How U.S. Immigrants Can Build Credit Fast

When moving to the United States, many people assume that the credit history they’ve built in their home country will travel with them to the U.S. This, however, is false and can lead to several problems upon arrival to the country. In order to establish yourself, rent a home or apartment, or finance a car, you will need to build credit as quickly as possible.

Paying off credit card debt

Getting a U.S. Credit Card

Once you’ve moved to the United States, one of the first things to do to get your credit up and running is to apply for a credit card and make payments on time each month. While it has become a bit easier to get a credit line in the U.S., immigrants still face difficulty when establishing themselves in the country and may not be approved if applying for random cards.

If you’re struggling to find which credit card you should apply for, companies like Nova Credit provide users with plenty of options. Let’s look at some of the choices available for immigrants wanting to establish credit within the country.

American Express Green Card

The American Express Green Card offers individuals reward points and statement credits with eligible purchases around the world. There are no foreign transaction fees to worry about, though you will have to pay an annual fee of less than $200.

This card is a good option for individuals moving to the United States from Canada who wish to build their credit quickly as well as people that enjoy traveling, as travel purchases often receive double or triple reward points.

Apply for an American Express Card with this link. You can earn 60,000 Membership Rewards® points after you use your new Platinum Card to make $5,000 in purchases within the first 3 months of Card Membership.

American Express Platinum Card

Gold Delta SkyMiles Credit Card from American Express

Another excellent option for individuals is the SkyMiles credit card from American Express, which provides users with air miles for every eligible purchase and priority boarding on flights conducted by Delta.

This card is good for people that travel often, such as back and forth between their home country and the United States, and allows you to save money on travel while building your score. The introductory rate for the first year is waived for new users, saving you almost $100 from the very beginning.

Blue Cash Everyday Card from American Express

The Blue Cash card is an option that users can take advantage of 0% APR for 15 months – after this period, the rate varies between 14.49% and 25.49%. Individuals get some great perks, including 3% cash back in the form of reward points that can be redeemed for merchandise, gift cards, or credits on your statement.

Another perk of this credit card is that there is no annual fee, which results in automatic savings and one less payment to worry about.

American Express Cash Magnet Card

Another option for individuals looking for a credit card with no annual fees is the Cash Magnet Card from American Express. Along with no annual fees, users do not have to worry about an APR for a full 15 months and have the ability to split larger purchases into smaller, fixed-fee, monthly payments that make it easy to pay off purchases sooner and reduce your credit utilization at a faster rate. 

Consider a Secured Credit Card

While it can be difficult to get approved for a regular credit card, immigrants may be approved for a secured credit card instead. These lines of credit are based on your initial deposit, so if you put down $400 you will have $400 available on that card – which is why these are referred to as secure credit cards. You will be using your own money to pay for items and build your score, but you must make payments on time in order to reap the benefits.

It can seem like a hassle to build credit in the U.S. at first, but the more you learn about the process the easier it becomes. Start off by establishing some form of a credit line, which can be done using an American Express credit card that fits your current situation. There are dozens of credit card options to choose from, so speak with a professional, get referrals from others, and do your own research to find which card is best for establishing U.S. credit.

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