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Compare Adverse & Credit Building Credit Cards

Re-Build Your Credit History With a Credit Building Card

Credit Building credit cards allow people with no credit history or those with a low credit score to improve and rebuild their credit profile. Find a Credit Building credit card deal that suits you from leading UK banks and financial providers and apply online.

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Expert Choice Credit Cards
Balance Transfers Purchases
Credit Card Rate Duration Fee Rate Duration Representative APR Apply
Capital One
N/A N/A N/A N/A N/A 28.9%Variable
Great for people who want to build or rebuild their credit history. Credit limit from £200 to £1,500. Helps you keep on top of your spending with email alerts. 28.9% APR Representative variable.
Representative Example: If you borrow £1200 at a purchase rate of 28.94% p.a.(variable), you will pay 28.9% APR Representative (variable).

Capital One | Classic Preferred Card (Excl)

Aqua
N/A N/A N/A N/A N/A 29.7%Variable
More Info£25 Cash Back
Welcome to aqua Classic – credit where credit’s due. We take a closer look at applications and pride ourselves in giving people credit when others won't. An initial credit limit of £100 - £1,600 and a possible increase after 4 months. 51 days interest free credit every month. No annual fee. Representative 29.7% APR (variable). Free aqua Credit Checker, worth up to £80.
Representative Example: If you borrow £1200 at a purchase rate of 29.71% p.a.(variable), you will pay 29.7% APR Representative (variable).

Aqua | Classic Card (29.7%)

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Aquis
N/A N/A N/A N/A N/A 29.8%Variable
Managing your money couldn’t be simpler with an Aquis Visa card. You’ll have 24/7 control of your account with Online and SMS Account Management. And if you’re new to credit or have had a few credit issues lately, the Aquis Visa card can help you rebuild your credit rating. Representative 29.8% APR (variable). Apply today - and get back on track with an Aquis Visa card. Credit has been provided by Vanquis Bank Limited.
Representative Example: If you borrow £1000 at a purchase rate of 29.84% p.a.(variable), you will pay 29.8% APR Representative (variable).

Aquis | Credit Card

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Barclaycard
N/A N/A N/A 0.0% 3 Months 34.9%Variable
More Info£25 Cash Back

Can help to build your credit rating. Suitable if your financial situation has been improving. You must be over 18 years of age, earn over £3,000 a year and not be unemployed. You must not have been made bankrupt in the last six years – including having an Individual Voluntary Arrangement or Debt Relief Order. You must not have more than one County Court Judgement or recently missed a bill payment. Manageable credit limits from £250 - £1,000. Great for: being able to reduce your interest rate by always paying on time and staying within your credit limit. 0% interest on purchases for 3 months from account opening.

Representative Example: If you borrow £1200 at a purchase rate of 34.9% p.a.(variable), you will pay 34.9% APR Representative (variable).

Barclaycard | Initial Credit Card

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Capital One
N/A N/A N/A N/A N/A 34.9%Variable
A credit card offer for people who want to build or rebuild their credit history. Low, easy-to-manage credit limit from £200.
Representative Example: If you borrow £1200 at a purchase rate of 34.94% p.a.(variable), you will pay 34.9% APR Representative (variable).

Capital One | Classic Card

Aqua
N/A N/A N/A N/A N/A 34.9%Variable
More Info£25 Cash Back
aqua Advance - cut your interest rate by 15% over 3 years. Been turned down for credit before? Don’t take no for an answer and apply for an aqua Advance credit card today. The aqua Advance credit card offers the potential to reduce your interest rate by 15% over 3 years, giving you the chance to prove your financial setbacks are firmly in the past. You start on 34.9% APR representative variable, but you’ll soon get the chance to reduce your interest rate by 5% each year for 3 years. Just make sure you pay at least the minimum amount due on time and keep within your credit limit. At the end of 3 years you could end up with an APR of only 19.9%, and a very positive effect on your overall credit rating. Free aqua Credit Checker, worth up to £80.
Representative Example: If you borrow £1200 at a purchase rate of 34.92% p.a.(variable), you will pay 34.9% APR Representative (variable).

Aqua | Advance Card

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Vanquis Bank Ltd
N/A N/A N/A N/A N/A 39.9%Variable
Vanquis considers every application on its own merits, so we encourage you to apply even if you have had credit problems in the past. No annual fee. Up to 56 days interest free on purchases. Free additional cardholder (only after 6 months). Free fraud monitoring - we'll warn you of any suspicious activity on your account. Chip & PIN technology for added security whenever you use your card. Visa is widely accepted in the UK and abroad. Convenient for paying online and over the phone.
Representative Example: If you borrow £1000 at a purchase rate of 39.94% p.a.(variable), you will pay 39.9% APR Representative (variable).

Vanquis Bank Ltd | Visa Card

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Argos
N/A N/A N/A N/A N/A 39.9%Variable
Start with a manageable credit limit between £150 and £1000. You could get a credit limit increase on your 4th statement (Conditions apply). And further increases every 4 months, up to £3,000 (Conditions apply). To be considered for a credit limit increase, please keep all your credit agreements in order by paying on time, making use of your existing credit limit without going over your credit limit, and not taking on too much debt elsewhere. This is only a guide and meeting these criteria does not guarantee you a credit limit increase. Representative 39.9% APR (variable). You must not have applied for a Vanquis, Granite, Aquis or Black Diamond Card within the last 6 months. Do not apply for the Argos Credit Card if you currently hold a Vanquis, Granite, Aquis or Black Diamond Card. Credit is provided by Vanquis Bank Limited.
Representative Example: If you borrow £1000 at a purchase rate of 39.84% p.a.(variable), you will pay 39.9% APR Representative (variable).

Argos | Credit Card

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Aqua
N/A N/A N/A N/A N/A 39.9%Variable
More Info£25 Cash Back
Welcome to aqua Classic  – credit where credit’s due. We take a closer look at applications and pride ourselves in giving people credit when others won't.  An initial credit limit of £100 - £1,600 and a possible increase after 4 months. Flexible payment dates. 51 days interest free credit every month. Representative 39.9% APR (variable). Free aqua Credit Checker, worth up to £80.
Representative Example: If you borrow £1200 at a purchase rate of 39.94% p.a.(variable), you will pay 39.9% APR Representative (variable).

Aqua | Classic Card (39.9%)

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Black Diamond
N/A N/A N/A N/A N/A 59.9%Variable
A great way to build your credit if you're new to credit or want to rebuild your credit. Initial credit limit from £150 to £1,000. No annual or monthly fees. Build your credit limit. Credit has been provided by Vanquis Bank Limited.
Representative Example: If you borrow £1000 at a purchase rate of 59.94% p.a.(variable), you will pay 59.9% APR Representative (variable).

Black Diamond | Credit Card

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Credit builder credit cards

Credit cards can bring a number of benefits. They provide an easy way to pay for goods and services, whether in person, online or by phone and can be a convenient alternative or supplement to carrying cash. If you have a poor credit rating you may find it difficult to successfully apply for premium or mainstream credit cards and other forms of credit such as personal loans. Credit builder credit cards are designed specially for people with poor or non-existent credit histories.

What are credit builder credit cards?

Credit building cards are simply credit cards designed for people who have trouble qualifying for other credit cards due to poor credit ratings. They usually have high interest rates and low credit limits – the maximum you are allowed to spend – that reflect the increased risk of a customer with a poor credit rating.

What are the benefits?

A credit building card allows a customer to access credit where they might otherwise not be able to. Unlike a debit card, which draws on existing funds in a bank account, a credit card basically allows you to borrow money every time you use it. Most credit cards, including credit builders, have interest-free periods. If you pay the balance back in full before the end of this period, you will not usually have to pay any interest on the account. The due date will be on your regular monthly statement.

If you use a credit building card sensibly and make at least your minimum payment each month, you may also start to repair a damaged credit rating or build up a credit history if you have not previously had one. It can be a slow process but eventually you should be able to qualify for credit cards with better rates of interest as well as other forms of credit.

How do credit building cards work?

Credit building credit cards work in the same way as ordinary credit cards. You can make purchases either in person using your PIN (or, though less common these days, by presenting your signature), online or over the phone. You can usually also make cash withdrawals at an ATM, although some credit builders may have limits on this and the interest rates for these cash advances can be extremely high.

As long as you use them sensibly and make your repayments in time, they can also help you repair a damaged credit rating or build one up from scratch. People who have never had a credit card or been in debt often express surprise that they are not considered a good or low-risk prospect by credit providers. The reality is that if you have never borrowed before, lenders simply do not know how responsible of a borrower you will be now or in the future.

In order to understand how a credit building card works, you should also understand how the credit rating system works. Credit reference agencies collect information taken from credit providers, financial institutions and documents of public records such as County Court Judgements (CCJs). They use this data to produce reports that they then sell to credit providers. These lenders use the credit reports, alongside other information such as that provided on application forms, to decide whether to offer credit to an applicant and on what terms.

One of the most important aspects of your credit report is your recent credit history. Details such as the date on which credit accounts were opened, the credit limit and details of any missed payments are usually held for six years after an account is closed. If you have regularly missed payments or defaulted on a loan in the past, this can have a hugely negative effect on your current credit rating.

Conversely, holding a credit building credit card and making all your payments in time will show up on your credit report and have a beneficial effect.

It's worth noting that every application you make for credit also shows up on your credit report. It does not show whether the application is successful but making multiple applications for credit is generally seen as a bad sign by lenders. If you find you are being turned down for mainstream credit cards, continuing to apply for them could in itself harm your credit rating.

What are the drawbacks?

As credit building cards are designed for people with poor credit ratings who may be considered comparatively high risk, they usually have far higher interest rates than other credit cards. When you compare credit builder cards it generally makes sense to go for the one with the lowest interest rate but other issues such as available credit limit could also affect your decision. Credit builder cards also usually have lower credit limits than more mainstream cards.

If you pay off your balance in full each month the interest rate shouldn't really be too much of a issue. If you do have an outstanding balance however, you will be charged interest on whatever you owe and this will cost more than it would on a card with a lower interest rate. Even if you fully intend to pay your balance, unexpected expenses could crop up or there may be some other reason why you are unable to pay the balance in full in any particular month.

If you cannot pay off the balance you should at least pay the minimum amount due. Failure to do so could lead to penalties and is also likely to have a negative affect on an already poor credit rating.

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