The Commerce Bank Secured Visa® is not one of our top-rated secured credit cards. You can review our list of the best secured credit cards for what we think are better options.
Full Review of Commerce Bank Secured Visa
High potential credit limit
Reports to the three major credit bureaus
Pays interest on your security deposit
No rewards program
Potentially costly fees
High minimum security deposit
Online applications not accepted
- High Potential Credit Limit: Like most other secured credit cards, the Commerce Bank Secured Visa requires you to put down a security deposit. The minimum deposit is $400, and the maximum is $5,000. That maximum is much higher than many other secured credit cards offer, giving you more spending power and flexibility.
- Reports to the Three Major Credit Bureaus: Commerce Bank reports your payment activity to Equifax, Experian, and TransUnion. If you make all of your payments on time, that will gradually improve your credit. After a period of time, you should be able qualify for an unsecured credit card. Many credit cards report to the major credit bureaus, but not all do. If you’re focused on improving your credit, it’s a good idea to check to see if the card issuer does report payment activity, and to which bureaus, before applying.
- Pays Interest on Your Security Deposit: The security deposit you make with the Commerce Bank Secured Visa is refundable and will earn interest, so you can think of it as a savings account rather than the bank simply holding your funds as collateral. When you close your account, you will get your security deposit back—plus the interest.
- No Rewards Program: Unfortunately, the Commerce Bank Secured Visa doesn’t have a rewards program, so you won’t earn cash back, points, or miles for your purchases. Considering that there are secured credit cards on the market that do offer rewards, that’s a significant drawback. If you want to earn rewards on your routine transactions, consider the Discover it Secured card, instead. You’ll earn 2% cash back at gas stations and restaurants on up to $1,000 in spending each quarter, and unlimited 1% cash back on all other purchases. And, new cardholders qualify for Discover’s cash back match. At the end of the first year, Discover will match all of the cash back you earned. For example, if you earned $200 in rewards, Discover will match it, giving you $400 in cash back.
- Potentially Costly Fees: Before applying for the Commerce Bank Secured Visa, make sure you’re aware of the different fees you may incur. This card charges the following:
- Annual fee: $49
- Foreign transaction fee: 1% of each transaction made in U.S. dollars, 2% of each transaction made in other currencies
- Late payment fees: $5 if your minimum payment due is $25 or less, $15 if it’s more than $25
- Returned payment fee: $25
For a less expensive option, the Secured Mastercard from Capital One can be a good alternative. It has no annual fee or foreign transaction fees, and you can get access to a higher credit limit after making your first five monthly payments on time. The card also offers benefits like travel accident insurance, secondary auto rental collision damage waiver, 24-hour travel assistance services, and extended warranty protection—benefits you rarely see with a secured credit card.
- High Minimum Security Deposit: The Commerce Bank Secured Visa’s minimum security deposit is $400, which is relatively high. Many other secured cards have lower minimums, making them easier to open when cash is tight. For example, the OpenSky Secured Visa has a minimum security deposit of $200. The OpenSky Secured Visa also doesn’t require a credit check, so you can qualify for the card regardless of your credit history.
- Online Applications not Accepted: With most credit cards, you can submit an application online and receive a decision right away. However, that’s not possible with the Commerce Bank Secured Visa. To apply for the card, you must visit a Commerce Bank branch in person. Commerce Bank only serves non-commercial banking customers in Colorado, Illinois, Kansas, Missouri, and Oklahoma. If you want a card that is more widely available, consider the BankAmericard Secured card. It has no annual fee and requires a minimum refundable security deposit of $300. And, you can apply for it online.
This Card is Best For
Motivated to create positive credit history
If your credit score is in the “poor” to “fair” range, you may find it difficult to qualify for a non-secured credit card. According to Equifax, that would mean a score between 280 and 659.
A secured credit card like the Commerce Bank Secured Visa card can be a good way to raise your score. Although the card has an annual fee, it doesn’t charge monthly maintenance fees like some other cards do, so it’s cheaper than some other options for people with bad credit.
Because the card issuer reports your payment activity to the major credit bureaus, using the card and making your payments on time can help improve your credit score. After you have boosted your credit score, you may qualify for an unsecured card that doesn't require a security deposit.
The Commerce Bank Secured Visa card has some basic benefits, including:
- Zero liability coverage
- Credit reporting to the three major credit bureaus
Commerce Bank is not ranked in J.D. Power’s 2019 Credit Card Satisfaction Study.
Cardholders receive monthly access to their FICO credit score, so they can monitor their progress. Customer support is available 24 hours a day, seven days a week. You can call 800-645-2103 for help with your account.
The Commerce Bank Secured Visa has a few standard security features, including zero liability coverage for unauthorized activity.
Fees to Watch Out For
This card charges an annual fee of $49, while some competing cards have no annual fee. It also charges foreign transaction fees, which you can avoid with some other cards. That may not matter, of course, unless you expect to travel outside of the U.S.
If you’re looking for a secured credit card to rebuild your credit, the Commerce Bank Secured Visa is a bare-bones option. It does have a high credit limit if you’re willing to put down a large security deposit, but it doesn’t offer any rewards and charges relatively costly fees. There are other secured cards—such as the Discover it Secured card—that are less expensive to use and offer more rewards and other benefits.