Thursday, August 19, 2010

The Best Starter Credit Cards

Credit card companies frequently setup tables on college campuses these days, and often prey on vulnerable students who are already strapped for cash. Luckily, new laws have tightened restrictions on banks that offer credit to students, such as income and age requirements. put together a great article on which credit cards are the best for “credit virgins,” read more below.

Laura Lee got her first credit card during the freshman Welcome Week at Central Michigan University.

“[Representatives] sat at a long table in the Student Union just outside the large conference room with displays from all the on-campus student organizations,” she tells MainStreet. “[I could] sign up for a Sears card, get a $5 gift certificate and a tote bag full of gifts.”

The opportunities to take on credit didn’t end there, however. Weeks later, applications from Citibank, Discover Card, J.C. Penney and Chase started appearing in her dorm room mailbox. By the holiday season, Lee’s wallet was bulging with plastic.

“They all welcomed this 18-year-old consumer with open arms,” she says.

Of course, credit issuers aren’t giving out cards quite so readily these days. Under the CARD Act, companies are now prohibited from issuing credit to anyone under 21 unless the applicant has a stable source of income or a willing co-signer. But college freshmen aren’t the only ones faced with roadblocks when trying to establish credit.

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