In a perfect world, you’d pay upfront for every purchase. In our not-so-perfect world, we borrow—especially for larger purchases.

Financial setbacks, however, happen, and they can affect your ability to get credit. Fortunately, certain banks are willing to overlook a poor credit history with “second chance” credit cards.

These second-chance credit cards aren’t a magic bullet, but they can help you rebuild your creditworthiness and give you a better shot at making a major financial purchase down the road.

The downside? You can expect to pay for this privilege.

Before taking out a “second chance” card, carefully consider these 3 things:

  • Pre-approvals: Banks often seek your pre-approval status before formally giving your application the green light. Make sure they are not completing a hard inquiry on your credit. These can add up and further weaken your credit score. Focus instead on those creditors that only perform soft pulls that won’t affect your credit score.
  • Secured vs. Unsecured: Some second chance credit cards are secured and will require that you make a deposit. This is to offset the issuing bank’s risk. Second chance credit cards that are unsecured won’t command a deposit, but they could make up for it with high fees.
  • Interest Rate: Second chance credit cards usually have higher interest rates than more traditional cards. Banks do this because they are taking on customers who might pose a greater risk of default given their past credit history. Comparison shop to find the best rate.
  • Patience: Rebuilding your credit takes time; it won’t happen overnight. Past blemishes will stick around on your credit report for seven years. But as you pay your bills on time, and keep your credit utilization below 30%, you will see improvement in your credit profile.

Which credit cards have no security deposits?

Second-chance credit cards issued by banks such as Capital One, WebBank, Credit One, and Premier Bankcard have zero security deposits.

What credit cards can I use as soon as I am approved?

You might have a difficult time finding a credit card you can use immediately after approval. But when your credit score improves, cards issued by tech giant Apple let you start charging on the Apple Card right away through the mobile app Apple Pay.

What is the easiest unsecured card to get?

Here's al list of second chance credit cards that are totally forgiving when it comes to your credit score and don't even need a deposit.

Capital One QuicksilverOne Cash Rewards Credit Card

Capital One QuicksilverOne Cash Rewards Credit Card

The Capital One QuicksilverOne Cash Rewards is a second chance credit card with no deposit needed. This card is designed for people whose credit score falls into the “fair” range (580-669) and can be used as a tool to rebuild damaged credit.

Even though it’s a credit-building tool, cardholders still enjoy certain benefits such as unlimited 1.5% cash back on every purchase. You can redeem rewards for cash, purchases, or gift cards. Plus cardholders earn 5% back on Capital One Travel purchases, like hotels and rental cars.

But there are a couple of features you should be aware of with this card. It charges a steep variable APR of 30.49% that fluctuates up or down based on the market rate. There is a $39 annual fee, and a late fee of up to $40 if you miss a payment.

Petal 2 Visa Credit Card

Petal 2 Visa Credit Card

Next up is the Petal 2 Visa credit card issued by WebBank, another second chance credit card for bad credit with no deposit required. It helps consumers rebuild their damaged credit and encourages responsible credit use by reporting payment histories to all three credit bureaus. Cardholders may qualify for a credit increase after six months of on-time payments.

Petal 2 is also famous for its zero-fee policy. This means you’ll pay no fees for things like membership, late payments, or returned checks. You will receive 1.5% on everyday purchases. The Petal 2 card has a variable rate of between 17.99% and 31.99% and can offer pre–approval with no credit check required.

Capital One Platinum Credit Card

Capital One Platinum Credit Card

Capital One Platinum is a second chance unsecured[3] credit card. If approved, you’ll gain access to credit with no annual fee. Capital One offers pre-approval with zero risk to your credit score. If your credit score is in the average to fair range, the Capital One Platinum card could be what you’re looking for.

Keep in mind the variable APR on this card is 30.49%, which fluctuates based on the prime rate. Also, there’s no rewards program and late payments will cost you as much as $40. If you make steady payments, you could be rewarded with a credit increase in as quickly as six months.

Credit One Bank Platinum Visa

Credit One Bank Platinum Visa

Credit One Bank will give you a fair shot at rebuilding your credit with its version of a second chance unsecured credit card. This Platinum Visa card is designed for people with average credit. It’s a rewards-based card that lets cardholders earn unlimited 1% back on eligible purchases.

Be prepared to pay a $39 annual fee. Credit One’s variable APR falls below Capital One’s at 28.99%. Still high. Late payments and returned checks will cost you up to $39 each.

Premier Bankcard Mastercard

Premier Bankcard Mastercard

The Premier Bankcard Mastercard specializes in second chances. This card will inundate you with tools, education and support, all designed to help you build your credit.

The Premier card requires that you have a bank account and a credit score of more than 500. You can expect to receive a credit limit in the range of $200-$700, depending on your creditworthiness. With a good payment history, you can qualify for a credit increase in 12 months.

This opportunity will cost you in the way of fees. The Premier Bankcard Mastercard has an APR of 36%. There’s also an annual fee that ranges between $50-$125, again based on your credit profile. In addition, be prepared to pay a monthly fee of up to $10.40, and a program fee of $55-$95 to open your account.

If you’ve run into credit trouble, the sooner you get started rebuilding your credit, the sooner the result of that effort will pay off.