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10 Healthy Ways to Build Credit


5
Get a Retailer Credit Card
Retailer cards are easier to obtain than most credit cards, but the interest is often higher as well.
Retailer cards are easier to obtain than most credit cards, but the interest is often higher as well.
Maria Teijeiro/Digital Vision/Getty Images

Another type of "training wheel" credit card is a card issued by a retail store like Macy's or Sears. In general, retail credit cards are easier to obtain than regular unsecured cards. The downside is that they don't carry as much weight on a credit report as a normal credit card [source: Pulliam Weston].

As you should with any secured credit card, make sure that the retail lender reports to all three credit bureaus. Make sure you read the fine print: Some retail cards carry interest rates as high as 30 percent. So if you're going to use one of those cards, you need to be extra diligent about paying your balance on time.

Some credit experts warn against collecting a bunch of retailer credit cards just to cash in on in-store discounts, particularly around the holidays. Every time you apply for a new card, the lender pulls your credit report. Several hits on your credit report in a short period of time will lower your credit score [source: Ulzheimer].

Another type of retailer card is a gas card or oil company card. These cards can typically only be used to purchase gas or other automotive services, while some allow you to get cash advances at station ATMs [source: Taylor]. Once again, make sure that the card reports to all three credit bureaus.