Social Question

JLeslie's avatar

How hard is it for a teenager to get a credit card now?

Asked by JLeslie (60813points) April 15th, 2011

Can an 18 year old still get a really low balance credit card as a first card? Or, does a parent have to co-sign?

Is it easier at say Target? Than a bank Visa? Or, Amex?

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14 Answers

Stefaniebby's avatar

I’m not 100% sure But I’m thinking it depends on that 18 year olds income if they actually are approved with the card and I’m pretty sure a parent doesn’t have to co-sign after you’re 18.

Personally (Being 19) If I were to get a credit card I would go with one like Target, Old Navy, or one with my bank.

MyNewtBoobs's avatar

3 or 4 years ago they had “student” cards meant to prey on the young and naive help young adults build credit. But I don’t know how that’s changed since the new credit laws have passed.

Tropical_Willie's avatar

Go to a local college. Look on the Bulletin boards – Chase and certainly others banks still target college students. Also setting up an account with your bank in their name could lead to a “credit card”.

optimisticpessimist's avatar

“When the new laws take effect you will need to be at least 21 years old to get a credit card without a co-signer or verifiable income. Teens will still be able to apply for a credit card once they turn 18, but to qualify they will need to either have their parents or guardian co-sign or have a job earning enough income to qualify for a card.”

From here. It is from before the law took affect, but still gives the information just in future tense.

Mariah's avatar

There are still student cards, but I applied for one and got denied due to “insufficient credit history.” What student is going to have extensive credit history?! These are tough times.

YoBob's avatar

The easiest for teenagers is to get them one of those re-loadable pre-paid cards.

The get all of the convenience of a credit card with no credit check or age restrictions and they are limited in the amount of “damage” they can do by the fact that they can only spend up to the amount that is on the card. It’s a great way to introduce them about keeping track of their spending habits when using the convenience of that magic card.

JLeslie's avatar

@optimisticpessimist That sucks. So for young adults out in the real world after high school they cannot get credit, still dependent on their parents or guardians when they may longer actually be dependents.

JLeslie's avatar

@YoBob But it doesn’t build credit, right? Doesn’t help their credit report?

Michael_Huntington's avatar

@Mariah That is ridiculous. Which bank did you go to?
I don’t think it’s hard to get a credit card at all. I got mine last year and my credit limit was $1500.

optimisticpessimist's avatar

@JLeslie It did say if they had an income they could get it without the parent/guardian. A secured credit card is really good idea for a first credit card anyway. It builds your credit history and if you find out you are not really good with credit, you already have the secured amount available to pay it off and close the credit card.

JLeslie's avatar

@optimisticpessimist So a secured card builds credit? How? Isn’t it basically a debit card? The money is already on the card? Or, maybe I don’t understand what a secured card is.

@Michael_Huntington Were you under 21 when you got it?

JLeslie's avatar

@optimisticpessimist Oh yeah, I saw where it says if they have an income they can get a credit card under 21. That makes sense I guess.

optimisticpessimist's avatar

@JLeslie It builds credit because it is still listed and used as a credit card. You make payments like you would with a regular card; however, they have the money ‘secured’ already in an account in case you default on the payments. If dealing with a reputable company, they money in your account will stay there unless you default. After a period of time (dependent upon the institutions’ policies), your credit card can become an unsecured one and the deposit you placed as security would revert back to you.

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