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Build credit with a secured credit card

Varo Believe has no minimum security deposit, no annual fees, and no APR.1

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Start where you are

It can be tough qualifying for credit cards or loans with little to no credit history. After all, you need to have credit products to start building credit.

A secured credit card, like the Varo Believe Card, gives you an opportunity to either rebuild credit or start building credit from scratch. It doesn’t matter where your current credit history stands.

How does a traditional secured credit card work?

With a traditional secured credit card, you can access a line of credit by putting down a security deposit. It’s typically much easier to qualify for secured credit programs compared to unsecured credit cards because the deposit acts as collateral. 

The security deposit is usually refundable, and the security deposit amount and credit limit given vary depending on the program. The Varo Believe Program offers one of the best secured credit cards because it has no minimum security deposit, and the money you put toward your deposit goes straight toward paying off the card.

Just like an unsecured credit card, you can use your Varo Believe Card on everyday purchases, and you’ll receive a statement at the end of the month. Paying off your statement on time and in full each month is key to building credit because all your payments will be reported to the three major credit bureaus.

Secured credit cards vs. unsecured credit cards vs. prepaid cards

You can think of secured cards as a hybrid between prepaid cards and unsecured credit cards. Like a prepaid card, secured credit cards require money in the account before you can use the card. Unlike a prepaid card, however, the money isn’t taken out of the account when you make a purchase. Instead, you use your credit line like you would with an unsecured credit card. 

With a secured credit card, you’ll get a statement at the end of the month and your payments will be reported to the credit bureaus. That can help you build, or rebuild, a positive credit history.

Traditional secured credit cards can hold you back

While a traditional secured credit card can be beneficial for credit building, there can be a few drawbacks. 

First off, many secured card issuers perform credit checks to determine whether you qualify for the card. This isn’t helpful when you’re actively trying to rebuild credit, as credit checks can negatively impact your credit score.

On top of that, many secured credit card programs charge high annual fees, maintenance fees, and interest rates. With all these fees, it’s easy to fall into runaway debt instead of building credit.

Build credit the easy way with Varo Believe

Looking for a secured credit card to help build credit? 

Applying for Varo Believe is simple and, more importantly, won’t impact your credit score.

To get on the path to credit building with Varo Believe, you’ll need a Varo Bank Account and a minimum of two direct deposits totaling $1,000 or more in the past 90 days. Additional qualifications apply.

Once you’re approved, you can use your Varo Believe Card anywhere Visa® is accepted.

How it works

1. Add money to set your spending limit
2. Use your Varo Believe Card.
3. Pay your balance on-time and in-full.
4. See your credit score directly in the app.

We’ll report your payments to the three major credit bureaus to help you start building a positive credit history. It’s important to pay on time! Late payments may negatively impact your credit, so on-time payments are critical to building your credit score. 

Best of all, there’s no minimum security deposit, no maintenance fees, no APR, and no annual fee.

Varo Believe Secured Credit CardOther Secured Credit Cards
No minimum security depositYesNo
As much as $500 deposit required2
No annual feesYesNo
Many fees
Up to ~23%3
Can pay card balance with secured depositYesNo
Fully-locked security deposit
Helps you avoid runaway debt**YesNo
No hard credit check to applyYesNo
Credit ReportingYesYes


How much do I have to deposit for a secured credit card?

The deposit for a secured credit card depends on the program. While you need to be prepared to put down up to a $500 deposit for some cards, the Varo Believe Program has no minimum security deposit.

What is the highest limit on a secured credit card?

The limit typically depends on your security deposit amount and varies by program. With Varo Believe, you set your own spending limit. Instead of a minimum security deposit, the money you set aside sets your spending limit and goes straight toward paying off your Varo Believe Card.

How do secured cards help you build credit?

Secured cards help build credit by reporting your payment history to the major credit bureaus. You can build a positive payment history and improve your credit score when you make your monthly payments on time and in full. Keep in mind, late payments are reported and may negatively impact your credit.

Can you get turned down for a secured credit card?

Yes, like all credit products, there’s a possibility you won’t qualify for various reasons. However, because secured credit cards usually require a deposit in exchange for a credit line, it can be easier to qualify for one.

What’s the difference between a secured and unsecured credit card?

A secured credit card requires a deposit, while an unsecured credit card doesn’t. It’s typically easier to qualify for a secured credit card because the issuer can keep the deposit as collateral.