The Primor credit card is deceptively simple. It is a credit card, but not quite as you know it. If you want to find out more about this intriguing innovation, then read on for an unbiased review of what the card can offer you– and what the potential downsides might be.
What Is The Primor Secured Credit Card?
The idea behind the card is relatively easy to understand. It is best compared to an application for a standard credit card. Standard credit cards are usually issued following a credit check; a search of your financial history. This allows the card issuer to judge whether or not you are a good candidate for lending. Hundreds of thousands of people have credit cards, all obtained through a similar process.
However, there’s a catch; that credit check. A huge number of people are living with poor credit scores, meaning that they cannot find a card issuer who is willing to lend to them.
Most frustratingly, this means that you can find yourself in a vicious cycle. To be able to improve your credit score, you have to use credit. Your ability to use and repay credit is one of the fundamental behavior patterns that your credit score is based on. If you don’t actually have a credit card, then how can you use credit? How can you improve your credit score for the future?
The standard answer is: you can’t. It’s a ridiculous situation that millions of people find themselves in; and it’s a situation that the Primor secured credit card is designed to help alleviate.
Rather than passing a credit check to obtain a Primor credit card, you make a deposit. With Primor, this can be any amount from $200 to $5,000. Primor will then hold this amount as a security; you won’t have access to it.
What do you get in return? A credit line. Primor will give you a card limit equal to the value of your deposit; if you deposit $1,000, then your credit line will be $1,000. You can then use the Primor card as you would a credit card. It’s accepted at all the usual retailers, and you’ll be required to make payments and clear your balance just like you would with a standard card.
As for that deposit; Primor keep hold of this as security against your credit line. You can’t use your security to pay your minimum payments or clear your balance. The security is there as a protection for Primor, just in case you fail to make a payment.
What Does The Primor Card Offer?
On the surface, plenty of good things. Access to a credit card for those who can’t otherwise obtain one is hugely beneficial. You’ll also have the chance to start repairing your credit score, as Primor report to all three major credit reference bureaus. If you maintain your credit line correctly, then your score will begin to rise.
It’s easy to understand why people might need the Primor credit card, so you have to give them props for coming up with a solution to an otherwise ridiculous problem that many people find themselves trapped in.
What Is The Primor Secured Credit Card Like To Own?
There’s good news and bad news here. Let’s start with the bad, so the good news can cheer us up.
It’s worth noting that the lowest deposit amount is $200. That’s still a fair amount of money for some people. Primor don’t offer an immediate access to credit; you have to be able to build up enough cash to be able to fund your initial security deposit. It could be said that this teaches good financial management, though, so perhaps this isn’t such a bad thing.
There is also an annual fee for a Primor card, which stands at $39. This is an additional expense that people in poor financial circumstances may struggle with. It breaks down to just $3.25 per month, however, which seems a little easier to handle. What’s more, users don’t have to outright find the cash for this; the amount is applied to their credit balance, so they can pay it off as they can afford. While the fee does seem a little steep, it’s comparable with other secured credit cards, so there’s nothing too extortionate here.
So now, the good news. The Primor card offers something that other secured cards definitely don’t; an extremely competitive APR. The APR for the Primor card is just 13.99%, which is a decent enough APR for a standard credit card, never mind a secured credit card. This is a fantastic rate if you’re not certain you’re going to be able to pay off your balance every month; such as when you need the card for emergencies that you would otherwise struggle to afford.
It’s always best to try and find the credit card (standard or secured) with the lowest APR, and it seems that the Primor deal is the best you will get with a secured credit card. So this is definitely a huge plus in its favor. While it’s always best not to have to carry a balance on your credit card, we can be realists and acknowledge that sometimes, that’s a necessity. If you find yourself in that situation, knowing you have a small APR to tackle means that you should be able to clear your balance faster.
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Another plus is that Primor do not do a credit search. Sometimes, credit card companies will imply they don’t do a credit search, offering an “eligibility check” instead. However, you’ll then discover you have to undergo a full credit check to be allowed the card. Primor genuinely don’t do this.
Admittedly, the annual fee is pretty sharp, which is a mark down for the Primor secured credit card. Also, while the APR is on the low side for secured cards, if you carry a high balance, then you could find yourself in trouble.
However, these small downsides apart, it’s clear the Primor credit card is offering a solution that people need. If you have no other way of obtaining a credit card — and thus no way of improving your credit score — then you’ll be thankful to have such an option at your disposal. It’d be nice if the fee was a little lower, but compared to what the card can buy you in terms of creditworthiness, it seems like a good deal.