Net First Platinum Card charges too much and delivers too little.
Consumers can expect a lot from the NetFirst Platinum card, including an unsecured $500 credit limit, no employment or credit checks, and approval for those with bad or no credit. It appears to be an excellent option for those looking to raise their credit scores. However, if you read the card’s terms and conditions carefully, you’ll discover that those ostensibly beneficial features are accompanied by strict limitations and high membership fees.
The NetFirst Platinum isn’t your typical credit card, which you can use anywhere Visa or Mastercard is accepted. It is a store card, not a Visa or Mastercard, that can only be used at the Horizon Outlet, a single online retailer. (The Horizon Gold card, another Horizon Card Services product, is the same way.)
For those looking to improve their credit, this card isn’t the best option. It’s costly and inflexible, and those with bad or limited credit have better options.
Monthly costs are high, and the benefits are mediocre.
The NetFirst Platinum card does not charge interest, but it does charge a monthly fee of $24.95 for a total of $299.40 per year. This is much more than you’d pay for a good secured credit card, especially if you pay off your balance each month in full.
And the expenses don’t end there. Other include:
- Fees for processing that vary “per item purchased.”
- For deliveries, there is a $3.50 signature verification fee.
- There is a $2.50 delivery fee for residents.
- A $5 “card issuance and account validation” fee is charged once.
The annual membership fee alone is nearly $300, which is more than many perks-laden rewards credit cards charge — but the benefits of the NetFirst Platinum aren’t even close. Your membership includes a $500 credit card as well as privacy protection, prescription benefit, legal assistance, and a roadside assistance plan.
A credit report is included in the privacy protection plan. However, at AnnualCreditReport.com, the federally authorized site, you are already entitled to a free credit report from each of the three major credit bureaus once a year. (You can also get a free credit report every week from each of the three bureaus until April 2021.)
My Universal RX, the prescription benefit, claims to save you up to 40% on “covered prescription medications,” but you can’t see the list of qualified medications until you sign up for the card.
“Three service calls or towing requests up to 15 miles not to exceed the operator cost of $50.00” are allowed each year under roadside protection. Keep in mind that you’re only covered for one call per 30-day period.
The legal assistance plan includes a 30-minute consultation with “a legal professional in your area specializing in your area of law interest.
Only the person whose name is on the account is eligible for these benefits. (You can add family members, but pricing is determined by calling customer service.)
Shipping is expensive, and you can’t pay with your credit card.
The Horizon Outlet, which is the only place where you can use your NetFirst Platinum card to shop, has a wide range of products, including clothing, home goods, electronics, and toys. Prices appear to be comparable to those found at any other discount retailer, but there’s a catch: fees, fees, fees. In addition to a $2 delivery fee and a $3.50 fee to verify your signature at delivery, there are reportedly exorbitant shipping costs. And you won’t be able to pay for these shipping costs with your NetFirst Platinum card.
We ask that you pay a small shipping and processing fee when you place your order so that we can finance you at 0% interest,” says the company. according to the Horizon Outlet’s Frequently Asked Questions page. You must use a Visa or Mastercard and enter a valid CVV number. Before you submit your order, you’ll be able to see how much you’ll be charged at checkout.” Because the NetFirst Platinum isn’t a Visa or Mastercard, you’ll need to pay for this with a traditional debit or credit card.
You have other options if you have bad or no credit.
If you’re interested in getting the NetFirst Platinum card to build your credit, there are other more affordable options that allow you to use your card at any retailer.
A secured credit card is one of the best options. A secured card, which is designed for people with no or bad credit, requires you to pay a security deposit up front, which is usually equal to the credit limit. This money is called collateral, and it will be returned to you when you close your credit card account in good standing and switch to a traditional unsecured credit card. In some cases, an issuer may even allow you to “graduate” to an unsecured card without closing your account; this will not be possible with the NetFirst Platinum card.
Many secured cards also report your monthly payments to all three major credit bureaus. The NetFirst Platinum only promises to report to “at least one” of them. That means that if a lender pulls your credit from a bureau that doesn’t have a record of your NetFirst Platinum account history in the future, you might not be eligible for the loan you’re looking for.
Of course, if you use a secured credit card to carry a balance, you can expect to pay interest on your average daily balance. It can also be difficult to save up the required deposit. However, it can be much less expensive over time than getting a card like the NetFirst Platinum, which charges annual nonrefundable fees rather than just once.
If you can’t come up with the one-time security deposit, you might want to look into “alternative” credit cards. These cards don’t usually require security deposits, instead relying on proprietary underwriting methods to assess your creditworthiness, which may include factors such as your income and employment status.