The First PREMIER® Bank Secured credit card is designed for people who have no credit or severely damaged credit. There’s no credit check, so almost anyone can qualify. There is an annual fee, as with most secured cards that don’t check credit.
This card offers easy qualification and a relatively low APR, along with benefits like free FICO score access. You still have to pay an annual fee and a security deposit.
Let’s take a closer look at the card, its benefits, and its shortcomings.
First PREMIER® Bank Secured Credit Card
The First PREMIER® Bank Secured Credit Card offers easy qualification and a moderate APR. There are also significant fees.
This is a bare-bones card that is designed for people who can’t qualify for any other card. There are no rewards and the fees are substantial. If you can qualify for a no-fee card, that will be a better option.
Easy to qualify
Credit building tool
Reports to all 3 major credit bureaus
Automatic Limit Increases
Free Access To FICO Score
$50.00 annual fee
Requires a deposit
Limit Increase fee
No option to upgrade to an unsecured card
What’s The First Premier® Bank Secured Card?
The First Premier Bank secured credit card was created for people who have no credit or bad credit. There’s no credit check, so almost anyone can be approved.
Like most secured cards it will report to all 3 credit reporting agencies. That can help you establish a good payment history if you use the card wisely.
Who Is First Premier Bank?
First PREMIER Bank was established in 1929 and is headquartered in South Dakota. It is one of the top 20 issuers of MasterCard® credit cards in the United States.
They are also a four-time recipient of Mastercard’s Performance Excellence Award.
First Premier Bank Secured Credit Card Rates & Fees
Below are some of the basic features of the First Premier® Bank Secured Credit Card:
- Interest rate: 19.9% APR
- Annual fee: $50
- Rewards: None
- *Security deposit: $200 minimum, $5,000 maximum
- Foreign transaction fee: 3% of each transaction amount in U.S. dollars.
- Credit reporting: Reports payment information to all three credit bureaus.
- Late payment fee: Up to $39.00
- Credit limit increase fee: 25% of the amount of the credit limit increase
- Return Item fee: Up to $39.00
- Balance Transfer fee: N/A
- Cash advance fee: Either $8 or 5% of the amount of each cash advance, whichever is greater.
*With secured cards, you will need to provide a refundable security deposit, which determines what your initial credit limit will be. The credit card company holds that deposit in case you don’t pay your bill.
First PREMIER® Secured Credit Card Features
- Easy Online Application Process
- Monthly Access To Your FICO score
- Reports to all three major credit bureaus
- Manage your account 24/7 with online or telephone access
- Automatic Credit Limit Increase (if you qualify)
Monthly FICO Score
Each monthly statement for your First Premier® Bank Secured Credit Card will contain your FICO score. This allows you to track your credit-building progress using the same score that most lenders use.
First Premier does not state which FICO scoring model you get or which credit bureau provides it. Your credit scores may vary with different scoring models and credit bureaus.
You can view your FICO score by logging into your online account and looking at your statement.
First PREMIER® Credit Limit Increase
While you can always add additional funds to your deposit to increase the credit limit (up to $5,000), after 13 months you will be considered for an unsecured credit limit increase.
The decision on if you will get an increase is based on how you use the account during the first 12 months. This means it is possible to get an increase without depositing more money after the first year.
However, remember that you will pay a fee of 25% of the amount of the increase you receive.
For Example: If you get approved for a $250 credit limit increase, a charge of $62.50 will deduct from your available balance.
A credit limit increase can help you build credit by keeping your credit utilization down, but this is a steep price to pay for a higher credit limit.
First Premier does not offer the option to upgrade to an unsecured card. Once your credit improves you will probably want to close the account and apply for a credit card with better features and lower fees.
Understanding Your Security Deposit
Your initial security deposit will determine your credit limit and affect your credit profile. With First Premier® your initial deposit can be as low as $200.00, but you can deposit up to $5,000 to increase your credit limit.
The amount you deposit will become your credit limit.
A small deposit is easy to manage, but you will have to use your card very carefully to avoid running a high credit utilization rate, which can damage your credit.
Adding to your deposit and raising your limit will tie up some cash, but it will make it easier to build credit. Your deposit is refundable.
First Premier® Bank Secured Card Pros & Cons
- Low APR
- Free access to FICO score
- Automatic limit increase
- Reports to all 3 bureaus
- $50 annual fee
- Credit limit increase fee
- No option to upgrade to an unsecured card.
Alternatives To The First Premier® Card
A secured credit card through First Premier® is a viable option if you have no credit or bad credit and you need a credit card. If you can qualify for a no-fee secured card, that would be a better option.
Many no-fee secured cards allow prequalification without a hard inquiry on your credit, so have nothing to lose by seeing if you’ll qualify. It’s always worth looking at several secured cards to be sure you’re getting the best deal.
No matter if you are looking to start building your credit or need to rebuild your credit, a secured credit card is one of the best tools to use on your journey.
There are other ways to build credit, and several of them can be used alongside a secured card.
Experian Boost can help you build your credit record with phone and utility payments… and it’s absolutely free!.
Self online credit builder loans are straightforward to apply for and the application process is easy.
Steps To Take After You’re Approved
The real work starts once you have been approved for your First Premier® Secured Mastercard® Credit Card.
1. Monitor Your Credit
Monitoring your credit is a key part of trying to build or rebuild your credit. Keeping an eye on your credit reports will help you understand your credit and your finances and will give you an early warning of identity theft.
You should try to find a free service that allows you to monitor all 3 of your credit reports.
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2. Pay In Full and On Time
Making on-time payments sounds simple, but sometimes it isn’t. We all live in the real world where things almost never go as planned.
It’s not always easy, but it’s important to make all payments on time. Late payments will trigger costly late fees and do serious damage to your credit. If you’re not sure if you’ll be able to make payments, minimize spending on your card.
It’s also important to pay your balance in full. The First PREMIER® Bank Secured Credit Card has a reasonable interest rate, but you don’t want to pay interest at all.
If you pay your balance in full for each statement period, you will not pay interest.
3. Keep Credit Utilization Low
Another factor to consider is credit utilization. This is the percentage of your credit limit that you actually use. Secured cards typically have low limits, so you’ll have to watch your balance carefully to keep credit utilization down.
Credit utilization is an important component of your credit score. Try to keep your balance below 30% of your limit. Under 10% is even better!
👉 For example: If your First PREMIER® Bank Secured Credit Card has a $400 credit limit and your balance is $100, your credit utilization is 25%. That’s not bad, but it could be better.
Here’s a proven way to use a credit card to build credit.
Place a single small recurring expense, like a Netflix account or your Internet bill, on your card. Set up a pull from your checking account to cover the bill and be sure the balance stays high enough to make the payment.
Put the card away and forget about it. Your card will be active, payments will be made on time, you won’t pay interest, and your credit utilization will stay low.
4. Don’t Make Minimum Payments
The minimum payment seems like an easy way to keep your card in good standing. It can be tempting to just make that minimum payment, especially if you’re pressed for cash.
Don’t do it. Making only the minimum payment is a sure way to push your balance up, bloat your credit utilization, and raise your interest costs. It’s not good for your credit or your finances.
How To Cancel Your First Premier® Credit Card?
First Premier Bank lets you cancel your credit card at any time by calling its customer service line.
Cancel By Phone: Call First Premier One®at 1-800-987-5521 to speak to a rep and tell them you want to cancel your First Premier® secured credit card.
Is There A Fee For Closing My Account?
Outside of the fees associated with your remaining balance, there is no fee for closing your account.
Your security deposit will be refunded, minus any balance.
The card has an annual fee, so if you’re no longer using it it’s a good idea to close the account. You may reduce the length of your credit history and that could cause a small temporary drop in your credit score, but it’s not worth it to keep paying that fee for a card you aren’t using.
Should You Get This Card?
The First Premier® Bank Secureold Preferred® Credit Card is designed for people who need a credit card and want to start building a credit record. It requires no credit check and is available to almost anyone.
If you qualify for a no-fee secured card, that will be a better option. It’s worth going through a pre-qualification process for a no-fee card to find out.
Before you get this card, we suggest comparing it with other secured cards that don’t require a credit check, like the OpenSky® Secured Visa® Credit Card or the Applied Bank® Secured Visa® Gold Preferred® Credit Card. Comparing these cards will give you confidence that you’ve selected the best option for your situation.
Always shop around before selecting any financial product!
Editorial Note: The editorial content on this page is not provided or commissioned by any financial institution. Any opinions, analyses, reviews, statements, or recommendations expressed in this article are those of the author alone, and may not have been reviewed, approved, or otherwise endorsed by any of these entities prior to publication.