First Savings Bank, operating out of Sioux Falls, SD, offers four different credit cards with varying rates and fees. The offers range from 15.6% for their best offer to a 29.9% rate designed for people with poor or no credit histories. Like other credit card issuers, First Savings Bank solicits many people to apply via mail.
Why Credit Card Companies Like South Dakota
First Savings Credit Card is not alone in operating from its South Dakota headquarters. After the state passed a law in the 1970s removing caps on insurance rates, many companies relocated to South Dakota. The law change made it possible for credit card companies to charge consumers any interest rate they chose, and fees that had been previously capped by the laws of other states to ten percent or less then rose dramatically. First Savings is one of numerous companies that have found it to be profitable to operate in the usury-ignoring state.
Fees and Rates
For those who qualify, the best offer through First Savings is its card with a 15.6% interest rate charged on balances owed. The card does not have an annual fee and late fees are $10 if a payment is late.
The mid-grade level offer from First Savings is a card with a 21.9% annual interest rate. Consumers are additionally charged a $50 annual fee along with an additional fee of $20 for any added authorized user, also charged annually. Late fees charged to customers for this card are $25 dollars.
First Savings offers two cards obviously designed for people with poor or no credit histories. The two worst offers each have rates of 29.9%. Both of these cards additionally charge $75 annual fees plus $20 annual fees for authorized users. If a payment is made late, the consumer is charged $25 dollars. The minimum credit limit for these two cards is $350, which is where most people who qualify will start out.
While these offers are not great, there are a few pros to getting a card through First Savings. First, the company has an A+ rating by the Better Business Bureau. While there have been a number of complaints made against the card issuer, the company has apparently satisfactorily resolved them after the BBB complaints were filed.
Another pro is that people who have very poor or no credit histories may qualify for one of their unsecured cards. Obtaining a credit card and making all the payments on time helps people build or improve their scores.
Even the best card with its 15.6% rate is mediocre. People with good credit could find cards with better rates from other card issuers by shopping around. People who have bad or no credit who have tougher times qualifying for credit cards will most likely be charged rates as high as First Savings’ rates from other issuers as well. However, the annual fees are quite high for the three cards that charge them.
The annual fee is immediately charged against the card’s credit limit meaning customers will owe $75.00 plus any interest that accrues even if they never spend any more money on the card. Many credit cards charge annual fees, but many are much lower than those charged by First Savings. Consumers who have bad credit may be wiser to select a secured credit card with lower fees and rates to help build their credit instead of one of these cards.
In review, the bank is legitimate and quite reputable, but consumers may do better by choosing a card with a lower annual fee from a different card issuer.