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Like all top secured credit cards, OpenSky Secured Visa is designed for consumers setting out on the long road to building or rebuilding credit. In exchange for loose underwriting standards and regular reports to the 3 major credit reporting bureaus, OpenSky requires an initial security deposit that serves as a hard spending limit. To qualify for a spending limit increase, you’ll need to demonstrate responsible credit use and timely payment patterns.
If you’ve decided that a secured credit card is just what you need to get your credit profile back on track, you’d do well to consider the OpenSky Secured Visa Card. Here’s what you need to know about its requirements, advantages, disadvantages, and overall suitability.
Initial Deposit Requirement and Refund
The OpenSky Secured Visa Card requires a minimum security deposit of $200. The maximum amount you can deposit, if approved, is $3,000. Your deposit amount is always equal to your credit limit, provided Capital Bank deems you creditworthy enough – and blessed with sufficient income – to handle your chosen limit. Your deposit is held in an FDIC-insured deposit account that does not earn interest.
Unlike some secured credit card issuers, Capital Bank does not check applicants’ credit. Provided you’re not in the midst of a bankruptcy that has yet to be discharged, and you can demonstrate that you meet certain other demographic and financial criteria, your application is likely to be approved.
OpenSky Secured Visa does not have a non-secured analogue. You can hold onto this card as long as you want, but you can’t upgrade directly to a non-secured equivalent. To get your security deposit back, you’ll need to pay off any outstanding balance in full and close your account. Capital Bank reserves the right to seize your security deposit to cover delinquent balances as well.
Credit Limits and Limit Increases
If you wish to raise your credit limit, you can formally apply for an increase anytime after your account is open. Your credit limit must always be equal to your security deposit, so you’ll need to make an additional deposit if your application is approved. Your credit limit can’t exceed $3,000 at any time.
Credit Bureau Reporting
Every billing cycle, Capital Bank reports your payment patterns (including nonpayments) to all 3 major credit reporting bureaus: TransUnion, Equifax, and Experian. If you stay well under your credit limit and pay your bills on time each month, your credit score may rise over time.
The purchase and cash advance APR is 19.64% from the day you open your account. Balance transfers aren’t allowed. There’s no penalty APR.
The annual fee is $35. Foreign transactions cost 3%. The cash advance fee is the greater of $6 or 5% of the advanced amount. Late payments cost $25. Returned payments cost $27.
This card is designed for people in the process of building or rebuilding their credit. A bankruptcy that has yet to be discharged could pose problems for your application, but more distant or minor credit history blemishes shouldn’t be an issue. Limited credit history is not disqualifying.
- No Credit Check Required to Apply. Capital Bank doesn’t check applicants’ credit. This is a big advantage over more discerning secured credit cards, which do require applicants to submit to credit checks and freely decline applications from those who don’t meet their underwriting criteria.
- Appropriate for Applicants With Recent Bankruptcies. The OpenSky Secured Visa Card is appropriate for applicants with recently discharged bankruptcies. Again, this is a big leg up over cards that freeze out applicants with bankruptcies discharged more recently than 2 or 3 years hence.
- Low Ongoing APR. For a secured credit card, the OpenSky Secured Visa Card has a pretty low ongoing APR: 19.64% APR for purchases and cash advances. Some competing cards have APRs north of 25%.
- No Penalty APR. The OpenSky Secured Visa Card doesn’t charge penalty interest on past-due balances. If you occasionally miss statement due dates because of cash flow issues or unexpected expenses, this break could save you hundreds of dollars in needless interest charges each year.
- Credit Limit Ranges Up to $3,000. This card’s interest rate ranges as high as $3,000. While that’s not tops in the secured credit card category, it does add flexibility for higher-income borrowers who can afford to put down larger security deposits.
- Has a $35 Annual Fee. The OpenSky Secured Visa Card has a $35 annual fee. While that’s not out of line with other secured cards, it’s a disadvantage relative to the handful of secured options (including the Discover it Secured Credit Card) that don’t charge annual fees, and a problem for cash-strapped cardholders.
- $200 Minimum Initial Deposit Disadvantages Applicants With Limited Resources. This card’s minimum initial deposit is $200. For borrowers who live paycheck to paycheck, that may be problematic. Some competing cards, such as Capital One Secured Mastercard, allow applicants to open accounts with as little as $49 down.
- No Rewards or Bonuses. The OpenSky Secured Visa Card doesn’t have a rewards program. Nor does it have sign-up or spending bonuses. The only reward here – such as it is – is improved credit with responsible use and timely repayment.
- No Non-Secured Option or Upgrade Path. Capital Bank doesn’t offer customers a clear path to non-secured credit card use. If you’d like to upgrade to a non-secured credit card once you’re eligible, you’ll need to lodge a separate application. Most competing cards have non-secured analogues that become available to responsible cardholders after a year (or perhaps more) of responsible credit use.
- Charges a 3% Foreign Transaction Fee. If you routinely travel outside the United States, you’ll want to watch out for this card’s 3% foreign transaction fee. Another popular secured card, the Discover it Secured Credit Card, waives foreign transaction fees.
Secured credit cards like the OpenSky® Secured Visa® Card are tremendous allies in any credit-building or -rebuilding effort, but they’re not the only options for consumers committed to improving their financial hygiene.
Non-secured introductory credit cards, such as the Credit One Bank Unsecured Platinum Visa Card, are better suited to applicants who can’t scrounge up enough cash for an initial security deposit, for instance. Credit counseling often makes more sense for consumers already grappling with elevated debt loads. And self-directed processes like the debt snowball method may help disciplined consumers get out from under mounting high-interest loans. When in doubt, consult with a financial advisor to determine the option that best fits your needs.