THE GOOD

ZERO FRAUD LIABILITY:

Most credit card companies will offer you various benefits regarding your security and privacy. Merrick Bank offers a Zero Fraud Liability policy to protect consumers from identity theft at no extra cost to you. Included in the price of admission is this added layer of security that will help you if you are ever a victim of identity theft.

CREDIT REPORTING:

If you are looking to rebuild your credit history, the Secured Visa® from Merrick Bank could be a good opportunity as they directly report to the three major credit bureaus on a monthly basis. Monthly reporting can positively and dramatically affect your credit, giving you the ability to explore other credit options in the future.

REASONABLE ANNUAL FEE:

At $3 a month, Merrick Bank offers an alternative to simply charging you a one-time fee for membership by allowing you to split the annual fee into monthly payments. Most other debit accounts in comparison will charge more for monthly maintenance fees.

CREDIT LIMIT INCREASES:

With the Secured Visa® from Merrick Bank, it is pretty easy to get your credit limit increased. As we are still recuperating from the effects of the recession, it is increasingly more difficult to be rewarded for your financial responsibility. Merrick Bank recognizes financial responsibility and will increase your spending limit accordingly.

THE BAD

HIGH INTEREST RATES:

One area of concern regarding the Secured Visa® from Merrick Bank is its relatively high interest rates compared to competing cards. For starters, the APR for purchases starts at 17.45% and will vary with the market based on the Prime Rate. APR for cash advances is high as well, sitting at 22.45%. If you plan on carrying a balance, perhaps this card would not be the best option as there are others out there with lower percentage rates.

SUBSTANTIAL PENALTY FEES:

If you are often late on payments and overdraw your account, each transaction will cost you up to $35. This could be tough to cope with for some customers as other cards we reviewed charge lesser fees and some even omit overdrawn fees.

ADDITIONAL CARD FEE:

While most other card providers will allow you to add multiple names to a single card account at no additional cost, you are out of luck with the Secured Visa® from Merrick Bank as they charge $12 per additional card issued per year. Such hidden fees could be a burden to add on to the already steady $36 per year you fork over for the annual fee.

THE DETAILS

Deposit and Limits
Maximum Credit Limit $3,000
Minimum Credit Limit $200
Minimum Security Deposit $200
Rates
Cash Advance Rate (APR) 22.45%* Variable
Grace Period 25 Days
Standard Balance Transfer Rate (APR) N/A
Standard Rate (APR) 17.45%* Variable
Fees
Annual Fee $36
Balance Transfer Fee N/A
Cash Advance Fee $10 or 4% per advance
Foreign Currency Transaction Fee 2% per transaction
Late Payment Fee Up to $38
Minimum Interest Charge $1
Over-Limit Fee Up to $35
Returned Payment Fee Up to $38
Set-up Fee $0

FEATURES

Title
  • Fund Account Online You can fund your account online.

  • Increase Credit Limit with Additional Security Deposit You can increase your credit limit by depositing more money.

  • No Approval Required for Credit Limit Increase You do not need additional approval for credit limit increases.

  • Increase Credit Limit with Good Payment History You can earn credit limit increases based on your credit and payment history.

  • Automatic Credit Reporting The credit card will automatically report your credit standing to the three major credit bureaus.

  • Fraud Liability The credit card offers fraud liability protection.

  • Online Account Access You can access your account 24/7 online.

  • Free Credit Monitoring The credit card offers free credit monitoring services.

  • Grace Period The credit card has a grace period before interest starts to accrue.

  • No Late Payment Fee The credit card does not have a late payment fee.

  • No Minimum Interest Charge The credit card does not have a minimum interest charge.

  • No Over-Limit Fee The credit card does not have an over-credit-limit fee.

  • No Returned Payment Fee The credit card does not have a returned payment fee.

  • Annual Fee Less Than $45 The credit card's annual fee is less than $45.

  • Annual Fee Less Than $55 The credit card's annual fee is less than $55.

  • No Set-up Fee The credit card does not have a set-up fee.

  • Annual Fee Less Than $35 The credit card's annual fee is less than $35.

  • No Annual Fee The credit card does not have an annual fee.

  • No Cash Advance Fee The credit card does not have a cash advance fee.

  • No Foreign Currency Transaction Fee The credit card does not have a foreign currency transaction fee.

  • Deposit Fully Refundable The security deposit is fully refundable.

  • Funds FDIC Insured The security deposit is FDIC-insured.

  • Deposit Earns Interest You can earn interest on your security deposit.

  • No Minimum Deposit The credit card does not require a minimum security deposit.

  • Apply By Phone You can complete the credit card application process over the phone.

  • Apply In Person You can apply for the credit card live in person.

  • Apply Online You can complete the entire credit card application process online.

  • Instant Approval The card offers instant approval for the credit card.

  • No Balance Transfer Fee The credit card does not have a balance transfer fee.

  • Transfer from Credit Cards You can transfer a balance from another credit card.

  • Transfer from Loans You can transfer a balance from a loan to the credit card.

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