BEST OF

Best Secured Business Credit Cards of June 2022

May 17, 2022

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Secured credit cards can help small-business owners build or rebuild business credit. They require a cash security deposit that the issuer can seize for nonpayment, and the amount of the deposit usually dictates the size of the credit line. Small-business credit cards typically look at personal credit history when deciding whether to approve an application, which is why secured business credit cards can be an option for people with thin credit or low credit scores (below 630).

Many issuers report secured card activity to the credit bureaus, which is how you can strengthen your credit. That can make a secured business credit card a good steppingstone to a more traditional unsecured card while paying your business expenses. In fact, some secured cards may upgrade you to an unsecured card.

However, responsible activity on a secured business credit card may not benefit your personal credit. Most business credit bureaus don't report positive cardholder behavior to consumer credit bureaus. If you need to improve your personal credit to qualify for a business credit card, consider a personal secured credit card instead.

Some of our selections for secured business cards can be applied for through NerdWallet, and some cannot. Here are the best secured credit cards for business owners, followed by the full list of our picks.

NerdWallet's Best Secured Business Credit Cards of June 2022

Best Secured Business Credit Cards

Our pick for

Prequalifying with bad credit

Annual fee

$39

Intro APR

N/A

Regular APR

20.24% Variable

Recommended Credit Score

Pros

  • Qualify with limited / bad credit

Cons

  • Has annual fee

  • No rewards

  • High APR

  • Request your own credit limit between $2,000 and $100,000 (multiples of $50), when you apply, subject to credit approval.

  • Earn interest on your security deposit.

  • Variable 20.24% APR on purchases and balance transfers based on the Prime Rate.

Read full review

Our picks for

Secured credit card to improve personal credit

Apply now

on Capital One's website

Capital One Quicksilver Secured Cash Rewards Credit Card

4.9

NerdWallet rating 
Apply now

on Capital One's website

Annual fee

$0

Intro APR

N/A

Regular APR

26.99% Variable APR

Recommended Credit Score

Pros

  • Qualify with limited/bad credit

  • Reports to the three major credit bureaus

  • Earns rewards

  • No minimum redemption amount

  • Rewards don't expire

  • No annual fee

Cons

  • High APR

  • No new cardholder bonus offer

  • No bonus categories

  • No annual or hidden fees, and you can earn unlimited 1.5% cash back on every purchase, every day. See if you're approved in seconds

  • Put down a refundable $200 security deposit to get a $200 initial credit line

  • Building your credit? Using a card like this responsibly could help

  • Enjoy peace of mind with $0 Fraud Liability so that you won't be responsible for unauthorized charges

  • You could earn back your security deposit as a statement credit when you use your card responsibly, like making payments on time

  • Be automatically considered for a higher credit line in as little as 6 months with no additional deposit needed

  • Earn unlimited 5% cash back on hotels and rental cars booked through Capital One Travel, where you'll get Capital One's best prices on thousands of trip options. Terms apply

  • Monitor your credit score with CreditWise from Capital One. It's free for everyone

Read full review
Apply now

on Discover's website, or call 800-347-0264

Discover it® Secured Credit Card

5.0

NerdWallet rating 
Apply now

on Discover's website, or call 800-347-0264

Annual fee

$0

Intro APR

10.99% intro APR on Balance Transfers for 6 months

Regular APR

23.24% Variable APR

Recommended Credit Score

Pros

  • No annual fee

  • Reports to the three major credit bureaus

  • Qualify with limited/bad credit

  • Earns rewards

  • New cardholder bonus offer

Cons

  • Requires minimum deposit

  • High APR

  • No credit score required to apply.*

  • No Annual Fee, earn cash back, and build your credit with responsible use.

  • Using your secured credit card helps build a credit history with the three major credit bureaus. Generally, prepaid and debit cards can’t do that.

  • Establish your credit line with your tax return by providing a refundable security deposit of at least $200. That means a $200 deposit for a $200 credit line. Or a $500 deposit for a $500 credit line. Bank information must be provided when submitting your deposit, and the security deposit equals your credit limit.

  • Automatic reviews starting at 7 months to see if we can transition you to an unsecured line of credit and return your deposit.*

  • Earn 2% cash back at Gas Stations and Restaurants on up to $1,000 in combined purchases each quarter. Plus, earn unlimited 1% cash back on all other purchases – automatically.

  • Get an alert if we find your Social Security number on any of thousands of Dark Web sites.* Activate for free.

  • Click "APPLY NOW" to see rewards, FICO® Credit Score terms, Cashback Match™ details & other information.

  • View Rates & Fees
Read full review

Our pick for

Non-secured business credit card for entrepreneurs with thin credit

Apply now

on Brex's website

Brex Card

3.3

NerdWallet rating 
Apply now

on Brex's website

Annual fee

$0

Intro APR

N/A

Regular APR

N/A

Recommended Credit Score

Pros

  • No annual fee

  • New cardholder bonus offer

  • Qualify with limited/bad credit

  • Bonus categories

  • No foreign transaction fees

  • No personal guarantee

Cons

  • Complicated rewards

  • No Intro APR

  • No revolving balances

  • Get 10,000 points when you spend your first $1,000 on your Brex card, another 10,000 when you spend $3,000 in 3 months on your card, and 20,000 more when you link payroll to your Brex account.

  • No personal guarantee needed – Brex does not ask for a personal credit check or security deposit during the application.

  • Credit limits 10-20x higher than traditional small business corporate cards.

  • Minimum bank balance of $50,000 from professional investors may be required to qualify for Brex.

  • Exclusive signup offers from the best products and tools for your business (e.g. AWS, Google Ads, WeWork, Salesforce) worth up to $150,000 in value.

  • Earn points on every dollar spent with industry-leading multipliers: 7x on rideshare, 4x on Brex Travel, 3x on restaurants, 2x on software subscriptions and 1x on all other transactions.

  • Earn 3x Brex Rewards points on all eligible Apple purchases through the link or your Brex dashboard.

  • Miles transfer program to 7 airlines (including Singapore Airlines, Qantas, Air France, and more) and their loyalty programs, giving Brex customers access to book travel across all of the major global airline alliances - Star Alliance, Oneworld, and SkyTeam.

  • 30-day charge card running on the Mastercard network. Enjoy global acceptance with no foreign transaction fees.

  • Build business credit: Brex partners with Dun & Bradstreet and Experian to report your on-time payments.

  • Make employee expenses seamless - automated receipt-capture and expense matching and reconciliation via text, email, and mobile app. Instantly add new users and set spending limits.

  • Contactless pay with Apple Pay, Google Pay, and Samsung Pay.

  • Simplify reconciliation with built-in integrations with QuickBooks, Xero, NetSuite, and more.

Read full review

FULL LIST OF EDITORIAL PICKS: BEST SECURED BUSINESS CREDIT CARDS AND MORE

Not every card on this list is a secured business credit card, but different options may make sense depending on whether your business or personal credit is thin or poor. Click the card name to read our review. Before applying, confirm details on the issuer’s website.

Secured business credit cards to build business credit

Our pick for: Prequalifying with bad credit

The First National Bank Business Edition® Secured® Visa Card requires a credit check, but you may pre-qualify without affecting your credit score to see if you’re eligible. Your security deposit earns interest, and you can choose a credit limit from $2,000 to $100,000 (in multiples of $50) when you apply. This card charges a $39 annual fee. Read our review.

Our pick for: Straightforward rewards with no or poor credit

Secured business credit cards aren’t necessarily known for their perks. But the BBVA Secured Visa® Business Credit Card offers a competitive 1.5 points for every dollar on qualified purchases and no annual fee for the first year ($40 thereafter). Note that BBVA is a regional bank, and its secured credit card is available in seven states only: Alabama, Arizona, California, Colorado, Florida, New Mexico and Texas. Read our review.

Wells Fargo Business Secured Credit Card

Our pick for: Cash back rewards

The Wells Fargo Business Secured Credit Card gets you 1.5% cash back for every $1 spent with no maximum. You can opt for points-based rewards instead; each dollar is worth a point. And you can qualify to earn up to 1,000 bonus points per company per month. There’s no annual fee for this card.

The information related to the Wells Fargo Business Secured Credit Card has been collected by NerdWallet and has not been reviewed or provided by the issuer or provider of this product or service.

Business credit cards for thin or poor credit

Our pick for: Applicants with fair or average credit

Although the Capital One® Spark® Classic for Business isn't actually a secured card and comes with a high APR, this card is available to business operators with fair or "average" credit, who typically don't have a lot of options in business credit cards. That’s a plus, especially with a $0 annual fee. Read our review. 

Our pick for: No personal guarantee

If you’re struggling to find business funding because of a low personal credit score, consider Brex. The issuer determines an applicant's creditworthiness by evaluating the company's cash balance, spending patterns and investors rather than the business owner's personal credit score. Read our review.

Secured credit cards to help personal credit

Our pick for: Simplicity

The Capital One Quicksilver Secured Cash Rewards Credit Card offers an impressive combination of features for those with poor credit. A deposit is required, but in exchange you get a $0-annual-fee card that reports to all three credit bureaus; an automatic credit limit review after six months; and a possible upgrade path to an unsecured Capital One card. Oh, and 5% back on hotels and rental cars booked through Capital One Travel, plus 1.5% back on all other purchases, which equals what you'd find on many unsecured cards. Read our review.

Our pick for: Business owners who want to graduate to an unsecured credit card.

This personal secured credit card offers a generous cash-back program, and responsible habits will automatically trigger an evaluation from Discover after seven months of holding the card. Note that your original deposit, or security, must be paid through a bank account. Read the review.

How to use a secured business credit card effectively

Here are a few ways to make the most of a secured business credit card:

  1. Use the card once in a while, making one or two small purchases every month.

  2. Pay your balance in full every month before the due date. That way, you won't be charged interest. Interest rates on secured cards are generally higher than on unsecured cards.

  3. Watch your credit score. When it has improved, see if your issuer can upgrade you to an unsecured card.

How fast can a secured business credit card build credit?

Typically, it takes about a year of using a secured credit card to change a credit score enough to qualify for an unsecured card. Sometimes, you can simply move your secured line to an unsecured line, which can be better for your credit score because it doesn't require opening a new account. However, if you do end up opening a new account to get an unsecured line, there are still a lot of benefits: lower interest rates and fees, better rewards and proof that you have good credit.

Alternatives to secured business credit cards

If you have a credit score of 630 or above, you may want to skip applying for a secured business credit card and opt for something with more options or lower interest rates and fees. And even if you have a thin credit history or don’t have a great credit score, there are other types of business cards out there for you, too.

Business debit cards

Debit cards aren’t credit cards, as spending is tied to the cash balance in a linked business checking account. But business debit cards typically don’t require a credit check and may make sense for business owners who want to use plastic to better keep track of their transactions or their employees’ spending.

Nonbusiness credit cards

You don’t necessarily need a business credit card for business finances. If you’re a sole proprietor with bad or thin credit, you could get a separate personal secured credit card. These cards may help your personal credit — a must for future financing — but they’ll lack features like employee cards and often come with lower limits than business credit cards. Just be sure to keep your business and personal spending separate.

If you’re unsure whether you’ll pass a credit check, some business credit card issuers will let you pre-qualify. This process tells you whether you’ll likely be approved without affecting your personal credit score. It can also make sense to get a free credit score before applying. That way, you can find cards you may be eligible for and reduce the risk of failing a credit check.

Bad-credit business loans

If you want to grow your business credit but don't have ideal personal credit, a secured business credit card isn't your only option. Bad credit business loans are available from online lenders, and successfully repaying this financing may help establish your business credit score. These loans may come with high interest rates, though, so make sure you'll be able to afford the payments before you borrow.

Last updated on May 17, 2022

Methodology

NerdWallet's Credit Cards team selects the best credit cards for small business based on overall consumer value, as evidenced by star ratings, as well as their suitability for specific kinds of small-business operators. Factors in our evaluation include annual and other fees, rewards rates, the earning structure (for example, flat-rate rewards versus bonus categories), redemption options, bonus offers for new cardholders, introductory and ongoing APRs, and other noteworthy features such as special financing arrangements, free cards for employees or tools for managing business expenses.