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Build credit without credit cards.

Jessica: I'm eighteen years old, I'll be attending college in the fall.. I've applied for multiple credit cards and none will accept me because I don't have any credit. That's understandable, but how am I expected to have credit? I did find a couple cards that approved me, but there is a security deposit of $200 and that's just ridiculous, I refuse to pay it. I have a debit card, but that gets me no where in building credit and I don't know what I'm supposed to do. I can't even get approved for student loans, so how do I pay for college? Any suggestions?

TQR Answer: If you wait until you start college you will find out that many credit card companies will come looking for YOU. It is an old practice of card companies to solicit college freshmen.

Another option for a credit card may be a card issued by a local credit union or bank you already use versus a company that doesn't know you. However, there are other ways to build a credit history without credit cards.

1. Secured Loans. That means you buy something with the credit offered by a retailer (a car, furniture, TV, etc)

2. Your rent. On time rent payments are now part of your Experian credit history and are reported through their RentBureau service.

3. Personal loan with co-signer. Having a parent co-sign a small personal loan and then making on time payments over
3-6 months until it is paid off will give your credit history a lift.

4. Shop around. Try card comparison sites such as and look for cards that may closer match your search criteria.

The Quarter Roll is published to provide personal insights and opinions on everyday ways of saving and managing money, budgeting, and reducing debt. The Quarter Roll does not give professional accounting, legal, or investing counsel. The ideas, examples, and advice presented on this site are solely the opinion of the authors based on his or her personal experiences. All photos courtesy of The Quarter Roll, iStockphoto, or Dreamstime. All rights reserved. This site is best viewed when using Adobe Flash Player. free money magazine