Secured Visa FAQ
What is a secured credit card?
A secured credit card is a product in which the security deposit you provide is equal to your credit limit. It works just like any other credit card. You are required to make regular monthly payments over and above the security deposit because this is not a "prepaid" card.
Why choose a secured credit card?
The Home Trust Secured Visa Card will allow you to build or rebuild a solid credit rating. Many people have been declined by the banks for a credit card due to past bad credit or because they have no credit history.
Having a credit card is not a luxury anymore, it's a necessity. The Home Trust Secured Visa Card allows you to make purchases on-line or by phone, book a flight or rent a car. And Visa is accepted at over 24 million locations worldwide.
How does this help me establish or re-establish my credit?
Home Trust reports your file to the credit bureau on monthly basis. Your file is updated, and your credit history begins. Both the primary applicant's and the co-applicant's credit bureau can be updated.
What is the minimum/maximum credit limit?
The minimum credit limit is $500, and the maximum is $10,000.
How can I increase my credit limit?
You can increase the limit on your card by sending additional funds (personal or personal certified cheque, money order or bank draft) drawn on a Canadian Financial Institution to Home Trust and clearly indicating that you are requesting a credit limit increase.
Who qualifies for the program?
Almost everyone who applies (approval rate is above 95%).
Who does not qualify for the program?
People who are currently in bankruptcy do not qualify.
How do you apply for a Home Trust Secured Visa Card?
Print and fill out an application form above, and mail your security deposit (and application form) to: Home Trust Company, Attn: Visa Department, 145 King Street West, Suite 2300, Toronto, Ontario, M5H 1J8. They will not process an application without the security deposit.
Do I need to send additional documents along with my application form?
If you have never applied for credit in Canada, you probably do not have a credit file under your name at the credit bureau. If that is the case, then you may be required to provide copies of documents that verify your address, date of birth or Social Insurance Number (e.g. government issued identification, utility bill, bank statement).
What happens if I am declined?
If your application is declined, Home Trust will return your security deposit to you (cheques are not cashed until the application is approved).
How can I send my security deposit?
Attach a cheque made payable to "Home Trust Company" (personal or personal certified cheque, money order or bank draft from a Canadian Financial Institution) to your application form and mail it to:
Home Trust Company
Attn: Visa Department
145 King St. West, Suite 2300
How long does it take to get a card?
The application process takes approximately 2-3 weeks from the time the application and security deposit are received, if you send a personal certified cheque, money order or bank draft, drawn on a Canadian Financial Institution. It will take up to an additional 15 days if you send a personal cheque, as they must wait for personal cheques to be cleared by the bank.
Do I have to be a Canadian resident to get a Home Trust Secured Visa Card?
The card is available to Canadian residents except residents of Québec.
Is there any way to speed up the approval process?
Ensuring that your application is complete will help to speed up the approval process. A personal certified cheque, money order or bank draft, drawn on a Canadian Financial Institution will expedite the process as we will not have to wait for the funds to clear.
Also, if either of the following applies to you, there are documents you can send with your application to ensure that your file is not delayed:
1. If you have moved since your last loan/credit request or if you do not have a credit history, send a copy of your driver's license or a bill that matches your current address
2. If you have recently been discharged from bankruptcy, attach your certificate of discharge
You may request "rush delivery" to have your card delivered to you by courier for a fee of $39.00. Please note that this is only a rush delivery and it will not affect the approval process.
When do I get my deposit back?
Your deposit will be held as long as you have an account with Home Trust. When you close your account, we will return your deposit once all purchases and fees have cleared.
What is the interest rate?
There are two interest rates to choose from:
14.90% on purchases with cash advances at 19.80%
19.99% on purchases with cash advances at 19.99%
Interest is not charged if the balance is paid in full by the statement date. However, for cash advances, interest is charged from the time the advance is made to the time it is paid off.
Do I have to pay the balance in full each month?
You have to pay at least the minimum payment on the statement. You cannot use your security deposit to pay off the balance.
How do I make payments on my account?
You can make a payment at any Canadian Financial Institution that bears the Visa logo, either in the branch or through web or telephone banking. If you prefer, you can mail your cheque or money order directly to Home Trust in the envelope provided to you with your statement.
What if I have a past bankruptcy?
You may still qualify if you have a past bankruptcy as long as you have been discharged. There is no waiting period after a discharge.
Is the Home Trust Secured Visa Card available nationally?
It is available in every province and territory except Québec.
How old do you have to be to get a credit card?
At least the age of majority in the province/territory where you reside (18 years of age in Ontario, Alberta, Saskatchewan, Manitoba, Prince Edward Island; 19 years of age in British Columbia, New Brunswick, Nova Scotia, Newfoundland/Labrador and the territories).
How much can I spend?
You may make purchases up to the limit of your Home Trust Secured Visa Card or you can use your card to make cash advances at ATMs or at a bank. Your Home Trust Secured Visa Card is a revolving line of credit. As you use your credit card, you are continually borrowing against your line of credit and repaying it. The amount of credit you have available at any time will vary depending on your current outstanding balance.