Our Credit Strong Review is here to show you that there are companies out there that want to help finance your life and get your credit score up.
Using their services could help you improve your financial situation and put you on the road to financial freedom.
Credit Strong reports to all three major credit bureaus, so you’re building a good credit history and increasing your credit score.
Sound like something that might help you out this year? Keep reading our Credit Strong review to see how their program works!
Overview: Credit Strong Review
Who is Credit Strong?
Founded by Austin Capital Bank in 2019, Credit Strong is a secured-lending Fintech business.
Austin Capital Bank is an accredited bank, and its funds are insured by the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC) for up to $250,000 of deposit protection per account.
Its mission is to give people with bad or no credit the opportunity for financial success through innovative lending solutions like a Credit Builder Loan.
Credit Strong helps you build a positive payment history by reporting successful transactions to the three credit bureaus, Equifax, Experian, and TransUnion.
What Does Credit Strong Do?
- Helps consumers who have no credit or have bad credit
- Offers reasonable annual percentage rates (APR)
- Several plans to choose from
- Helps build a savings account
- NOT an upfront loan or traditional installment loan
Credit Strong Review
Provides Non-Traditional Lending
Credit Strong is not a traditional lending service because it doesn’t give you any money upfront. Instead, it works like a reverse installment loan.
You make monthly payments toward principal and interest on the money you need and then receive the loan proceeds at the end after you’ve paid off the balance.
This differs from a traditional loan, where you receive the money upfront and then make payments over time.
This demonstrates your ability to pay monthly payments, just like you would for traditional lending.
Improves Credit Score
Credit Strong is designed to help you build credit so that you can access traditional lending in the future. To do this, it reports your payment history to the major credit reporting agency.
A CreditStrong account is basically a combination of a secured loan and a savings account.
Your payments are split between interest (how CreditStrong makes money and funds their operations) and principal (which is like making payments to yourself, getting close to unlocking your funds).
Since those payments are reported to all three major credit bureaus, each payment builds credit history and credit score.
As long as you make your payments on time and in full, Credit Strong claims you can build a good credit score that can help you access loans with better terms in the future.
Keep in mind, though, that just like any other credit products, late payments get reported too and will hurt your score, so it’s important to make your payments on time and in full.
Build Revolving Credit
Credit Strong is now offering a new product named Revolv. With Revolv, you can build up your revolving credit without paying interest. Plus, there’s no need for a credit card.
When you open your Revolv account, they don’t perform a credit check. It will open a $500 revolving line of credit and savings account at Austin Capital Bank.
Here’s how it works: They set aside money monthly from your line of credit and place it into a savings account. Then the customer makes a payment that covers the advance (the monthly savings commitment).
Need to skip a month? No problem! Set the payment to a $0 payment, and no payment will be due, and the account will stay open.
Revolv immediately helps improve your utilization since it adds to your total available credit, and CreditStrong will help recommend a saving amount to optimize the utilization of your Revolv line.
Fees Charged: $99 annual membership fee, automatically renewed each year.
Credit Increase: The account starts as a $500 account, but the limit can be increased to $1,000 after three consecutive payments are made. One thing, though, if you miss a payment within the three consecutive monthly payments, the process will start all over.
Early cancelation: The account can be canceled at any time with no fees or penalties charged. To help your revolving credit utilization, you can change the savings commitment to $0. While you can close the account at any time, closed accounts will be reported to the credit bureaus, which decreases your total available credit – so it makes sense to leave the account open for at least the full year once you open it. As long as you keep paying the annual membership fee, your line stays open and helps your utilization, even if you save $0 each month.
Credit Strong Features
The overall cost of a Credit Strong credit-builder loan is determined by the account you select. Each account has its own set of expenses and interest rates.
Each Instal loan has a one-time administration fee charged when your application is approved and your locked savings account has been set up.
The admin fee ranges from $15 – $25 and depends on the size of your loan.
There’s also an interest rate that is charged to your loan. It varies by the loan type and ranges from 5.907% for the Magnum 5000 account to 15.73% for the Build & Save 1100 for 36 months.
With Revolv, there’s an annual subscription fee, but the advances from your revolving line are 0% interest rate, and there are no other fees.
Additional fees and interest may be charged if you miss a monthly payment, just like with traditional lending. A late fee may be charged if your payment is 15 days or more late.
Credit Strong Pricing Plans
Credit Strong offers two different installment products- Instal and Magnum.
Each product has different pricing, including a one time non-refundable administrative fee and APR
Instal has five different loan offers- 2 in the Build loans and 3 in the Build and Save loans:
- Build 1000- Admin fee: $15.00; 13.5% APR; monthly payment = $15
- Build 2500- Admin fee: $15.00; 7.75% APR; monthly payment = $30
- Build and Save 1000- Admin fee: $15.00; 15.51% APR; monthly payment = $48
- Build and Save 1100- Admin fee: $15.00; 15.73% APR; monthly payment = $38
- Build and Save 2000- Admin fee: $15.00; 14.73% APR; monthly payment = $96
Magnum has two packages:
- Magnum 5000- Admin fee: $25.00; 5.907% APR; monthly payment = $55
- Magnum 10000- Admin fee: $25.00; 5.851% APR; monthly payment = $110
Credit Strong offers different loan terms depending on the product you choose and the package you select.
The loan terms for Instal are:
- Build 1000- 120 months (10 years) for a $1,000 loan
- Build 2500- 120 months (10 years) for a $2,500 loan
- Build and Save 1000- 24 months (2 years) for a $1,000 loan
- Build and Save 1100- 36 months (3 years) for a $1,100 loan
- Build and Save 2000- 24 months (2 years) for a $2,000 loan
The loan terms for Magnum are:
- Magnum 5000- 120 months (10 years) for a $5,000 loan
- Magnum 10,000- 120 months (10 years) for a $10,000 loan
Since Revolv is a revolving line, there is no set term. Your revolving line of credit will stay open and help your utilization as long as you keep paying your annual subscription fee.
Credit Strong Eligibility
Credit Strong loans are designed to be easily accessible to customers with no credit or bad credit so they can build a stronger credit history.
This means the eligibility requirements needed to open an account are lower than a traditional loan.
They don’t check your credit score, but there are a few requirements that you must meet to qualify for a Credit Strong loan:
- You must be at least 18 years old and a permanent U.S. resident with a physical U.S. residence (address)
- Have a valid social security number (SSN) or individual taxpayer identification number (ITIN)
- Have a valid bank account, debit card, or prepaid card in good standing
- Have a mobile phone number or a Google Voice account
- Have an email address
Starting Your Account
It is easy to start your Credit Strong account. We’ve broken it down for you in three easy steps:
1. Click The Link
All you have to do to sign up with Credit Strong is click on the link.
Once you’re on the main page, you’ll click “Start Building.”
2. Get Building: Enter Your Details
On the “Start Building” page, you’ll be asked for your First and Last Name and email address.
After you go to the next page, you’ll enter your Date of Birth, Mobile Phone number, Social Security number, and Home Address.
3. Create Your Login
Once your information is in, you need to create an account.
When you are creating your Credit Strong login, be sure to create a unique password to help keep your account secure.
The minimum requirements for a Credit Strong password are:
- 8 characters
- Upper and lower case letters
- One number
- One symbol (e.g. # @ $)
Pros & Cons
- Choose to build installment (Intal or Magnum) or revolving credit (Revolv)
- Doesn’t perform a credit check
- Can cancel any time
- Reports to all three credit bureaus
- Payments are relatively low
- Can make payments to your Credit Strong accounts from your checking account or debit card
- Considered a loan, but you don’t get the money until the loan is paid off
- Late payments are reported to credit bureaus
- No mobile app
- Fees and interest over the life of the loan are higher
- Isn’t accredited with the Better Business Bureau, but it does have a profile
Credit Strong Alternatives
Credit Strong is a great company that provides consumers with various credit improvement options.
However, there are a few other companies out there that provide credit builder loans that you may also want to consider.
Some require a credit check, and some don’t, but some loans are available upfront if that’s also what you’re looking for.
Here are some of the top credit strong alternatives:
With Self, you choose the loan that fits your budget, and the terms you can afford. As long as you make your repayments on time each month, you’ll be well on your way to building a strong credit history with Self.
They differ from Credit Strong in a couple of ways. Self does a credit check known as a “soft pull.” A “soft pull” shouldn’t raise your credit score when they’re checking into you for a loan, whereas other traditional loans can affect your score.
They also offer a VISA Self Credit Card that helps you get a credit card to get you started with your credit.
Seed reports your payments to each credit bureau, so you can improve your credit score as you make on-time payments. Their loans are available for $500 and require an annual salary income of at least $10,000.
They offer loans with no interest, fees, or hidden charges because they want you to like their services and try their other products. Like the other credit builder loans, you don’t get access to your money until the loan is paid in full.
Digital Federal Credit Union
Digital Federal Credit Union (DCU) is a full-service credit union that offers credit builder loans to its customers across the United States.
Like other loans, the DCU loans help people improve their credit score and build savings with loans of up to $3,000.
One of the advantages of using the DCU loans is that you will become a credit union member, which will help you establish a banking relationship.
As a member, you will have access to their services, such as other loans, home mortgages, and credit cards.
They charge a monthly membership fee of $19.99 in addition to the monthly payments on the installment loan. Members have access to loans up to $1,000, but they do get access to a portion of the loan immediately.
MoneyLion offers other services such as personal loans, investment accounts, and cash management accounts.
What’s the difference between companies that help improve credit and using a credit repair service?
There are key differences between companies that improve your credit score and credit repair companies.
First, credit repair companies focus on fixing errors on your credit report, while companies like Credit Strong improve your credit score by helping you build a positive credit history.
Second, credit repair companies may try to remove negative credit history from your report, while companies like CreditStrong only do credit building.
Your account aims to improve your credit score through your payment history or improving your utilization, rather than removing anything.
Finally, credit repair companies typically charge for their services, while companies that improve your credit score offer services for an administrative fee and charge APR.
We saw a variety of credit repair companies, and the cost ranged a lot, from $20 -$140 per month!
Ultimately, deciding which type of company to use depends on your individual needs, money mistakes you have made, and goals to reach a better financial future.
How does Credit Strong work?
Credit Strong credit builder accounts are available to people with poor or bad credit, so your score won’t suffer as they don’t perform a credit inquiry.
Once you apply for your Credit Strong loan and are approved, Credit Strong will deposit the funds into a Credit Strong account that locks immediately and becomes your savings account.
Every month, you make a loan payment like a traditional loan, including your principal and interest. The principal goes into the savings account, and the interest goes to Credit Strong.
Once you’ve paid off your loan, the savings account is unlocked, and the amount in the savings account is released along with the interest earned. You can transfer the money or leave it in the account with Credit Strong.
How do Credit Strong accounts appear on credit reports?
The CreditStrong accounts appear on your credit profile as either an installment loan from Austin Capital Bank, the 5* rated community bank that build CreditSTrong or a revolving line of credit, also from Austin Capital Bank.
Do I need a security deposit to use Credit Strong?
Credit Strong doesn’t require any upfront security deposit, which is great if you’re just starting out and don’t have much money.
The small administration fee or annual subscription fee to open the account you choose can also be paid with a debit card or checking account draft!
Can I get money upfront using Credit Strong?
No, there aren’t any upfront funds from Credit Strong. The money is put into a locked savings account that you can access once you pay off the loan.
Does Credit Strong have an app?
Currently, there is no Credit Strong app. All of their services are available on their website.
Can I improve my credit score in other ways?
You can do many things to improve your credit score and stay within your family budget. These include:
- Paying your bills and monthly payments on time
- Keeping your credit card balances low and using your credit card wisely
- Avoiding opening new lines of credit unnecessarily
- Checking your credit report regularly for errors
- Use a debt payoff planner to help you decide which debts to pay first
- Keep an eye on your credit report with a service like Credit Karma
Overall, the Credit Strong Credit Builder Loan or Revolv revolving line of credit is an excellent choice for anyone looking to improve their credit score.
With its no-security-deposit policy and easy online application process, Credit Strong makes it easy to get started on your path to better credit.
And with monthly payments that go into a locked savings account, you can be sure that you will save money instead of spending money while building your credit.
The Credit Strong Credit Builder Loan is probably the best credit builder loan to use to improve your credit score.
You can slowly but surely improve your credit rating by making timely payments, creating a positive payment history that can secure you different loans in the future.
It’s a great way to work on your finances a little at a time and start your journey toward financial freedom!