nice to have a credit card that won’t gouge you in interest if you ever need to carry a balance.

Minimum/maximum security deposit

With secured credit cards, you should check what the minimum and maximum security deposit amounts are. The one that’s more important for you depends on how much you have saved for a security deposit.

If you don’t have much saved, you’ll need to ensure you can pay a card’s minimum deposit amount. If you have solid savings and you’d like to pay more up front for a higher credit limit, then you’ll need a card that allows a high maximum deposit.

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Credit limit

If possible, you should research the credit limits a card offers. This information is usually available with secured credit cards, but you can sometimes get it for an unsecured card as well.

You don’t need a ton of available credit. But if your credit limit is too low, it can be difficult to maintain a low credit utilization ratio, and that can affect your credit score.

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