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Extra Debit Card Review: How to Build Credit with a Debit Card

Advertiser Disclosures

Debit cards typically don’t help build credit, but after reading this Extra Debit Card review, you’ll get a better understanding of how to build credit with a debit card.

It’s clear that building a positive credit history is an essential part of financial stability. But there are some people that want to avoid racking up debt while building credit.

The Extra Debit Card provides one of the few ways to build credit without piling on debt. While most debit cards, even if you’re using them responsibly, won’t help to build credit, the Extra Debit Card is different.

The Extra Debit Card Review

Here’s a quick look at how the Extra Card helps build a positive credit history.

  • The Extra Debit Card makes it simple to start building credit with no credit check.
  • Start by connecting your bank account to your Extra account. Your spending limit is based on your bank balance.
  • Generally, the more purchases you make with Extra the more your Spend Power will increase.
  • When you swipe your Extra Debit Card, your purchase will be covered and after the purchase, Extra will pay itself back from your bank account the next business day.
  • At the end of each month, Extra will total up all of your transactions and report them as payments to two major credit bureaus – Experian and Equifax.
  • Because the Extra Debit Card temporarily extended credit for the purchases, you build a positive credit history showing payments made in full on Experian and Equifax credit reports.

What’s the difference between a credit card and the Extra Debit Card

extra-cardCredit cards allow you to borrow money against your credit card limit. When you swipe, purchases will be added to your bill.

If you don’t pay off your balance within 30 days, you will owe interest on your purchases. Credit cards can help improve your credit score over time, especially if you make frequent purchases and pay off your balance in full each month.

The positive payment history is reported to the major credit bureaus each month along with low credit utilization (meaning you’re not using most of your available credit limit).

The Extra Debit Card is not a credit card but much like paying off a credit card balance in full each month, the paid in full debit card purchases are totaled each month and reported to two major credit bureaus as positive payment history. You don’t have to worry about any interest or hidden fees.

Is the Extra Debit Card like a secured credit card?

As previously stated, the Extra Debit Card is not a credit card at all. But the Extra Card builds credit and earns rewards points just like a credit card. No deposit is required and like a secured credit card, your money is kept in your bank. Secured credit cards require you to make an upfront security deposit to reduce risk to the lender. Your deposit equals your credit limit and is kept in the credit issuer’s bank for as long as you keep the secured card.

Who issues the Extra Debit Card?

Your money is safe with the Extra Debit Card. They partner with Evolve Bank and Trust, which is FDIC insured. Extra is not a bank, they are only linked to your bank account using the Plaid technology.

The Extra Debit Card carries the Mastercard logo and works anywhere Mastercard does (except outside the United States, Extra only works within the US).

Extra Debit Card has rewards

Extra offers 1% rewards points on everyday purchases like rideshares, coffees, and your phone bills. Spend your points on a variety of products from AirPods to meal kits from Blue Apron.

How to qualify for the Extra Debit Card

Practically any adult with a United States bank account can qualify for the Extra Debit Card.

Here is what you’ll need to apply:

  • Social Security Number or Individual Taxpayer Identification Number.
  • Physical address in the United States that they can send your card to. They will not send it to a Post Office box.
  • A bank account that supports the Plaid platform. Plaid makes it easy to securely connect your bank to the apps you want to use. Extra never stores any of your banking information, ever. Plaid is used to securely connect to your bank account (just like Venmo), so your banking information stays your business.
  • There is no credit check required (no impact to your credit score).

The benefit of paying back the card daily is that there is zero percent interest. You can’t carry a balance beyond the one day so you’re never at risk of paying interest.

The Extra Debit Card does not charge interest but there is a fee that depends on the level of service that can be paid monthly or annually for a discounted fee.

Credit Building OnlyCredit Building & Rewards
Monthly Fee $8 per month $12 per month
Yearly Fee (save by paying upfront) $84 per year ($7 per month) $108 per year ($9 per month)

Final Extra Debit Card review

Can a debit card help build credit? The short answer used to be no. That’s because debit cards don’t have a credit line attached to them like a credit card.

However, with the Extra Debit Card, you use the money already in your bank account to make transactions on the Extra Debit Card that then report to Experian and Equifax credit bureaus as paid in full.

Since the transactions made on the Extra Card are paid back daily, credit utilization will report as paid in full. This can help your credit scores because credit utilization is 30 percent of your credit score. Extra will report monthly as paid in full.

Good credit not only determines the price of major borrowing needs like getting a mortgage or car loan but being able to choose where you want to rent also depends on your credit history. Whether you can get the job you want, and getting good rates on car insurance can also be determined by your credit history.

It’s getting harder to live a life without a credit score. If you want to build credit but not incur debt, the Extra Debit Card is worth taking a further look. For people with poor credit, finding a credit card can be difficult. The Extra Debit Card can fill the need of building a positive credit history with no credit check required.

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