How Does LendingTree Get Paid?
LendingTree is compensated by companies on this site and this compensation may impact how and where offers appear on this site (such as the order). LendingTree does not include all lenders, savings products, or loan options available in the marketplace.

How Does LendingTree Get Paid?

LendingTree is compensated by companies on this site and this compensation may impact how and where offers appear on this site (such as the order). LendingTree does not include all lenders, savings products, or loan options available in the marketplace.
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Advertising Disclosure
LendingTree is an advertising-supported comparison service. The site features products from our partners as well as institutions which are not advertising partners. While we make an effort to include the best deals available to the general public, we make no warranty that such information represents all available products. We are compensated by companies on this site and this compensation may impact how and where offers appear on this site (such as the order).

Advertising Disclosure

LendingTree is an advertising-supported comparison service. The site features products from our partners as well as institutions which are not advertising partners. While we make an effort to include the best deals available to the general public, we make no warranty that such information represents all available products. We are compensated by companies on this site and this compensation may impact how and where offers appear on this site (such as the order).
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American Express Disclosure
Terms apply to American Express benefits and offers. Visit americanexpress.com to learn more.

American Express Disclosure

Terms apply to American Express benefits and offers. Visit americanexpress.com to learn more.

Secured Self Visa® Credit Card Review

LendingTree's Review

How LendingTree Rates Credit Cards?

Our experts rate credit cards based on several factors including card benefits, bonus offers and independent research. Credit card issuers do not influence or have a say in our card ratings. Read our credit card methodology here.
2.3
Secured Self Visa<sup>®</sup> Credit Card
Establish credit
No hard credit pull. No credit score required.
Reports to all three credit bureaus
Helps build your credit history with positive use
Control your credit limit
Your savings progress from your Credit Builder Account secures your credit card and sets your limit. Have an active Credit Builder Account in good standing, make at least 3 monthly payments, have $100 or more in savings progress and satisfy income requirements. Then, you’ll be eligible for the Self Visa Credit Card*, without a hard credit check.
Editorial Note: The content of this article is based on the author’s opinions and recommendations alone. It was not reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by the credit card issuer. This site may be compensated through a credit card issuer partnership.

Who is the Secured Self Visa® Credit Card best for?

The Secured Self Visa® Credit Card is best for consumers who need extra guidance while saving money and establishing or building credit with the help of a credit card.

Designed for those with poor credit, this secured card charges a modest annual fee and doesn’t require a hard credit check. However, you must have an open and active Credit Builder Account with Self and meet certain eligibility requirements — like making three monthly payments on time — before you can get the card.

We explain the pros and cons of the Secured Self Visa® Credit Card, and show how it compares to similar secured cards, to help determine if it’s a good fit for you and your financial goals.

Secured Self Visa® Credit Card overview

    • Open a path to a secured credit card
    • No hard credit pull. No credit score required.
    • Start with a Credit Builder Account* that reports to all 3 credit bureaus. Each on-time monthly payment builds credit history and savings.
    • Backed by savings you’ve already built. Your savings progress from your Credit Builder Account secures your credit card and sets your limit. Have an active Credit Builder Account in good standing, make at least 3 monthly payments, have $100 or more in savings progress and satisfy income requirements. Then, you’ll be eligible for the Self Visa Credit Card*, without a hard credit check.
    • Stay on track with credit utilization monitoring, autopay, account reminders, an app, and dedicated customer support
    • No additional money upfront**
    • Micro-pay your way to the deposit***
    • *Credit Builder Account — proceeds are held in a deposit account until maturity.
    • **Your Credit Builder Account savings progress secures your card and sets your limit.
    • ***Credit Builder Accounts & Certificates of Deposit made/held by Lead Bank, Sunrise Banks, N.A., SouthState Bank, N.A., First Century Bank, N.A., each Member FDIC. Subject to credit approval.
    • The secured Self Visa® Credit Card issued by Lead Bank, First Century Bank, N.A., or SouthState Bank, N.A., each Member FDIC. See Self.inc for details.
    • The secured Self Visa® Credit Card requires an active Self Credit Builder Account and qualification based on other eligibility criteria including income & expense requirements. Criteria subject to change.
  • Recommended Credit
    Credit scores ranges may vary. Your individual chance at approval may vary due to factors such as creditors using a particular variation at their discretion
  • 300 600
    Poor
  • Helps build credit through responsible usage
  • Opportunity to increase your credit limit
  • Can be used everywhere Visa is accepted in the U.S.

Intro Purchase APR

N/A

Regular Purchase APR

29.24% Variable.

Intro BT APR

N/A

Regular BT APR

N/A

Annual Fee

$25

Cash Advance Fee

N/A

Foreign Transaction Fee

None

Balance Transfer Fee

N/A

Pros and cons

Pros

  • No hard credit check
  • You control your credit limit
  • Reports to all three credit bureaus

Cons

  • Annual fee
  • Must have a Self Credit Builder Account
  • No rewards program

What we like about the Secured Self Visa® Credit Card

  • No hard credit check required

    Unlike many traditional credit cards and secured cards, the Secured Self Visa® Credit Card does not require a hard credit check to be approved. Instead, you must first open a credit builder loan, and Self will put your payments into a certificate of deposit at a partner bank.

    After you sign up for a Credit Builder Account and meet the following criteria, you’ll be eligible for the Secured Self Visa® Credit Card:

      • Make three monthly payments on time
      • Have $100 or more in savings progress
      • Have your account in good standing

    Note, once you finish paying off your credit builder loan, Self will send you your money back, minus any fees and interest.

  • You control your credit limit

    While there is a $100 minimum, you are in control of how much credit you have available based on the amount of money you move from your Credit Builder Account to your Secured Self Visa® Credit Card. As you make each monthly payment on your credit building account and keep your account in good standing, you may be eligible to increase your credit limit in multiples of $25 at a time — up to the maximum secured amount of $3,000.

  • Reports to the three major credit bureaus

    When using a credit card to help establish or build credit, it’s best to choose one that reports your account and payment activity to the three major credit bureaus (Experian, Equifax and TransUnion), as the Secured Self Visa® Credit Card does.

What to watch out for with the Secured Self Visa® Credit Card

  • Annual fee

    While the $25 annual fee isn’t a deal breaker, know that there may be additional fees associated with the Secured Self Visa® Credit Card, including a late payment fee of up to $15, a returned payment fee of up to $15 and an expedited payment fee of $3.50 each time you use a debit card to pay your bill. To help avoid incurring these additional charges, you may want to set up automatic payments in the Self app.

  • Must have a Self Credit Builder Account

    To get the Secured Self Visa® Credit Card, you’ll need to have a Self credit builder loan. This is a reasonable first step, but it does mean that it could take several months until you’re eligible to have a Secured Self Visa® Credit Card. Plus, this account comes with its own set of fees and interest rates that vary depending on which account type you choose.

  • No rewards program

    The Secured Self Visa® Credit Card doesn’t offer a sign-up bonus or rewards for the purchases you make using the card.

    That said, when trying to build credit, it’s best to focus on paying at least the minimum amount due on time each month, rather than racking up rewards.

Alternate card to the Secured Self Visa® Credit Card

Compare it to the Discover it® Secured Credit Card

| Disclosures
Discover it® Secured Credit Card
Discover it® Secured Credit Card
apply-now-icon Apply Now
on Discover's secure site
Rates & Fees
N/A
28.24% Variable APR
$0
Earn 2% cash back at Gas Stations and Restaurants on up to
  • No credit score required to apply.
  • No Annual Fee, earn cash back, and build your credit history.
  • Your secured credit card requires a refundable security deposit, and your credit line will equal your deposit amount, starting at $200. Bank information must be provided when submitting your deposit.
  • Automatic reviews starting at 7 months to see if we can transition you to an unsecured line of credit and return your deposit.
  • Earn 2% cash back at Gas Stations and Restaurants on up to $1,000 in combined purchases each quarter, automatically. Plus earn unlimited 1% cash back on all other purchases.
  • Discover could help you reduce exposure of your personal information online by helping you remove it from select people-search sites that could sell your data. It’s free, activate with the mobile app.
  • Get an alert if we find your Social Security number on any of thousands of Dark Web sites. Activate for free.
  • Terms and conditions apply.
300 600
Limited/Poor

How Does LendingTree Get Paid?

LendingTree is compensated by companies on this site and this compensation may impact how and where offers appears on this site (such as the order). LendingTree does not include all lenders, savings products, or loan options available in the marketplace.

 

If you want to build credit with the help of a secured card that offers a simpler application process, as well as a rewards program and minimal fees, the Discover it® Secured Credit Card is a good alternative.

Designed for individuals with limited/poor credit, this card requires a refundable security deposit ranging from $200 to $2,500, which will serve as your line of credit. And like the Secured Self Visa® Credit Card, the Discover it® Secured Credit Card reports your credit usage to the three major credit bureaus, so with responsible usage, it can help you establish or rebuild your credit over time. In fact, after seven months of use, Discover conducts monthly reviews on your account to consider upgrading you to an unsecured card and refund your deposit.

Additionally, the Discover it® Secured Credit Card lets cardholders earn 2% cash back at Gas Stations and Restaurants on up to $1,000 in combined purchases each quarter, automatically. Plus earn unlimited 1% cash back on all other purchases. Plus, Discover will match all the cash back you’ve earned at the end of your first year.

But while the Discover it® Secured Credit Card comes with a $0 annual fee, beware that it charges a high 28.24% Variable APR on purchases if you carry a balance on your card from month to month. There is, however, a 10.99% Intro APR for 6 months on balance transfers — which is rare for a secured card. After the intro period ends, a 28.24% Variable APR applies.

Additionally, unlike the Secured Self Visa® Credit Card, the Discover it® Secured Credit Card can be used to make purchases outside of the U.S.

Is the Secured Self Visa® Credit Card right for you?

Due to the nature of the Secured Self Visa® Credit Card being connected to the Self Credit Builder Account, and the financial requirements of the program, this card is best for someone who feels they have little self discipline when it comes to handling money. If you’re someone who has a difficult time saving money on your own, then having outside accountability may help you get on track and develop good financial habits.

But if you’re just looking to build credit with the help of a secured card, you may prefer one with a $0 annual fee and fewer requirements, like the Discover it® Secured Credit Card.

apply-now-icon Apply Now
on Self's secure site
Rates & Fees