The First Progress Platinum Elite Mastercard® Secured Credit Card Review

First Progress Platinum Elite Review
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The First Progress Platinum Elite Mastercard® Secured Credit Card comes with low fees, and is a great way to build credit responsibly.
  • Annual Fee:
    $29
  • Regular APR:
    22.24% (V)
  • Recommended Credit Score:
    Limited Credit History, Bad Credit

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If you have bad or no credit but need a credit card, you may hit a brick wall. First Progress, however, offers a solution with their credit builder secured credit card. You don’t need a minimum credit score, and your credit line equals your security deposit.

But is the First Progress Platinum Elite Mastercard® Secured Credit Card worth it? Check out our review below.

First Progress Platinum Elite Mastercard® Secured Credit Card Pros and Cons

Pros:

  • No minimum credit score required
  • Your credit line equals the amount you can put down
  • You can get approved fast
  • The APR is competitive
  • Low annual Fee

Cons:

  • No rewards
  • The annual Fee lowers your credit line
  • No automatic upgrade to an unsecured credit card

What Is the First Progress Platinum Elite Mastercard® Secured Credit Card?

The First Progress Platinum Elite Mastercard® Secured Credit Card is a credit building credit card. It doesn’t require a minimum credit score or credit history length.

Your credit line equals your security deposit, and First Progress reports your account to all three credit bureaus to help you build or improve your credit history.

How Does the First Progress Platinum Elite Mastercard® Secured Credit Card Work?

The First Progress Platinum Elite Mastercard® Secured Credit Card is a secured credit card. This means you must make a security deposit equal to your credit line.

First Progress allows credit lines from $200 – $2,000. If you put down $200, you have a $200 credit line – if you put down $1,000, you have a $1,000 credit line.

From there, it works just like a credit card. You can charge purchases and make at least the minimum payment each month. It’s best if you pay your balance off in full each month, though, to increase your credit score faster.

If you don’t pay your bill, First Progress keeps your security deposit, and you no longer have a credit line.

First Progress Platinum Elite Mastercard® Secured Credit Card Review

  • Regular APR: 22.24%
  • Annual Fee: $29
  • Recommended Credit Score: n/a

First Progress Platinum Elite Mastercard® Secured Credit Card Features and Benefits

Reports to All Three Credit Bureaus

The point of the First Progress Platinum Elite Mastercard® Secured Credit Card is to fix or build credit. That’s why it’s such a benefit that First Progress reports to all three credit bureaus.

If you pay your bill on time and don’t have over 30% of your credit line outstanding, it should help build your credit score back up.

Low Annual Fee

While no annual fee is better, the First Progress annual fee isn’t bad at $29 per year. Many other secured credit cards have much higher annual fees, making them unaffordable.

Low Variable APR

Credit cards are known for their high APRs, especially secured credit cards. However, the First Progress Platinum Elite Mastercard® Secured Credit Card has a 22.24% APR, which is low considering. It’s best to pay your balance off in full rather than carrying a balance.

Easy to Qualify For

The First Progress Platinum Elite Mastercard® Secured Credit Card doesn’t have a lot of requirements. For starters, you don’t need a specific credit score.

You also don’t need a specific credit history length. Most people who can prove they can pay their bill and make a security deposit get approved.

How Does the First Progress Platinum Elite Mastercard® Secured Credit Card Compare?

#1. OpenSky® Secured Visa® Credit Card

OpenSky offers another secured credit card option for people looking to build credit. The OpenSky® Secured Visa® Credit Card reports your account to all three credit bureaus. While they check your credit, they allow consumers with low credit scores to get approved.

Like First Progress, your credit line can start at $200 and up, and it doesn’t offer any rewards, but it has a competitive APR and helps consumers who can’t get an unsecured card get a credit card.

#2. Petal® 2 “Cash Back, No Fees” Visa® Credit Card

The Petal® 2 “Cash Back, No Fees” Visa® Credit Cardis an unsecured credit building credit card. You don’t need a security deposit or a high credit score.

There’s no annual fee, and you may even earn rewards. The card pays 1% cashback on all purchases, and after 12 months, if you have on-time payments, they pay 1.5% cashback.

The APR varies based on your qualifying factors (credit score) and can range from 12.99% – 26.99%. Like First Progress, the Petal® 2 “Cash Back, No Fees” Visa® Credit Card reports to all three credit bureaus.

#3. Self Visa® Credit Card

The Self Visa® Credit Card is another secured credit card, but with a twist. You must have a Self Credit Builder Loan account first.

The credit builder account is like a reverse personal loan. You take out the loan but don’t receive the proceeds. They sit in a bank account and earn interest, but you make payments on it. Self reports the payments to the credit bureau to help you build credit.

Once you have the Self Credit Builder account, you can apply for the Self Visa® Credit Card. It has a $25 annual fee and a 23.99% APR.

You don’t need a security deposit even though it’s a secured card because it uses the credit builder account as collateral.

#4. Discover it® Secured Credit Card

The Discover it® Secured Credit Card is another secured credit card option. But it’s more favorable than the others because it doesn’t have an annual fee and you can earn cashback. You can open a credit line of $200 – $2,000 and earn 2% cash back on restaurant and grocery purchases. You’ll also earn 1% on all other purchases.

The Discover it® Secured Credit Card starts at 10.99% APR and increases to 22.99% after 6 months. Discover reports to all three credit bureaus like First Progress, and you may be eligible for an unsecured card after 8 months.

#5. Secured Mastercard® from Capital One

The Secured Mastercard® from Capital One is another secured credit card option, but with a twist. Your credit line may not equal your deposit. If you have good qualifying factors, you may not need to put down the entire security deposit. For example, a $200 credit line may require a $49, $99, or $200 deposit.

After six months, Capital One may increase your credit line or even approve you for an unsecured credit card. Capital One has many options.

Frequently Asked Questions

Is the First Progress Platinum Elite Mastercard® a Good Credit Card?

The First Progress Platinum Elite Mastercard® is a secured credit card with favorable options. Yes, there is an annual fee, but it’s low, and its APR is average too.

If you need a secured credit card and don’t qualify for one from Discover or Capital One, then First Progress can be a good option. First Progress Credit Cards are a great steppingstone and can help you build credit responsibly.

Is it Hard to Qualify for the First Progress Platinum Elite Mastercard®?

No, qualifying for the First Progress Platinum Elite Mastercard® is easy. You don’t need a specific credit score or to meet certain qualifying factors.

Since your credit line equals your security deposit, it’s easier to qualify since First Progress knows they’ll get their money back. This is the same for the First Progress Platinum Select and First Progress Platinum Prestige.

Bottom Line: First Progress Platinum Elite Mastercard® Secured Credit Card Review

If you’re looking for a flexible secured credit card, the First Progress Platinum Elite Mastercard® is a good option. While there are cheaper options available, not everyone qualifies for them.

First Progress doesn’t check your credit, so if you have bad (or no) credit, it may be your best option until you build credit.

Kim Pinnelli
Kim Pinnelli

Kim Pinnelli is a Senior Writer, Editor, & Product Analyst with a Bachelor’s Degree in Finance from the University of Illinois at Chicago. She has been a professional financial writer for over 15 years, and has appeared in a myriad of industry leading financial media outlets. Leveraging her personal experience, Kim is committed to helping people take charge of their personal finances and make simple financial decisions.