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Destiny® Mastercard® Review: An Unsecured Card for Building Credit

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Genesis Financial Solutions offers several credit cards for people who have no credit or less-than-perfect credit. With the Destiny® Mastercard®, you can prequalify without impacting your credit and open a new card without a security deposit. Once opened, your account will be reported to the credit bureaus, which can help you build credit.

Destiny® Mastercard®

Apply

on Genesis FS Card Services's website

Recommended FICO® Score
Poor - Good, New to Credit, Rebuilding

APR

24.90%

Intro APR: N/A

Rewards

None

Annual Fee

$59 - $99

Card Details
  • An unsecured Mastercard for less than perfect credit
  • Online servicing available 24/7 at no additional cost
  • Multiple card design options to choose from at no extra charge
  • No security deposit needed
  • Quick pre-qualification is available for those who qualify
  • Worry-free fraud protection if your card is lost or stolen
  • EMV chip included for added peace of mind
  • An opportunity to build and access credit
ProsCons
Doesn't require good creditHigh annual fee
No security depositLow credit limit
Reports to all three credit bureausHigh interest rate
No rewards and few benefits
Genesis FS Customer Service

844-222-5695

15220 NW Greenbrier Pkwy Suite 200
Beaverton, OR 97006

Experian Review

The Destiny® Mastercard® could be a good fit for people who have poor credit and don't want to pay a security deposit to open a new credit card. However, the card has a high annual fee, a low credit limit and lacks rewards or many cardholder benefits. In some cases, you may be better off with a secured card.

No Security Deposit Required, but Annual Fees Are Hefty

As an unsecured credit card, the Destiny® Mastercard® doesn't require you to provide a security deposit to get the card. If you're approved, your account will have a $300 credit limit.

This card's lack of a security deposit is a contrast to the secured credit cards many people use to build or rebuild their credit. With a secured card, you'll need to send the card issuer a refundable security deposit that then may determine your account's credit limit. For example, a $300 security deposit will typically result in a card with a $300 credit limit. Secured card issuers will send you back the security deposit when you close your account or they transition you to an unsecured card, assuming you've kept up payments on the card. If you fail to pay your balance, the issuer can keep some or all of your deposit amount (possibly hurting your credit in the process).

With secured and unsecured cards, you'll want to consider the total cost of having the card, including the annual fees. Depending on the offer you qualify for, the Destiny® Mastercard® will have either:

  • A $75 annual fee the first year and a $99 annual fee after that
  • or

  • An ongoing $59 annual fee

If you get the card with the first offer and keep it for two years, your total cost will be $174. The second offer will cost you $118 over two years.

Looking at two other cards also geared to customers trying to build or rebuild credit, The OpenSky® Secured Visa® Credit Card has a $35 annual fee and the Discover it® Secured card doesn't have any annual fee. While both these cards require a minimum $200 security deposit to open your account (more if you want a credit limit above $200), you can get that money back later.

If you don't want to tie up your money in a deposit, an unsecured card may be a better option. But if you can afford a security deposit, a secured card with no or a low annual fee may provide the most savings in the long run. Once you have good credit, you may also be able to qualify for many unsecured cards that don't have annual fees.

Reports to All Three Credit Bureaus, Helping You Build Credit

One reason to open a credit card when you have poor credit is to help build credit. Paying your bill on time and only using a small portion of your credit limit can show responsible use. But you'll also need your card issuer to report your account to the national credit bureaus, which create your credit reports.

The Destiny® Mastercard® gets reported to all three major bureaus (Experian, TransUnion and Equifax), which is ideal if you're building credit. Many major card issuers report to all three as well, although some card issuers only report to one or two.

If your account isn't reported to a credit bureau, then it can't be included in your credit report from that bureau. If a new credit card account doesn't show up in your credit report, the on-time payments you make on the card won't be able to reflect positively in the credit scores based on that report.

Be Aware of Interest Rate and Fees

The annual fee is the main drawback of the Destiny® Mastercard®, but its high annual percentage rate (APR) is also something to keep in mind. The APR gets applied to your purchases unless you pay off your account balance in full every month, and can accrue daily on new balances if you're carrying a balance from one month to the next.

There's also no rewards program and few cardholder benefits with the Destiny® Mastercard®. Many cards for people with poor credit don't come with these benefits, but there are a few options, including secured cards, that do offer rewards and perks.

In addition to its annual fee, the Destiny® Mastercard® has some other fees you may have to pay depending on how you use the card.

  • 1% foreign transaction fee: A fee on transactions outside the U.S. or in a foreign currency. While some cards have no foreign transaction fees, those that charge the fee often charge 2% to 3%.
  • Up to $40 overlimit fee: You may be able to opt in to overlimit coverage, which lets you spend more than the card's $300 credit limit. But if you opt in and go over the limit, you could be charged up to $40 in overlimit fees. It may be best to remain opted out to avoid accidentally incurring the fee. In addition, carrying a high balance will cause your credit utilization ratio to spike and hurt your credit scores.

On the plus side, you won't pay any cash advance fees during your first year with this card, an uncommon benefit if you plan to use your card to withdraw cash. (After that you'll pay a 5% fee on the amount withdrawn, with a $5 minimum and $100 maximum.) In either case your cash advance will be subject to a high daily interest rate, which is a good reason to avoid using your card to get cash.

There are other common fees as well, such as late and returned payment fees, which you can avoid by making at least your minimum payment on time—and which most cards charge.

Prequalify Without Hurting Your Credit

If you're interested in the Destiny® Mastercard®, you can check to see if you're prequalified for one of its offers with a soft credit inquiry—the type that doesn't impact your credit scores. It's a good first step, as applying for a card can lead to a hard inquiry, which can temporarily hurt your credit scores a little even if you're not approved.

Although you don't need great credit to get the Destiny® Mastercard®, you'll still need to meet the eligibility requirements. For example, you have to have a valid Social Security number and can't previously have had a Destiny® Mastercard® that was charged off because you were behind on payments. However, you may be able to get approved even if you've declared bankruptcy or have a low credit score.

Additional Info

Purchase APR: 24.90% Grace period: 25 days
Transfer APR: N/AAnnual fee: $59 - $99
Cash advance APR: 29.9%Balance transfer fee: N/A
Minimum interest charge: $.50Cash advance fee: $0 for the first year, then 5% ($5 minimum and $100 maximum)
Foreign transaction fee: 1%
Late payment fee: Up to $40
Returned payment fee: Up to $40

Authorized-User Policy

The Destiny® Mastercard® website doesn't clearly state whether you can currently add an authorized user to your account. If the card issuer approves your request, there's no fee for an authorized user and the other person will receive a card linked to your account.

Authorized-user accounts may be reported to the credit bureaus as well, which could help the other person build credit. And while the authorized user can use their credit card (with your permission), you'll be responsible for the total monthly bill.

Is This Card Right for You?

While the Destiny® Mastercard® could be appealing if you're trying to build credit and don't want a secured card, consider the fees and lack of benefits before opening an account. There may be other unsecured cards available with lower fees and more perks. Or, there are secured cards with no annual fees and rewards that could be better long-term options.

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