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Amalgamated Bank Reviews: Checking, Savings, CD, Money Market, and IRA Accounts

Editorial Note: The content of this article is based on the author’s opinions and recommendations alone. It has not been previewed, commissioned or otherwise endorsed by any of our network partners.

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Amalgamated Bank’s checking account options

Online Checking

This interest-bearing checking account has no monthly maintenance fees and comes with added protections on your debit card.

APY

Minimum Balance Amount

0.10%

none

0.20%

$2,500

  • Minimum opening deposit: $0
  • Monthly account maintenance fee: $0
  • ATM fee: Free at Amalgamated Bank and Allpoint ATMs, $1.50 for out-of-network ATMs
  • ATM fee refund: Up to two domestic transactions per month
  • Overdraft fee: $10

This checking account is best for those who intend on using the account for their everyday banking. This tiered checking account comes with mobile banking and an enhanced Mastercard debit card. Some of the perks include: price guarantee, satisfaction guarantee and extended warranty for qualified purchases. Most of these only allow up to four claims per year.

Account holders are also eligible to participate in the Donate The Change program, which supports a bank-selected non-profit organization every time you make a purchase with your debit card. Once you open an account and receive your debit card, Amalgamated Bank will donate 10 cents (up to $200) every time you make a $10 debit card purchase. Currently, the bank is supporting The Solutions Project, a nonprofit supporting clean energy solutions.

How to get the Online Checking account

You can only apply for this checking account online. To do so, head over to Amalgamated Bank’s site and complete an application form. You’ll need to provide personal information such as your name, address, a government-issued ID and your Social Security number. Then you’ll need to fund the account.

SEE DETAILS Secured

on Amalgamated Bank’s secure website

Member FDIC

Give-Back Checking

The bank’s contribution of an amount equal to half the interest you earn to an organization of your choosing is a key feature of this account.

APY

Minimum Balance Amount

0.10%

none

0.15%

$2,500

  • Minimum opening deposit: $0
  • Monthly account maintenance fee: $0
  • ATM fee: Free at Amalgamated Bank and Allpoint ATMs, $1.50 for out-of-network ATMs
  • ATM fee refund: Up to two domestic transactions per month
  • Overdraft fee: $34

This checking account is great for those who are looking for an everyday checking account and an opportunity to help fund worthy progressive causes. While the Online Checking account has a philanthropic component, the Give-Back account lets you choose from a list of participating organizations and the bank will donate the equivalent of half of the interest you earn on your behalf. You can review the list of organizations account holders can select by heading to their site.

Other features of the account include free mobile banking and an enhanced Mastercard debit card. This card gives some consumer perks such as satisfaction guarantee, extended warranty and price guarantee for qualified purchases, usually up to four claims each year.

How to get the Give-Back Checking account

First, you’ll need to decide which organization you want to support by heading to their product page. You’ll find a description of current organizations you can support and under each one is a link to apply for the checking account. You’ll need to fill out an application with your personal details such as your name, address, government-issued ID and Social Security number. Afterwards, you’ll need to fund your account.

SEE DETAILS Secured

on Amalgamated Bank’s secure website

Member FDIC

Convenience Checking+

Minimal interest, but you can waive the monthly maintenance fee.

APY

Minimum Balance Amount

0.01%

none

0.05%

$500

0.05%

$1,000

  • Minimum opening deposit: $0
  • Monthly account maintenance fee: $10 (this can be waived)
  • ATM fee: Free at Amalgamated Bank and Allpoint ATMs, $1.50 for out of network ATMs
  • ATM fee refund: Up to two domestic transactions per month
  • Overdraft fee: $34

This account is a step up from the standard Convenience Checking account, but it doesn’t offer as high of a rate as the Online Checking account. You do get access to mobile banking, an enhanced Mastercard debit card – offering consumer protections for qualified purchases such as extended warranty and price guarantee.

There’s also the Donate the Change program, where Amalgamated Bank will donate $0.10 to a nonprofit organization every time you make a $10 debit card purchase. Right now, that organization is The Solutions Project, a nonprofit that helps to change the landscape of clean energy sources by bringing leaders together to help fund projects.

Although there is a monthly maintenance fee, you can get that waived if you make a recurring qualifying direct deposit each month. You also get one overdraft charge waived per year.

How to get the Convenience Checking+ account

This account can only be opened in person at a branch. Click here to find one closest to you.

SEE DETAILS Secured

on Amalgamated Bank’s secure website

Member FDIC

Convenience Checking

This account doesn’t earn any interest and can only be opened at a branch.
  • Minimum opening deposit: $0
  • Monthly account maintenance fee: $5 (this can be waived)
  • ATM fee: Free at Amalgamated Bank and Allpoint ATMs, $1.50 for out of network ATMs
  • ATM fee refund: Up to two domestic transactions per month
  • Overdraft fee: $34

This checking account is best for those who want to use their checking account for frequent transactions and are willing to forego earning interest for the convenience.

There are some perks to the account. For example, you can waive the monthly maintenance fee if you make a qualifying direct deposit each month, such as your salary or Social Security benefits. Also, every 12 months you’ll get one overdraft fee waived. And, mobile banking is free.

You will get the enhanced Mastercard debit card which comes with protections such as extended warranty and price guarantee for qualified purchases. It also gives you the opportunity to participate in Amalgamated Bank’s Donate the Change program.

How to get the Convenience Checking account

You can only open this account in person. Click here to find a branch closest to you.

SEE DETAILS Secured

on Amalgamated Bank’s secure website

Member FDIC

Affordable Checking

A step up from the Access Checking account.
  • Minimum opening deposit: None
  • Monthly account maintenance fee: $0
  • ATM fee: Free at Amalgamated Bank and Allpoint ATMs, $1.50 for out-of-network ATMs
  • ATM fee refund: None
  • Overdraft fee: $34

This checking account is a small step up from the Access Checking account in that you do get check writing capabilities and overdraft protection. Account holders also get a Mastercard debit card and free mobile banking.

Because you don’t earn any interest, you’re better off with one of the other account options, such as Online Checking which doesn’t require a monthly maintenance fee either.

How to get Affordable Checking account

You can only open an Affordable Checking in person. You can head over to their locations page to find a branch near you.

SEE DETAILS Secured

on Amalgamated Bank’s secure website

Member FDIC

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How Amalgamated Bank’s checking accounts compare

As far as rates go, most of their products are on par with some of the best offerings out there. Like many of its competitors, Amalgamated Bank requires no opening minimum balance or monthly maintenance fees. These checking accounts are also unique in that it offers you a chance to give back to a nonprofit organization.

However, for those seeking the highest APYs on the market, you’ll want to look at our list of the current best online checking accounts.

Amalgamated Bank’s savings account options

Online Savings

A simple online savings account with no monthly maintenance fees.

APY

Minimum Balance Amount

0.60%

none

  • Minimum opening deposit: $0
  • Minimum balance to earn APY: $0
  • Monthly account maintenance fee: $0
  • ATM fee: N/A
  • ATM fee refund: N/A
  • Overdraft fee: None

This is a great account for those who want a free savings account earning a competitive rate. However, that rate is promotional and may change after the first 12 months. Afterwards, the bank may change the APY at their discretion.

Account holders get free online and mobile banking, including mobile check deposit and Touch ID login if your phone’s compatible. While there’s no ATM access, you can link this account to a checking account to transfer money.

Federal Reserve Regulation D mandates that savings accounts are limited to six withdrawals a month. Amalgamated Bank charges an excessive withdrawal fee of $5 per withdrawal if you make more than six.

How to get an Online Savings account

Head over to Amalgamated Bank’s website and fill out an online application form, which should take around 10 minutes. The form requires you to fill in personal details such as your name, employment information, Social Security number and state-issued ID. You’ll then be asked to fund your account.

SEE DETAILS Secured

on Amalgamated Bank’s secure website

Member FDIC

Give-Back Savings

A simple online savings account with no monthly maintenance fees.

APY

Minimum Balance Amount

0.30%

none

  • Minimum opening deposit: $0
  • Minimum balance to earn APY: $0
  • Monthly account maintenance fee: $0
  • ATM fee: None for Allpoint and Amalgamated Bank ATMs. $1.50 for out-of-network ATMs
  • ATM fee refund: None
  • Overdraft fee: None

Just like the Give-Back checking account, this savings account lets you choose from a list of participating organizations and Amalgamated Bank will donate the equivalent of half of the interest you earn on your behalf.

Account holders also get an ATM card for cash withdrawals, up to a maximum of $500 per day. Because this is a savings account, you’re limited to six non-ATM withdrawals per month as mandated by Federal Reserve Regulation D. If you exceed that limit, you’ll be charged an excessive withdrawal fee of $5 per transaction.

How to get the Give-Back Savings account

First decide which organization you want to support on their product page and click on the corresponding link to apply for a account under each organization. You’ll be taken to an online application form where you can fill in details, including your name, address, employment information, Social Security number and government-issued ID. You’ll then be asked to fund your account.

SEE DETAILS Secured

on Amalgamated Bank’s secure website

Member FDIC

Convenience Savings

You’ll get a better deal with the online savings account options.

APY

Minimum Balance Amount

0.01%

None

0.05%

$100

  • Minimum opening deposit: None
  • Minimum balance to earn APY: None
  • Monthly account maintenance fee: $0
  • ATM fee: N/A
  • ATM fee refund: N/A
  • Overdraft fee: N/A

This is pretty much a bare bones savings account and you’re probably better off with Amalgamated Bank’s Online Savings account option if you’re looking for better rates. There’s no ATM access and you’re limited by federal regulation D to six withdrawals a month. If you make more than that in a month, you’ll be charged $5 for each.

How to get the Convenience Savings account

You can only open this account in person. You check their locations page or call customer service to find a branch near you.

SEE DETAILS Secured

on Amalgamated Bank’s secure website

Member FDIC

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How Amalgamated Bank’s savings accounts compare

Both savings accounts are pretty much on par with what’s currently being offered out there. Although some of their competitors offer slightly higher rates, Amalgamated Bank requires a comparatively low minimum opening deposit. Plus, these accounts offer you the opportunity to donate to worthy causes, whereas other banks may not.

You can always check our list of the current best rates to nab the best deal on a savings account.

Amalgamated Bank’s CD rates

Fixed rate CDs

Earn a guaranteed rate of return though with less than stellar rates.

Term

APY

3 months

0.50%

6 months

0.10%

7 months

1.05%

12 months

0.30%

24 months

0.35%

36 months

0.40%

60 months

0.45%

  • Minimum opening deposit: $500
  • Minimum balance amount to earn APY: $500
  • Early withdrawal penalty: Depends on length of term:
    • Between 3 to 12 months – 90 days interest
    • Between 13 and 30 months- 180 days interest
    • 31 months or more – 270 days interest

This fixed rate CD is best for those who don’t have a lot of money to invest and want a guaranteed rate of return on their cash. Interest is compounded differently depending on the length of your term. If you have an account that matures in a year or less, there isn’t compounding and interest will be credited upon maturity. Accounts with terms of more than a year will have interest compounded yearly and credited at maturity. You can choose to have interest credited to another Amalgamated Bank account or kept in the CD.

You’ll receive a notice before your CD is set to mature. When it does, you’ll have a 10-day grace period in which you can close the account, make additional deposits or renew it for another term. Otherwise, your CD will automatically be renewed.

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Jumbo CD

This CD offers shorter term options for a big balance, but at the cost of low rates.

Term

APY

14 days

0.25%

30 days

0.25%

60 days

0.25%

3 months

0.50%

120 days

0.60%

150 days

0.60%

6 months

0.60%

210 days

0.60%

270 days

0.60%

12 months

0.85%

  • Minimum opening deposit: $250,000
  • Minimum balance amount to earn APY: $250,000
  • Early withdrawal penalty: Depends on length of term:
    • Less than 61 days – all interest
    • 3 to 12 months – 90 days interest
    • 13 to 30 months – 180 days interest
    • Over 30 months – 270 days interest

This CD is best for those who have a large amount of money and want a guaranteed rate of return on it in a short-term investment vehicle. However, there are better rates elsewhere. In fact, even with the bank’s longer term the fixed rate CD is the better deal.

Interest earned isn’t compounded and is credited to your account when it matures. The account won’t be automatically be renewed, so you can either close the account, make withdrawals or make additional deposits.

How to get Amalgamated Bank’s CDs

You can only open a CD account at a branch. Click on this link or call customer service to find a location closest to you.

SEE DETAILS Secured

on Amalgamated Bank’s secure website

Member FDIC

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How Amalgamated Bank’s CD rates compare

Unfortunately, these rates fall short in comparison to what other banks and credit unions are offering. Amalgamated Bank’s competitors also offer low minimum opening deposits and different account terms. With the jumbo CDs, these rates are pretty low, though they do offer short term options. If you’re after the best APYs – no matter how much you intend on depositing – you’re better off looking at our list of the current best CD rates.

Amalgamated Bank’s money market account options

Money Market account

A simple money market account that doesn’t offer anything out of the ordinary.

APY

Minimum Balance Amount

0.05%

none

0.10%

$25,000

0.15%

$50,000

0.15%

$100,000

  • Minimum opening deposit: $0
  • Minimum balance to earn APY: $0
  • Monthly account maintenance fee: $0
  • ATM fee: $0 if at an in-network or Allpoint ATM. $1.50 per transaction for out-of-network ATMs
  • ATM fee refund: None
  • Overdraft fee: None

While the rates for the money market account aren’t anything to write home about, you do get ATM access, even if that is limited to a maximum of $500 in cash withdrawals. If having ATM access is important, this account could be a great option. Otherwise, Amalgamated Bank’s savings accounts are a better option as they have higher rates.

You’re limited to six withdrawals a month as per Federal Reserve Regulation D. If you make more than that, you’ll be charged $5 per withdrawal.

How to get Amalgamated Bank’s money market account

You can only open a money market account at a local branch. Click on this link to find a location closest to you.

SEE DETAILS Secured

on Amalgamated Bank’s secure website

Member FDIC

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How Amalgamated Bank’s money market account compares

The money market account rates here fall way short in comparison to other online banks and credit unions. Others offer rates almost five times that of Amalgamated Bank’s and have low minimum opening deposit amounts. Some even offer ATM cards with higher withdrawal limits than this bank does.

In short, you’re better off opening an account somewhere else. You can do some comparison shopping using our list of the current best money market rates.

Amalgamated Bank IRA options

IRA CD rates

Get a fixed rate of return with this conservative investment option.

Term

APY

3 months

0.10%

6 months

0.15%

7 months

1.05%

12 months

0.30%

18 months

1.11%

24 months

0.35%

36 months

0.40%

  • Minimum opening deposit: $500
  • Minimum balance amount to earn APY: $500
  • Early withdrawal penalty: Depends on term of CD:
    • 3 to 12 months – 90 days interest
    • 13 to 30 months – 180 days interest
    • 31 months or more – 270 days interest

This account is best for those looking for a conservative retirement account option. Any interest you earn is compounded and credited monthly. Account holders can choose to keep interest in the CD or deposited into another Amalgamated Bank account when it matures or as it’s credited to your account.

You’ll get a notice when your CD is set to mature. Upon maturity, you’ll get a 10-day grace period in which you can withdraw your funds, renew for another term or make additional deposit or allow it to be automatically renewed by doing nothing.

Because this is an IRA account, you may have to pay taxes and penalties imposed by the IRS, depending on your age. However, you won’t be penalized by Amalgamated Bank if you’re over 70 ½ and make an early withdrawal, but only if you’re depositing the funds into another Amalgamated Bank account.

How to get Amalgamated Bank’s IRA CDs

You can only open an IRA CD account at a local branch. Click on this link to find a location closest to you.

SEE DETAILS Secured

on Amalgamated Bank’s secure website

Member FDIC

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How Amalgamated Bank’s IRA CD rates compare

The promotional rates as well as the 36-month IRA CD are slightly lower than the other offerings out there, but the other terms fall way short when looking at our list of the top IRA CD rates. However, other competitors require higher minimum opening deposits so you’ll need to do some comparison shopping to see if you’re able to meet those amounts. If you can, then you’re better off looking elsewhere.

IRA savings account

A simple IRA savings account that lets you set aside money for retirement.

APY

Minimum Balance Amount

0.10%

$10

  • Minimum opening deposit: $10
  • Minimum balance to earn APY: $10
  • Monthly account maintenance fee: None
  • ATM fee: N/A
  • ATM fee refund: N/A
  • Overdraft fee: N/A

This IRA savings account is best for those seeking a retirement account that won’t tie their funds to a time deposit account like the IRA CDs. The minimum balance amount is pretty low, but do be aware that the IRS limits how much you can deposit into the account each year.

Because this is a savings account, you may be limited to six withdrawals a month as mandated by Federal Reserve Regulation D. Also, you may be subject to tax penalties by the IRS if you’re under the age of 59 ½.

How to get Amalgamated Bank’s IRA savings account

You can only open an IRA CD account at a local branch. Click on this link to find a location closest to you.

SEE DETAILS Secured

on Amalgamated Bank’s secure website

Member FDIC

Overall review of Amalgamated Bank’s banking products

Overall, Amalgamated Bank’s products aren’t all that stellar. Their CD rates are significantly less than other online competitors, but their promotional accounts are ok since they’re only slightly lower than the highest rates out there. Their IRA accounts aren’t that great either, and there are much better options elsewhere.

Where the bank shines is their savings accounts, as the rates are fairly competitive compared to others. There’s no monthly maintenance fees, minimum balance amounts and you can get ATM access with the Give-Back account. The checking account is also unique in that it offers you the opportunity to contribute to charitable causes without needing to donate your own funds.

Another shortcoming with Amalgamated Bank’s products is that not all of its products can be opened online. Unless you live near a branch, you’re pretty much out of luck when it comes to the CD, IRA and money market accounts.

If you want a great rate for a savings account and a basic checking account that offers ATM refunds, Amalgamated Bank has you covered. Otherwise, it’s probably a good idea to see what others have to offer.

Advertiser Disclosure: The products that appear on this site may be from companies from which MagnifyMoney receives compensation. This compensation may impact how and where products appear on this site (including, for example, the order in which they appear). MagnifyMoney does not include all financial institutions or all products offered available in the marketplace.

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Auto Loan, Reviews

LightStream Auto Loan Review

Editorial Note: The content of this article is based on the author’s opinions and recommendations alone. It has not been previewed, commissioned or otherwise endorsed by any of our network partners.

Written By

Reviewed By

If you’re in the market for a quick, affordable and hassle-free way to finance your next car, a LightStream auto loan should definitely be on your radar. It’s particularly well-suited for deal-seekers with good credit who don’t mind working with an online company when it comes to financing their cars. If you’d rather work with a local company that can offer in-person support, however, you might want to skip this lender.

How LightStream auto loans work

LightStream offers a wide range of options for financing your next ride, including:

  • Purchase of a new or used car, either from a dealer or an individual
  • Auto loan refinance (except it does not refinance its own loans)
  • Auto lease buyouts
  • Loans for motorcycles, as well as boats and RVs
  • Classic car loans

Auto loans at a glance:

  • Starting APR range: 3.49%–9.49%
  • Fees: None
  • Loan amounts: $5,000–$100,000
  • Terms: 24–84 months
  • Credit requirements: Minimum 660 credit score
  • Mileage or vehicle restrictions: None

LightStream offers the same starting rate whether you’re buying a new or used car from a dealer, something you don’t see at other lenders. But keep in mind that the lowest rates go to those with the best credit who opt for the shortest loan terms possible and use autopay to make their car payments.

Satisfaction guarantee

If you see a lower rate elsewhere, LightStream will beat any verified offer with a rate that is .10 percentage points lower. It also promises a $100 guarantee within 30 days if you aren’t satisfied with your loan experience.

How to apply for a LightStream auto loan

The only way you can apply for a LightStream auto loan is through its online form. It is an online lender, after all, so you should be comfortable with handling your business details — including the loan application — online. You’ll need to:

  1. Acknowledge receipt of LightStream’s statement on the use of electronic records.
  2. Agree to receive electronic records.
  3. Agree to use electronic signatures to sign your loan documents.

You’ll also need to have a Visa or Mastercard credit card to apply, which LightStream uses during the verification process.

You will be asked to provide:

  • The purpose, term and amount of desired loan
  • Your name
  • Your address
  • Phone number
  • Social Security number
  • Employment information
  • Annual income
  • Total amount of assets and equity in your home

From there, LightStream may contact you for more details and documentation. If approved, you’ll need to sign your loan documents electronically and provide LightStream with your bank account details. The money will then be deposited into your bank account, which means you’ll need to pass it along to the seller, whether that’s a dealer or private seller. LightStream will not send the money to the seller directly.

It’s important to note that LightStream doesn’t offer any preapproval options, but if you apply and are approved for a loan, you are under no obligation to accept the loan.

How to qualify for the best rates

LightStream requires good credit at a minimum, but looks for excellent credit when giving the best rates. It defines excellent credit as:

  • Five or more years of significant credit history.
  • A credit history with a variety of account types such as major credit cards (for example, Visa, MasterCard, Amex), installment debt (vehicle loans) and mortgage debt if applicable.
  • An excellent payment history with no delinquencies or other problems repaying debt obligations.
  • A proven ability to save as shown by some or all of the following: liquid assets (stocks, bonds, bank deposits, etc.), cash down payments on real estate, retirement savings and little, if any, revolving credit card debt.
  • Stable and sufficient income and assets to easily repay current debt obligations and any new loan with LightStream.

Pros and cons of LightStream auto loans

LightStream offers the convenience of an online lender with the backing of a brick-and-mortar bank as the online arm of Truist, the bank created by the merger of  SunTrust Bank and BB&T. But it’s important to weigh all of your options carefully when choosing an auto loan. It’s one of the biggest purchases you’ll make, after all.

Pros

  • Wide variety of loans: New, used, refinance and lease buyouts loans are available on a wide range of vehicles. Unlike other lenders, LightStream doesn’t place restrictions on your vehicle’s age, make, model or mileage.
  • Decent rates: We’ve seen lower starting rates at credit unions, but you’ll have to meet membership requirements. LightStream has no membership requirements and provides the same starting rates for new and used vehicles as well as refinance loans.
  • No down payment required: LightStream finances up to 100% of the car’s cost. Of course, it’s always best to put down as much as you can afford on an auto loan. This will help you save money over the life of your loan and avoid becoming underwater on that loan.
  • Quick funding: If you complete the application process and are approved by 2:30 p.m. EST, you could receive funds the same day.
  • Good reviews: LightStream auto loan reviews are generally positive.

Cons

  • Good credit required: To qualify for a LightStream auto loan you’ll need a credit score of at least 660 or better.
  • No preapproval process: Unlike many lenders, you’ll have to complete a full application in order to see your rates and terms. Still, the process is fast, and if you complete your rate shopping within a certain time period, multiple applications should not impact your credit any more than a single application.
  • No face-to-face service: If you’re the type of person who likes to seal the deal with a handshake after signing the documents, you’ll want to stick with some place local.

LightStream vs. Capital One

If you’d like a bit more of a guided approach to the car-buying process,  Capital One’s Auto Navigator loan options might be better for you. Rather than sending you cash directly that you can use on whatever car you want to buy, Capital One’s Auto Navigator service lets you first get prequalified for financing, and then shows you which dealers in your area may offer based on the type of car you want to buy and the financing you can afford.

If any of the offerings pique your interest, you can then finish the application and buy the car. It’s still a good idea to compare the offer with other new and used car loan rates.

LightStream vs. Carvana

Carvana works similarly to Capital One Auto Navigator in that you can prequalify for financing and browse real cars in your area that you may then be able to buy. It’s important to remember that Carvana only sells used cars and its financing is only available on Carvana cars. But it is possible to finance here with poor credit — Carvana requires borrowers to be 18 years old, have no active bankruptcies on their credit report and earn at least $4,000 per year.

Advertiser Disclosure: The products that appear on this site may be from companies from which MagnifyMoney receives compensation. This compensation may impact how and where products appear on this site (including, for example, the order in which they appear). MagnifyMoney does not include all financial institutions or all products offered available in the marketplace.

Advertiser Disclosure

Credit Cards, Reviews

CreditStacks Mastercard Review

Editorial Note: The content of this article is based on the author’s opinions and recommendations alone. It has not been previewed, commissioned or otherwise endorsed by any credit card issuer. This site may be compensated through a credit card issuer partnership.

Written By

The CreditStacks Mastercard offers a unique opportunity for individuals with little or no U.S. credit history – such as recent college graduates or professionals relocating to the U.S. for employment – to be approved for a credit card.

That’s because instead of requiring a Social Security number (SSN) or individual taxpayer identification number (ITIN) as most traditional credit cards do, the CreditStacks Mastercard allows applicants to apply using a valid passport or U.S. government-issued ID, a U.S. visa or a permanent resident “green” card (if applicable), as well as proof of income. The CreditStacks Mastercard also allows you to apply up to 60 days prior to starting your new job in the U.S.

We break down the pros and cons of the CreditStacks Mastercard, and show how it compares to the Capital One® Secured Mastercard®, which is also designed to help individuals establish or rebuild credit.

CreditStacks Mastercard pros

No credit history required. With the CreditStacks Mastercard, you can apply without a Social Security number and with little or no U.S. credit history. Once you obtain your Social Security number, you must provide it within 60 days of account opening. At that point, CreditStacks will begin reporting your credit activity to the Equifax and TransUnion credit bureaus.

Note, if you have been living in the U.S. for more than one year, you will be required to provide a Social Security number when applying for the card. A credit check may also be performed.

Decent credit limit. The CreditStacks Mastercard offers a credit line of up to $5,000 – which is a generous amount for an unsecured credit card that doesn’t require credit history.

Your credit limit will be determined by the proprietary underwriting procedures of CreditStacks, which will consider your current employment situation and additional factors, instead of your credit score.

No annual fee. The CreditStacks Mastercard comes with a $0 annual fee.

Additional CreditStacks Mastercard benefits:

  • Mastercard ID Theft Protection(™). Access free identity theft resolution services, as well as Mastercard ID Theft Alerts(™).
  • Extended warranty. Receive an extended warranty of up to one year past a manufacturer’s warranty of 12 months or less.
  • Purchase protection. If you are dissatisfied with a purchase, you may be eligible to receive a full refund for up to 60 days from the date of purchase.
  • Price protection. Get reimbursed for the difference if you find a lower price for an eligible new item within 60 days of purchase using your CreditStacks Mastercard.
  • Purchase assurance. Cardholders receive coverage if an item is lost, damaged or stolen within 90 days of purchase.
  • Travel protections. The CreditStacks Mastercard offers a MasterRental(R) collision damage waiver, lost or damaged luggage insurance, travel accident insurance, baggage delay insurance and trip cancellation and trip interruption insurance. Plus, receive access to exclusive experiences and offers through Priceless Cities and special travel offers through Mastercard’s online booking tool.
  • Cellphone insurance. If you use your CreditStacks Mastercard to pay your monthly cellphone bill, you can receive coverage against theft or damage of up to $600 per claim and up to $1,000 per 12-month period.

CreditStacks Mastercard cons

No rewards program. The CreditStacks Mastercard does not offer a sign-up bonus or rewards on the purchases you make using the credit card. That said, when trying to build or rebuild credit, it’s best to focus on paying your bill on time and in full (when possible) each month, rather than racking up rewards.

No intro APR on purchases. The CreditStacks Mastercard does not offer a 0% intro APR on purchases – meaning, if you don’t pay your balance in full each month, you will be subject to interest charges at a rate of 15.49% Variable APR.

That said, the card’s ongoing APR for purchases is reasonable – considering that some cards designed for individuals with little or no credit come with APRs upwards of 26.99% (variable).

Compare it to the Capital One® Secured Mastercard®

Similar to the CreditStacks Mastercard, the Capital One® Secured Mastercard® is designed for individuals with little or no credit. However, because it is a secured credit card, the Capital One® Secured Mastercard® requires a refundable security deposit of $49, $99 or $200, for an initial credit line of $200.

If you deposit more money before your account opens, you may be eligible for a higher credit line, up to $1,000. Additionally, you can be given access to a higher credit line after demonstrating responsible card usage by making your first five monthly payments on time.

While the Capital One® Secured Mastercard® does not require U.S. citizenship to apply, it does require a valid SSN or ITIN, as well as a residential address in the U.S. or a U.S. military location.

See how the cards compare side-by-side in the table below.

CreditStacks Mastercard vs. Capital One® Secured Mastercard®

 CreditStacks MastercardCapital One® Secured Mastercard®
Annual fee$0$0
Rewards rateN/AN/A
Credit lineUp to $5,000$200-$1,000
Deposit requiredNone$49, $99 or $200
Regular purchase APR15.49% Variable26.99% (Variable)

The Capital One® Secured Mastercard® also comes with a number of benefits, including auto rental collision damage waiver, travel accident insurance, extended warranty and 24-hour travel assistance services. As a Capital One member, you will also have access to virtual card numbers and account alerts from Eno, as well as access to your credit score and fraud monitoring through CreditWise.

But if you plan to carry a balance on your card, you’ll be better off with the CreditStacks Mastercard, since the Capital One® Secured Mastercard® comes with a substantially higher APR of 26.99% (Variable).

Read our: Capital One Secured Mastercard review

Which credit card is best for me?

If you haven’t yet established credit in the U.S., the CreditStacks Mastercard could be a good fit. In addition to not requiring a Social Security number for approval, the card helps build your credit by reporting to two major credit bureaus.

But if you’re in the market for a secured credit card and already have a SSN or ITIN, the Capital One® Secured Mastercard® is a good alternative. While the card offers a much lower credit line than the CreditStacks Mastercard, it does offer a variety of useful benefits that aren’t common for a secured credit card.

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