We're planning on buying a home sometime in the next couple of years (I wish sooner...but you know!) and I think we should start working on our credit. We couldn't even get a loan for a car (only $5k) without a co-signer...sooooo...yeah.
We're doing the Dave Ramsey plan, although, obviously, not perfectly. I really don't want to have to worry about finding a special bank with someone who can underwrite a loan and yaddi yah, once we have the funds to buy a house. I'd rather just do it the easy, lazy way ;)
Anyway, we have no debt, which is apparently our problem. No car loans, student loans - credit cards. Just $5k in the savings and our normal bills (electric, internet, netflix). Dh has a couple minor neg. marks on his credit - a non-paid medical bill under $50 from *years* ago, and a late payment. Everything else is good - everything paid off in a timely manor, no late payments, closed in good standing - but they are *closed*...which is the point!
Okay. Sorry, I'm rambling!
I want to get a credit card to use once or twice a month, paying it off immediately (I'm thinking it would be used for one thing, and one thing only - like gas for our car).
Thing is, I've had credit cards in the past. I currently have a $165 "line of credit" on my ING checking account and guess what? I ALWAYS owe them money. Not that big of a deal, since there is (basically) no interest, but STILL! I'm not very good with temptation..and I feel like me and a credit card would probably be a bad mix. My good intentions to use it for gas would soon turn into junk food and shoes...or something.
So I'm thinking of getting a secured card. Our credit isn't TERRIBLE - it's "just okay", so I think we could go the "normal" route, but i don't really think that'd be wise - considering. I've been checking out the secured card options - they all have annual fees (under $55, from what I've seen), interest rates varying from 9-23% (yikes! But like I said, I'd literally be paying it off as soon as it went through!).
Does anyone have expirience with secured credit cards?
My impression of them is that I'd be giving some company, oh, let's say - $200-$500 to open the card, plus $50 fee, and they'd give me a card - I'd use it to buy Gas, go home, make an online payment - they'll report it to the credit companies, repeat. Done enough it'll improve our credit.
Oh - and I'm looking into cards that report to ALL 3 credit companies...if that matters. I think it does. Hm.