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5 Unsecured Loans for Bad Credit Borrowers (2020)

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Obtaining a loan is a real challenge for the 16% of Americans who have bad credit. If your FICO score is below 580, you understand first-hand what it’s like to deal with bad credit, including the difficulty of acquiring credit cards and loans.

However, good old American competition means providers of unsecured loans for bad credit will always exist — this market is just too big to ignore. To be sure, unsecured loans are more expensive and harder to get than are secured loans.

But it’s hardly unusual for a consumer with bad credit to lack collateral for a secured loan. Therefore, the five unsecured loan networks in this review are critical resources for Americans with poor credit.

Lenders | Approval Tips | FAQs | Methodology

It’s wrong to treat all bad credit borrowers as a monolith. Some require a relatively modest loan on a short-term basis. Others may need longer-term or larger loans. And folks with really bad credit have the highest hurdles to overcome.

That’s why we’ve evaluated the best lending networks for specific needs. We judge all five to be well-established and reputable companies that will go the extra mile to get you the loan you need.

MoneyMutual: Best for Short-Term Loans

MoneyMutual specializes in finding short-term cash advances for bad credit consumers. You can specify a cash advance that you repay all at once on your next payday.

Alternatively, you can request an installment loan that you repay over a period of two or more months. Loan amounts of up to $2,500 are available if you have a steady income of at least $800 a month.

  • Short-term loans up to $2,500
  • Online marketplace of lenders
  • Funds available in as few as 24 hours
  • Simple online form takes less than 5 minutes
  • Trusted by more than 2 million customers
  • Not available in NY or CT

The process is simple and fast – just complete the brief loan request form to be matched to a lender on the MoneyMutual network. After submitting additional information, the lender will set the loan terms for your approval.

Your money will be deposited in your checking account as soon as the next business day. MoneyMutual has helped more than 2 million borrowers since its founding in 2010.

CashUSA.com: Best for Long-Term Loans

CashUSA.com can help you find a loan with up to 72 months to repay. You can qualify for a loan from $500 to $10,000 if you receive an after-tax monthly income of at least $1,000. You must also be a U.S. citizen or permanent resident, 18+ years old, with a checking account, home/work phone numbers, and a valid email address.

  • Loans from $500 to $10,000
  • All credit types accepted
  • Receive a loan decision in minutes
  • Get funds directly to your bank account
  • Use the loan for any purpose

It takes just a few minutes to fill out the short loan request form. If you qualify, CashUSA.com will forward you to a direct lender on its network.

You then complete the application process and receive a quick decision. If approved, you can expect your loan proceeds as soon as the next business day.

BadCreditLoans.com: Best for Really Bad Credit

Bad Credit Loans has been arranging loans since 1998 for consumers with really bad credit. It can match you to a lender on its network that offers loans with repayment periods of three to 36 months.

The recommended lender will have you supplement your Bad Credit Loans’ request and immediately evaluate your application. Upon approval, you’ll have your money as soon as the next business day.

  • Loan amounts range from $500 to $5,000
  • Experienced provider established in 1998
  • Compare quotes from a network of lenders
  • Flexible credit requirements
  • Easy online application & 5-minute approval
  • Funding in as few as 24 hours

To qualify, you must be a U.S. citizen, age 18+, with regular income, a checking account, and a valid email address. The lender sets the loan’s actual APR and term.

Even though you have really bad credit, this lending service will look beyond your credit score to qualify you for a loan of up to $5,000, although its lenders do not usually offer loans of more than $1,000 to borrowers with really bad credit.

PersonalLoans.com: Best for Large Loans

PersonalLoans.com is your best bet for a large bad credit loan of up to $35,000. To qualify, you must be a U.S citizen or resident, at least 18 years old, and have a steady monthly income, a Social Security number, and a bank account. This lending service operates in all 50 states.

  • Loan amounts range from $500 to $35,000
  • All credit types welcome to apply
  • Lending partners in all 50 states
  • Loans can be used for anything
  • Fast online approval
  • Funding in as few as 24 hours

PersonalLoans.com operates with a large network of direct lenders, including many that specialize in bad credit loans. The network welcomes cosigners who can help you receive loan approval and reduce your interest costs.

Lenders offer repayment periods of up to 72 months. Typically, your loan proceeds will be deposited into your checking account as soon as the next business day.

CashAdvance®.com: Best for Emergency Loans

CashAdvance.com is optimized to quickly get you a small, short-term loan of between $100 and $999 that you repay on your next payday. To qualify, you must have a monthly income of at least $1,000 after taxes.

You can apply if you are a U.S. citizen, have reached age 18, and can supply an email address and checking account number.

  • Loan amounts range from $100 to $1,000
  • Short-term loans with flexible credit requirements
  • Compare quotes from a network of lenders
  • 5-minute approvals and 24-hour funding
  • Minimum monthly income of $1,000 required
  • Current employment with 90 days on the job required

The direct lenders on the CashAdvance.com network set the loan APR and other terms. Conveniently, you can apply for an installment loan if you need a longer repayment period.

If your loan is approved, the loan proceeds can be deposited in your checking account as soon as the next business day. This lending service is not available in all states.

While the difficulties in getting an unsecured bad credit loan are significant, they are not insurmountable. You can improve the odds by adopting a long-term strategy to increase your credit score by paying your bills on time, reducing your credit utilization ratio, and refraining from applying for new credit.

However, substantially raising your credit score can take several months, even years. What do you do if you need a loan now?

The five loan networks in this review are an excellent place to start. If you want to explore other alternatives, here are some tips you’ll find useful:

  • Fix errors on your credit reports: You can instantly improve your credit score by disputing errors on your credit reports at the three major credit bureaus — Experian, TransUnion, and Equifax. You can get free copies of your credit reports at AnnualCreditReport.com.
  • Recruit a cosigner: Cosigners with good credit can make all the difference. A cosigner isn’t expected to help with repayments or to receive any loan proceeds but is on the hook if you default on your loan. Lenders are much more likely to approve an unsecured loan if you can provide a creditworthy cosigner.
  • Borrow from family or friends: This option depends on your personal relationships with individuals in a position to lend you money. On the positive side, you often can get a low- or no-interest loan with flexible payback terms. But the downside is significant: You can damage your relationships by failing to repay.
  • Get a credit card cash advance: If you have bad credit, you may not have any credit cards. Even if you do, the cards may have very tight cash advance limits. This alternative is best for small or emergency loans you can repay quickly. The APRs on cash advances from bad-credit credit cards are typically in the 20% to 30% range, but higher rates are possible.
  • Apply to a credit union: Credit unions are good options because they try hard to accommodate the needs of their members. The maximum APR on credit union unsecured loans is 18%. Most credit unions have specific criteria to join, but many have easy-to-achieve enrollment requirements.
  • Apply for a person to person (P2P) marketplace loan: P2P marketplaces provide an opportunity for borrowers and lenders to find each other. Many P2P lenders are willing to offer bad credit loans on negotiated terms.

Our list does not include home equity loans and cash-out auto loans, because they are secured by your home or car. However, if you have equity in your home or car, you may want to consider these alternatives.

Our five recommended lending networks offer unsecured loans to folks with bad or no credit. They have many things in common:

  • All are loan matching services that facilitate direct loans from the lenders on their networks.
  • Their services are free — they make their money by collecting fees from the lenders on their networks.
  • All have similar prequalification criteria, including U.S. citizenship or residency, a minimum age of 18, a reliable source of income, and a checking account, email address, and work/home phone numbers.
  • They are all designed to work fast. If you are approved, you can often receive your loan proceeds as soon as the next business day.

That’s not to say they are all equally suited for every type of unsecured loan. If you need a short-term emergency loan, you may want to start with MoneyMutual or CashAdvance.com. They each offer loans with short repayment periods, some as soon as your next paycheck.

Conversely, if you want a larger, long-term loan, consider PersonalLoans.com or CashUSA.com. Both offer loan terms as long as 72 months and loan amounts up to $35,000 and $10,000, respectively. And if your credit is really bad, try Bad Credit Loans, which has extensive experience with lenders who are willing to accommodate borrowers with bad credit.

To recap, we’ve rated the following loan companies as being the best for bad credit borrowers:

  • MoneyMutual: Best for Short-Term Loans
  • CashUSA.com: Best for Long-Term Loans
  • BadCreditLoans.com: Best for Really Bad Credit
  • PersonalLoans.com: Best for Large Loans
  • CashAdvance.com: Best for Emergency Loans

Our favorite short-term loan company for bad credit is MoneyMutual. Since 2010, it’s been matching bad credit borrowers to a network of direct lenders.

MoneyMutual offers a versatile menu of loans. You can get a short-term cash advance that you repay when you receive your next paycheck or an installment loan you can repay over a period of three to 72 months.

CashUSA.com is our top pick for long-term loans. It allows you to space out repayments over periods up to 72 months in length.

Loan amounts range from $500 to $10,000 for applicants with a monthly income of at least $1,000 after taxes. This loan matching service promises quick processing and you can receive your loan proceeds as quickly as one business day.

If your credit is truly in the tank, we suggest you consider Bad Credit Loans, our top choice for really bad credit. In business since 1998, it can arrange loans that give you from three to 36 months to repay. Although it offers loans of up to $5,000, it caps loan amounts at $1,000 for consumers with very bad credit.

Perhaps you’d prefer to get a loan from a peer-to-peer (P2P) lending network. PersonalLoans.com, our top-rated company for large loans, partners with several lenders who offer P2P loans in addition to unsecured bad credit loans via its online lending network. These lenders generally prefer borrowers with a minimum FICO score of 600, but there are always exceptions.

We judge CashAdvance.com as the best choice for emergency loans ranging from $100 to $999. These are short-term loans that you fully repay on your next payday.

However, you can also arrange longer-term installment loans if that better suits your needs. Loan decisions and funding are fast, with your money deposited to your checking account as soon as one business day.

Typically, lenders check your credit score and credit history when evaluating your loan application. But a credit check is problematic if you have bad credit or no credit history. The answer may be to apply to a lender that doesn’t do a credit check.

The five loan services reviewed here all arrange no-credit-check loans, but keep in mind that this type of loan typically results in reduced loan amounts with higher interest rates. You can improve your chances of approval by borrowing only the money you need and demonstrating your capacity to repay.

No Credit Check Loans

When lenders evaluate a no-credit-check loan, they will want to know about your income, expenses, and debts. Income should be reliable, stemming from employment, Social Security, a pension, etc. Your expenses, including rent/mortgage and debt payments, must leave enough money from your monthly income to repay a new loan.

Certain types of loans are more attainable despite the lack of a credit check. You increase your chances of approval by recruiting a cosigner with good credit, especially when your cosigner approves his or her own credit check.

Another alternative is a secured loan, such as a cash-out refinance loan. With a secured loan, lenders are less concerned about your credit. Instead, they require that the value of the loan collateral exceed (usually by 10% to 20% or more) the loan amount.

If you have equity in an asset and use it as collateral, remember that the lender will seize the asset if you default on the loan. That means your house can be foreclosed, and your car can be repossessed.

Guarantees are available in the world of finance, but they do not extend to the ability to obtain a loan when you have bad credit and a problematic credit history.

Instead of thinking in terms of loan guarantees, it’s more realistic to consider lenders that maintain flexible requirements. In this sense, the five lending networks in this review guarantee making every effort to approve your loan.

To protect themselves, lenders use several strategies to guarantee a loan. These include limiting the loan amounts, charging higher APRs, requesting cosigners, tacking on additional fees, and accepting collateral. If the purpose of the loan is to purchase a home or vehicle, the lender will require a down payment, which ensures you are suitably motivated to repay.

The one place where loans are truly guaranteed is in the mortgage market. The Federal Housing Administration and other government agencies offer mortgage guarantees that protect lenders from default risk. Typically, you will need to purchase mortgage insurance to help protect the guaranteeing agency.

You will have less need for a “guaranteed” loan if you can improve your credit score. A higher score gives you more borrowing options. You can work toward a higher score by:

  • Paying your bills on time.
  • When repaying credit cards, pay more than the minimum amount due.
  • Reducing your credit utilization ratio, which is the amount of credit you are using divided by the amount available to you.
  • Fixing errors on your credit reports.

You can also improve your approval chances by increasing your income and/or reducing your monthly expenses. Lenders look at your debt-to-income ratio (i.e., your monthly debt payments divided by your monthly gross income) when assessing your creditworthiness. For example, many mortgage lenders require a DTI ratio no greater than 43%.

When it comes to personal loan providers, competition is the name of the game. Among other things, this means that there is no universal minimum for the credit score you’ll need to obtain a personal loan.

FICO scores range from 300 (worst) to 850 (best). The average FICO score for American consumers is 704.

If your FICO score is very poor (below 580), you’ll be best served by lenders who work with low or no minimum credit scores. You can start with the five loan networks in this review. They all arrange loans for bad credit consumers as well as no-credit-check loans.

Avg Loan APRs

In addition, some online lenders use metrics other than credit scores when underwriting loans. For example, Upstart considers factors such as your experience and education when evaluating a loan application. These factors include your years of credit, area of study, and job history.

Peer-to-peer lending marketplaces, such as Lending Club, require a minimum credit score of 600. If you qualify, your loan request is posted in the marketplace, allowing individual investors to offer you a loan.

You can remove credit score considerations by getting a secured personal loan. With this kind of loan, you put up one or more collateral items to guarantee a personal loan. Collateral can include cash, securities, or property.

If you are able to obtain a loan despite having bad credit, consider it an opportunity to improve your score. You can do this if the lender reports your payments to one or more of the credit bureaus. To improve your score over time, pay on time, never miss a payment, and reduce your overall debt.

This list of the best unsecured loans for bad credit evaluates lending networks consisting of partner lenders that approve applicants with low credit scores. We assessed the ease of approval, time of funding, reporting to the credit bureaus to help build credit, rates and terms offered, fees charged, and Better Business Bureau grades, among other criteria relevant to this article to determine the rankings.

CardRates’ reviews undergo a thorough editorial integrity process to ensure that content is not compromised by advertiser influence.



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Bad Credit

Can I be denied a job due to bad credit?

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Can I be denied a job due to bad credit?
Image source: Getty Images


People often worry about their credit history when it comes to applying for a new credit card, a mortgage or a car loan. If you have poor credit, should you also be concerned about finding work? Can you be denied a job due to bad credit?

Let’s examine the facts.

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What is bad credit anyway?

Bad credit is basically a negative assessment of your finances based on your history of borrowing. Bad credit implies that you have a bad track record with lenders. This is most likely because you have a pattern of not paying your bills on time or defaulting on your loans.

Is it legal for employers to check my credit report?

Law and finance firms are legally required to perform credit checks on potential employees. However, other kinds of employers can also conduct credit checks on you before they hire you. But they must ask for your permission before they do so.

In many cases, a credit check will be performed by a company if the role you are applying for involves dealing with large amounts of cash.

Why might employers want to check my report?

There are many reasons an employer might want to check your report. For example, they might want to ensure that:

  • You are who you say you are.
  • You have a good track record of managing money.
  • It’s not too much of a risk to let your manage money.
  • Your financial behaviour will not affect your work performance.

Could you be rewarded for your everyday spending?

Rewards credit cards include schemes that reward you simply for using your credit card. When you spend money on a rewards card you could earn loyalty points, in-store vouchers airmiles, and more. MyWalletHero makes it easy for you to find a card that matches your spending habits so you can get the most value from your rewards.

Can an employer deny me a job due to bad credit?

Yes. According to credit reference agency Experian, if your prospective employer feels that your current financial situation could impact your ability to perform well in the role, or if your credit history shows poor financial planning, they may decide not to hire you.

Generally speaking, however, employers are more likely to be concerned about serious ‘red flags’ in your credit history, like bankruptcy rather than the odd missed payment.

In any case, employers only get access to your ‘public’ credit report. This contains your electoral roll information and any major red flags such as bankruptcies, individual voluntary arrangements and county court judgments.

They will not have access to your detailed credit repayments or your credit score.

How can I keep my credit history from affecting my ability to get a job?

If a prospective employer runs a credit check on you, ultimately you have no control over what they do with the information, including denying you a job due to bad credit.

The best thing you can do to minimise the impact of your credit on your chances of getting a job is to review your credit report beforehand.

You have the right to one free credit report per year from each of the three credit agencies (Experian, TransUnion and Equifax). Before you apply for a job or attend an interview, request your report and review it for any errors so that you can have them corrected ahead of time.

Even if there are no errors, knowing what is on your credit report puts you in a good position to answer any questions that may arise during the hiring process.

Indeed, if there’s something in your report that employers might consider a ‘red flag’, don’t panic. Instead, begin preparing an explanation to give to them. If it was, for example, caused by financial hardship beyond your control, the employer may take this into account.

Alternatively, you can contact a credit reference agency and request that a notice of correction be added to your report. This is a brief note of up to 200 words in length that explains circumstances that a lender might otherwise question.

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Some offers on MyWalletHero are from our partners — it’s how we make money and keep this site going. But does that impact our ratings? Nope. Our commitment is to you. If a product isn’t any good, our rating will reflect that, or we won’t list it at all. Also, while we aim to feature the best products available, we do not review every product on the market. Learn more here. The statements above are The Motley Fool’s alone and have not been provided or endorsed by bank advertisers. John Mackey, CEO of Whole Foods Market, an Amazon subsidiary, is a member of The Motley Fool’s board of directors. The Motley Fool UK has recommended Barclays, Hargreaves Lansdown, HSBC Holdings, Lloyds Banking Group, Mastercard, and Tesco.




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Refinancing Your Subprime Auto Loan

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Refinancing is a wonderful way to save money on your monthly car loan payment – but it can cost you more in the long run if you’re not careful. Refinancing when you have a subprime auto loan isn’t always as easy as refinancing a vehicle when you have good credit. Working with the right lender can help, though.

What Is Refinancing?

Refinancing is when you replace your existing car loan with a different one for the same vehicle, which may have either a lower interest rate, a longer loan term, or both.

Qualifying for a lower interest rate is optimal for getting a lower monthly payment and saving money overall. If you only extend your loan term without getting a lower rate, you actually end up paying more in interest charges over the term of your loan.

Auto loans typically use a simple interest formula, meaning your interest charges add up daily. The longer your loan term, the more you pay the lender – it’s wise to choose the shortest loan term you can afford. If you only extend your loan term you may end up paying more than the vehicle’s value!

Refinancing can typically be done with your current lender or with another one. It’s a good idea to shop around for the best possible rate before going with the first offer you receive. When you shop for the same type of financing with multiple lenders in a two-week timeframe, it’s called rate shopping. When you do this only one credit inquiry impacts your credit score instead of multiple, minimizing the negative impact that hard pulls can have on your credit score.

Options for Bad Credit Borrowers

Taking out a subprime auto loan is a great way to improve your credit, so, if you’ve kept up with your loan to this point and just need a little wiggle room in your budget, refinancing could be for you. Your credit is an important factor in refinancing your auto loan because refinancing is typically reserved for people with good credit.

However, when a borrower already took out a subprime car loan, many refinancing lenders are willing to work with them as long as they’ve made improvements to their credit over the course of the loan. Better credit alone doesn’t qualify you for refinancing, though.

In order to qualify for refinancing, you, your vehicle, and your loan all need to meet the requirements of a lender. These vary, but in order to refinance your car you typically need to meet these qualifications:Refinancing Your Subprime Auto Loan

  • Have a better credit score than when you began the loan
  • Have had your auto loan for at least one year
  • Have an acceptable loan amount
  • Have no more than 100,000 miles on your vehicle
  • Car can’t be more than 10 years old
  • You must be current on your payments
  • There can’t be negative equity in the vehicle

Lenders that refinance typically prefer cars that are in good condition, that aren’t too old, and have lower mileage. Some lenders may not want to refinance a vehicle that’s at risk for breaking down or is depreciating quickly.

They’re generally looking for a loan that isn’t too new, or too close to being paid off as well. And, refinancers may also require that you haven’t missed a payment on your original car loan. A borrower whose current on their loan gives a lender confidence you’ll manage the new loan well.

Alternatives to Refinancing Your Subprime Auto Loan

If you’re not able to refinance your vehicle, you typically still have the option to trade it in for something more affordable. Even if you’re still paying on a loan, all you have to do is pay off the loan to release the lien on the car.

Even if it’s years from the end of your loan term, you may have a good chance at trading in your vehicle, especially now. Due to fluctuations in the auto market, used cars are in high demand currently, which means that dealerships may be willing to pay a higher price to get your used vehicle on their lot – even if you’re a bad credit borrower looking to trade-in.

If you still owe on an auto loan this gives you a better chance at selling your car for the amount you owe to the lender. It may even give you enough cash left over to put toward your next, more affordable vehicle!

Ready to Get Started?

If you think refinancing your subprime auto loan is the way to go, you can check out our resources, here. But, if you think that finding an affordable, used car with a lower monthly payment is the right choice for you, we want to get you started toward your goal today!

At Auto Credit Express, we’ve got a coast-to-coast network of special finance dealerships ready to work with borrowers who are struggling with credit challenges. To get connected to a dealer in your local area that’s signed up with subprime lenders, simply fill out our auto loan request form. It’s fast, free, and never carries any obligation.

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It’s Time to Break Up With Your First Credit Card

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©Shutterstock.com / Shutterstock.com

Many of us got our first credit cards when we were either in college or in our early 20s. We likely did not have a full-time job with a steady salary, and if we did, it’s also likely we weren’t rolling in dough.

See: 13 Credit Cards That Every 30-Something Should Consider
Find: Surprising Uses for Your Credit Card Rewards

Given these circumstances, the first credit cards offered to us were probably of a particular kind: low credit limits, no prior credit history required, high annual percentage rate and overall easy to get. While these cards served us well as a way to build up our credit — and probably learn some lessons about money the hard way — it’s time to let go for a couple of reasons.

The Benefits of Upgrading Your Card

When you upgrade your card, it’s likely you will also upgrade the benefits. Some companies, like Discover, Credit One and Capital One, are popular choices as a first credit card. However, these companies have better options as you, and your finances, mature.

The Wall Street Journal suggests asking for an upgrade. “Customers need to phrase it as a ‘product change’ when they call the card company. A product change involves getting a new card with the same card provider and it typically allows a cardholder to keep everything else the same, including the account number and available credit.”

See: 10 Credit Cards That Have Gotten Better During the Pandemic
Find: Old-School Money Advice You Shouldn’t Follow Anymore

This could be a good idea for those who are not ready to jump ship from their first credit company just yet. It also removes the hassle of having to find a different provider, and probably the largest benefit of all — no hard credit check needed.

A “hard” credit check is when your credit is thoroughly examined, and it results in an inquiry showing up on your credit report. These are always necessary for opening a new line of credit, like a credit card or a mortgage, but too many inquiries can count against you and negatively affect your credit. A “soft” credit check, on the other hand, will not affect your credit score and is usually done for verification purposes, such as when you apply for new employment. Soft checks also happen with preapprovals.

See: Soft vs. Hard Credit Check — What’s the Difference?
Find: 30 Things You Do That Can Mess Up Your Credit Score

If you ask for a product change on a credit card, you won’t need to have that hard inquiry because the company already has a solid picture of your credit and has done an inquiry before. But it’s important to confirm that your credit history will be rolled over to the new card.

Switching credit institutions all together can be beneficial, depending on what you’re trying to achieve. While the rules of credit apply whether you have, for example, a Credit One or Chase credit card, it’s not a secret that certain credit cards have certain reputations — or that credit bureaus take notice.

For example, the Credit One Bank Visa card is “one of the most popular credit cards for people with bad credit, largely because it’s one of the few unsecured cards that applicants with poor credit scores can get approved for,” according to WalletHub.

See: Biden Wants to Shut Down Credit Bureaus – What Would That Mean for You?
Find: 10 Credit Score Myths You Need to Stop Believing

In contrast, American Express credit cards are best for people with credit scores over 700 and require at least “good” credit for approval, WalletHub adds. A good credit score is one that’s between 670 and 739, according to Fair Isaac.

So while both cards function the same way, the profile of those who own these cards might be different — or at least be perceived as such.

Theoretically, the same person could own both cards, but your money works for you more with an American Express vs. a Credit One. If you have a Credit One card but qualify for American Express, it might make sense to leave your old credit card behind. In addition to the immediate financial benefits, upgrading for a credit card company that has a reputation for being exclusive to those with good credit could help when you apply for a mortgage or apply for credit cards at specific stores.

See: This Is How Many Credit Cards You Should Have
Find: Credit Cards With the Best Incentives to Open in 2021

The first question you should ask yourself is, “What is my card doing best for me?” If the answer is helping you build your credit, getting you out of bad credit or allowing you to have credit when you otherwise would not be able to, then sticking with the same card, or at least the same credit card company, makes sense.

This allows you avoid a new credit inquiry on your credit report while still building and increasing your credit. Asking for a credit limit increase on your credit card if you’ve been with the same company for a while, you’ve been routinely paying off your card and you’re in good standing, is a good idea.

See: Expert Tips to Fix Your Credit on a Limited Income
Find: What Is a Credit Limit?

If you are shopping around for a new card that gives you rewards or benefits based on your purchases, starting small is paramount. It wouldn’t be prudent to go straight for a card that has a yearly fee, for example.

Start small, and start smart with credit limits, too. Going from a limit of $2,000 straight to a limit of $15,000 while your salary remains relatively unchanged is not always a good thing. Having a higher credit limit doesn’t necessarily mean that you are now richer or more responsible — it only means that you now have a greater risk of putting yourself into serious debt. Slowly increasing your credit limit makes your debt more manageable — and makes you look more responsible to credit bureaus.

Breaking up is hard to do, but if your finances have matured, it might be time to get a card that helps you reach your goals with cash-back rewards and points you can use for travel, groceries and other other items. Shopping around for a lower interest rate and a slightly increased credit limit can also help you move forward.

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This article originally appeared on GOBankingRates.com: It’s Time to Break Up With Your First Credit Card

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