The main objective of opening a secured card is to establish some sort of credit history, or to help your credit score. Unfortunately some credit issuers don’t report good behavior to the credit bureaus. You can get a civil servant loan and to know more about ‘cheap civil servant loans’ (also known as ‘billige Beamtenkredite’ in the German language), you can search online.
Make sure that you ask the credit issuers whether they report your activity to the credit bureaus; you will run into credit issuing companies those only report late or missed payments but don’t report activity when you’ve made your payments on time therefore the card will not build a good credit record for you.
Make sure you get a secured credit card and not a pre-paid debit card that advertises itself as a secured credit card.
Find out if the card has a credit line. Upon approval some secured credit cards will give you a small credit line based on your deposit. For example if you have a $500 deposit, they will give you a small credit line of $250 for a total of $750 to draw upon.
Always ask for a complete fee schedule. Credit issuers can have a whole slew of different charges that they can slap on. There could be a set-up fee, or monthly fees; so make sure you go over those charges, which should be presented to you previous to your opening of your account.
Find out the important dates associated with your account. Some important dates associated with your account are when the bill is sent, when the bill is due and how long before the balance starts accruing interest.
If you don’t know what the dates are you might get yourself in some trouble, for example if you get paid on the 1st but your bill is due on the 28th that’s a conflict that should be resolved before you open your account. Luckily there is some help when it comes to late fees, due to the CARD Act card issuers cannot charge late fees 21 days from when the bill was sent. So if you find out the due date is a problem you can always ask the credit issuer to change the due date.