Bank of America Customized Cash Rewards Secured Card Review
Those new to credit cards or with a poor credit score who want to improve it should consider the Bank of America Customized Cash Rewards Secured credit card. Even with no annual fee, you earn 1%, 2% or 3% cash back in select spending categories.
The Bank of America Customized Cash Rewards Secured card is ideal for individuals who want to earn cash back while building or improving their credit scores. It lets you earn 3% cash back in the category of your choice (gas, online shopping, dining, travel, drug stores or home improvement), 2% cash back at grocery stores and wholesale clubs, and 1% cash back on other purchases. The card doesn’t charge an annual fee, so it’s a great option as long as you can pay an upfront deposit of at least $300.
Card Details to Know Up Front
- Bonus, Fee or FeatureHas or Not
- Has Annual Fee
- Has Balance Transfer Offer
- Has APR Offer
- Cash Back Rewards
- Travel Rewards
Bank of America Customized Cash Rewards Secured Card at a Glance
A secured credit card comes in handy when you want to build or rebuild your credit score. With the Bank of America Customized Cash Rewards Secured credit card, you can increase your credit score while earning cash back on various purchases. To open an account, you need a minimum security deposit of $300. While not exactly cheap, your security deposit is refundable if you qualify to graduate to an unsecured credit card.
- Bank of America Customized Cash Rewards Secured
A great no-annual-fee card for earning high cash back on bonus categories
- None-PoorCredit Needed
- $0Annual Fee
- $300Min. Security Deposit
- 1% - 3% Cash BackRewards Rate
Pros & Cons Explained
Understanding the Bank of America Customized Cash Rewards Secured card’s benefits and drawbacks can ultimately help you determine if it’s the right card for you to build or improve your credit.
- Low/no credit score requirementSince it’s a secured credit card, you can submit your application even if you have no credit history or a poor credit score.
- No annual feeUnlike other secured cards, the Bank of America Customized Cash Rewards Secured card doesn’t come with an annual fee.
- Cash back rateYou can get 3% cash back in the category of your choice: gas, online shopping, dining, travel, drug stores or home furnishings. Additionally, you get 2% back at grocery stores and wholesale clubs, and 1% unlimited cash back on all other purchases. It’s worth noting that the 3% and 2% cash back rates apply to your first $2,500 in combined purchases each quarter.
- Graduate to an unsecured cardBank of America periodically reviews your account and determines if you qualify to graduate to an unsecured card. If so, you receive a refund of your security deposit.
- High minimum depositThe Bank of America Customized Cash Rewards Secured card requires a higher minimum deposit ($300) to open an account than other secured credit cards.
- High APRThere is an APR for purchases and balance transfers of 24.24% variable.
- Balance transfer and foreign transaction feesFor balance transfers, there’s a fee of $10 or 3% of each transaction, whichever is greater. For foreign transactions, the fee is 3% of the U.S. dollar amount of each transaction.
The MoneyGeek team analyzes each card in our database monthly and determines our top picks for popular card categories. Our Bank of America Customized Cash Rewards Secured credit card review did not find it ranks high among secured cards. You may compare the Bank of America Customized Cash Rewards Secured card to the best secured credit cards of 2022 to decide the best option for you.
Other Features Explained
The Bank of America Customized Cash Rewards Secured card boasts other features besides cash back that may benefit its cardholders.
- Card FeatureDescription
- Free FICO score accessYou can access your FICO score for free through your online account or the Bank of America mobile app to monitor your progress in building your credit score with a secured credit card.
- Flexible credit limitYour security deposit helps determine your credit limit. With the Bank of America Customized Cash Rewards Secured card, you can deposit up to $4,900. The issuer also considers your income and ability to repay charges when calculating your credit limit. You won’t be able to get a credit limit higher than the set amount, even if you deposit more money.
- Zero fraud liabilityThe card comes with a $0 liability guarantee that covers fraudulent transactions others make on your account.
Your cash back rewards don’t expire, and you can change your 3% cash back category every month. That means, if you expect to, for example, pay more for gas or online shopping during certain parts of the year, you should select those categories at that time for the 3% cash back. You can adjust the category to your spending habits to earn the most rewards during the year.
Understanding the Fine Print
Before applying for the Bank of America Customized Cash Rewards Secured card, it’s critical to read the fine print thoroughly. That way, you familiarize yourself with the fees and charges that come with the card.
- Card FeatureAmount or Rate
- Annual Fee$0
- Cash Back Rewards
- Rewards Rate1% - 3% Cash Back
- Airline Benefits
You don’t have to pay yearly to have this secured credit card, thanks to its no annual fee.
To open an account, there is the requirement of a security deposit of between $300 and $4,900.
If you carry a balance on the Bank of America Customized Cash Rewards Secured credit card, you pay interest at the rate of 24.24% (variable) on purchases and balance transfers.
Late payments incur a fee of up to $40.
Foreign Transaction Fee
When you use this card outside the United States, you pay a foreign transaction fee of 3% of the transaction amount.
To find the secured credit card best suited for your needs, you need to take a closer look at the fees, APRs, features and disadvantages of various secured cards. If you want to compare the Bank of America Customized Cash Rewards Secured card to a card you already have, check your latest billing statement or visit the issuer’s website or mobile app. Additionally, you can get more information from the credit card agreement database maintained by the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB).
Who Should & Shouldn’t Consider Bank of America Customized Cash Rewards Secured Card?
Other Considerations for Bank of America Customized Cash Rewards Secured Card
If you’re considering the Bank of America Customized Cash Rewards Secured card, it’s vital to examine how it could work for you as your primary card or as an add-on card in your wallet. That’s why our Bank of America Customized Cash Rewards Secured card review outlines how it can work in either situation.
Things to Consider if This Will Be Your First or Only Credit Card
The Bank of America Customized Cash Rewards Secured card is a good option as your first card since you can apply even if you don’t have a credit history. However, you need to keep in mind its high minimum security deposit and high APR. The security deposit amount is only refundable when you are eligible for an unsecured credit card. As for the APR, it’s 24.24%, which is very high. This is not a card you would want to not pay off in full every month.
When using this card, it’s best to budget wisely and make on-time payments, which makes you avoid a late fee of up to $40. Avoiding late payments also boosts your chances of getting approved for an unsecured card, as they can negatively impact your credit rating.
Things to Consider if This Will Be an Additional Card in Your Wallet
As a secondary card, you can use the Bank of America Customized Cash Rewards Secured credit card to increase your credit score and earn cash back rewards. Outside of that, this card might not offer much value. If you can get an unsecured cash back credit card, you’re better off using it, especially for balance transfers and foreign transactions.
MoneyGeek follows a well-defined approach to examining credit cards and companies. Our process involves gathering data from the Consumer Finance Protection Bureau database, standardizing data points for card comparison, estimating average spend profiles, determining the three-year value of the cards and carrying out monthly re-rankings.
How Bank of America Customized Cash Rewards Secured Card Compares to Other Cards
MoneyGeek’s Bank of America Customized Cash Rewards Secured credit card review found it is a great option for those trying to build or improve credit. Still, we compared it to another secured credit card to help you figure out if it’s the right card for your needs.
Quick Comparison of the Bank of America Customized Cash Rewards Secured Card
Bank of America Customized Cash Rewards Secured Card
- Annual fee: $0
- Regular APR: 24.24%
- Cash back rewards: 3% cash back in one chosen category, 2% at grocery stores and warehouse clubs, 1% on all other purchases
- Minimum deposit: $300
- Best for: People with poor or no credit who want to earn cash back
Citi Secured Mastercard
- Annual fee: $0
- Regular APR: 22.49%
- Cash back rewards: None
- Minimum deposit: $200
- Best for: Individuals looking to build credit with limited credit history
Other Helpful Decision-Making Q&As
MoneyGeek answered many frequently asked questions about the Bank of America Customized Cash Rewards Secured card as part of our review that you might find useful before pursuing your application.
Still not sure about this card? Consider these options.
If you’re unsure about getting the Bank of America Customized Cash Rewards Secured card, you can check out other secured credit cards for more options. If you want higher rewards for credit card usage and have good credit, you might be better off with an unsecured rewards card.
Capital One Quicksilver Rewards
American Express Marriott Bonvoy Business Card
Wells Fargo Business Platinum Credit Card
Capital One Quicksilver Student Rewards
American Express Delta SkyMiles Gold Card
Bank of America Premium Rewards Card
Chase Ink Business Preferred
PenFed Power Cash Rewards Visa Signature Card
Mastercard Titanium Card
Disney Premier Visa Card
Chase Ink Business Unlimited
Chase Sapphire Reserve
Learn more about credit cards in general
- Bank of America. "Bank of America® Customized Cash Rewards Secured Credit Card." Accessed April 13, 2022.
- Bank of America. "Terms and Conditions." Accessed April 13, 2022.
- Bank of America. "Credit Card Account Management FAQs." Accessed April 13, 2022.
- J.D. Power. "While Many U.S. Credit Card Issuers Struggle to Meet Evolving Customer Expectations, Some Bright Spots Exist, J.D. Power Finds." Accessed April 13, 2022.
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