Current Launches a Secured Charge Card: Build Card
A popular neobank has added a new credit-building feature to its platform.
About the Build Card.
Recently, Current announced the launch of the Build Card. With this option, customers will be able to build personal credit while avoiding taking on debt. The secured product — which Current’s terms bill as a “secured charge card” — allows users to spend using the Build Card and have their balance paid off each month. There are no monthly fees with the card.
When customers use their card, Current will move money from their Spend account to Reserve Funds (meaning that users will simply need to add money to their Current account rather than specifically depositing it into Reserves). Then, cardholders can utilize Reserve Funds to either pay their balance manually or can opt into AutoPay. Current will then report payments to credit bureaus, helping users to establish credit history.
To apply, current Current users may need to re-confirm their information as well as answer some additional questions regarding citizenship and employment. However, no credit check is required to apply. Since Current is not a bank, the Build Card is issued by Cross River Bank.
Current is a FinTech that offers a mobile-first experience to users. In fact, according to a 2021 eMarketer report, Current was the second largest neobank in the United States behind only Chime. As with similar options, the platform includes such features as the ability to receive payroll funds up to two days early, access fee-free ATMs, and more. Additionally, using their Savings Pod feature, users can earn up to 4% APY on funds (up to a total $6,000). However, earning this 4% APY now requires that customers have at least $200 in direct deposits per month.
For a neobank like Current that’s aimed at young adults, this new Build Card feels like a perfect addition. While I haven’t tried it for myself, the way it’s explained makes it one of the most accessible secured products I’ve encountered — although there are some similar options that exist. Of course, rating it in terms of its efficiency in building credit is difficult given a lack of data but, assuming they’re equal, I see secured credit options, such as the Build Card, posing a major threat to other clever but somewhat pricey products such as credit-builder loans.
Overall, there continue to be a number of things to like about Current (even if their Savings Pod feature isn’t as attractive as it once was). Thus, the arrival of the Build Card only makes it a more enticing option for those looking for a digital banking experience as well as the ability to build credit.