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First PREMIER® Bank Secured Credit Card review

Published: November 27, 2018

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Published: November 27, 2018

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Ratings Policy
Credit Building Rating:
1.9 rating
1.9 rating
1.9 / 5
Cost of Membership 1.8
Ease of Building Credit 2.1
APR 4.3
Features 0.0

In a Nutshell:

Though it does not offer any rewards and comes with an annual fee, the First PREMIER Bank Secured credit card is still a decent option for those with lower credit scores looking for a good APR.

Learn more about this card

Average cost of membership per year ($3,600 annual spend)
$50

Security deposit required
$200-$5,000

Initial credit limit
$200

Access to higher credit line?
Account review after 13 months

APR
19.9% (variable)

Annual fee
$50

Other rates and fees

  • Cash advance fee: 5%
  • Foreign transaction fee: 3%
  • Minimum interest charge: $1
  • Late or returned payment: $38
  • Authorized user card fee: $29/year
  • Credit limit increase fee: 25% of increase
  • Wire transfer fee: $5 per transaction

Rewards
None

Features: Optional credit protection for a fee, $0 fraud liability, free FICO® score

The First PREMIER Bank Secured credit card is not the flashiest credit building card and does not offer any sort of rewards. But it does come with a few perks, including an easy application and relatively low APR.

If you have bad to fair credit – or no credit history at all – this card is a fair option for improving your credit score. You’ll have regular opportunities to increase your credit limit and receive a free quarterly FICO score to keep track of your progress.

Easy approval

For applicants who are completely new to credit, the First PREMIER Bank Secured card is a good option, as it does not require a credit history to apply. The application is quick and simple, and you’ll find out if you’ve been approved in less than a minute.

Smaller than average deposit

While most secured cards require a minimum security deposit of around $300, you’ll only need $200 for the First PREMIER Bank Secured card. This comes with a lower initial credit limit, but can be a great option for those who need to start building their credit but don’t have the funds for a large deposit.

Costly annual fee

One drawback to the First PREMIER Bank Secured card is the $50 annual fee, which is on the higher side for a credit building card. Many secured cards, such as the Discover it® Secured and Capital One® Secured Mastercard® don’t charge a fee at all. Because you won’t earn any rewards with this card to offset the cost, you should consider how much you are willing to invest in a card to build your credit.

Access to a higher credit limit

After paying the initial deposit of $200, First PREMIER Bank Secured cardholders have the opportunity to make additional deposits to increase their credit limit up to a maximum of $5,000. If you have the money set aside for a larger deposit, this card allows you to make a marked improvement on your credit score from the start.

Even if you don’t have the money for larger deposits, you will be eligible for an account review for a credit line increase after 13 months. This is not the shortest period you’ll find before eligibility for a credit line increase, but is still a decent offer for cardholders eager to improve their credit score.

There is one big drawback to the review process, however. With the First PREMIER Bank Secured card, you’ll be charged a 25 percent credit limit increase fee on the additional amount. So if you want to increase your credit limit just $100, you’ll owe $25.

Decent APR for a credit building card

By far the biggest benefit to the First PREMIER Bank Secured card is the relatively low APR. Users are charged just 19.9 percent in interest. This is a great deal for a credit building card, which often charge upwards of 20 percent on the low end of their range.

While this is a great APR for this class of card, it is still on the high end overall. You’ll want to avoid carrying a balance whenever possible to avoid accumulating extra charges.

Limited rewards and benefits

The First PREMIER Bank Secured card does not offer any cash back or travel benefits and includes limited other perks. If you are willing to risk a higher APR and initial security deposit in exchange for a rewards program, check out options like the Capital One® QuicksilverOne®.

There are a few benefits for those building their credit, including a quarterly FICO score to keep a close eye on your progress as well as $0 fraud liability.

Why get the First PREMIER Bank Secured Credit Card?

  • You have poor to fair credit or no credit history at all.
  • You have money saved for a larger deposit to increase your credit limit.
  • You plan to carry a balance and need a lower APR.

How to use the First PREMIER Bank Secured Credit Card:

  • Always pay your bill on time to qualify for credit limit increases.
  • Invest in your deposit and credit line increase fee to improve your credit score.
  • Avoid carrying a balance whenever possible to decrease interest charges.
  • Keep an eye on your FICO score to track your credit building process.

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