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Personal and Business Banking

Credit Builder Loan

Whether starting out or starting over, a great way to build your credit history

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credit builder

Credit Builder Loan

  • Build or rebuild your credit rating
  • Build savings while you borrow
  • Terms from 12 to 24 months
  • Low fixed rate

Please refer to Details and Rates tabs for additional information and important disclosures.

"Almost paid off"

Open quote I received the loan to pay off my High Rate credit cards. The payment plan was manageable, and the skip payment worked great for Christmas, and I'll have it paid off Soon! Close quote

— Douglas53, Marysville, OH

Credit Builder Loan Overview

The Credit Builder Loan is specifically designed to help you build or rebuild your credit history as you build up to $3,000 in savings plus dividends. Here's how it works...

  • The amount you borrow is deposited into a DCU savings account that you cannot touch until the loan is repaid.
  • You make regular payments on the loan.
  • As you repay on time, you establish a positive payment history that we report to the credit bureaus.*
  • Based on those reports, your credit history and credit score improves over time.
  • A higher credit score translates into better rates on future loans. It can also have a positive impact obtaining insurance and certain jobs that consider credit history.
  • When you finish repaying the loan, you'll have the full balance in the DCU Savings Account, including dividends, to use as you please – for a down payment, education, home improvements, anything.

Credit Builder Features

  • Loan amounts from $500 to $3,000
  • Terms from 12 to 24 Months
  • Loan funds in the DCU Savings account earn dividends at the published dividend rate for this account
  • Loan interest rate is fixed at 5% Annual Percentage Rate (APR)
  • After a minimum of 12 months of satisfactory payments, you'll receive a .50% discount off the interest rate on your next qualified consumer loan. **

Example loan payment schedule – A $1,000 Credit Builder Loan with an APR of 5.00% for 18 months has an approximate monthly payment of $57.79.


* Satisfactory payments are those received by DCU on or before the due date for at least the scheduled payment amount.

** Real Estate and Credit Card loans do not qualify for the discount. The granting of a Credit Builder Loan does not guarantee future loans. All loans are subject to credit approval.

Credit Builder Loan Rates

Whether You're Starting Out or Starting Over, a Credit Builder Loan is a Great Way to Build Your Credit History.

Our Best Rates*
Terms / Features Annual Percentage Rate Estimated Monthly Payment
per $1,000
Up to 24 Months
Maximum Loan Amount $3,000
5.00% $43.87

Rates are effective .

* Rates are determined by your personal credit history, account relationship, and payment method.

Credit Builder Loan is rated 3.1 out of 5 by 7.
Rated 5 out of 5 by from A positive way to build credit scores Thank you for having this available. I took out two small, one year credit builder loans in the last two years. When I applied for the first credit builder loan, I had a "ZERO" score. I had paid for everything with cash. Now in two short years, I have built a somewhat decent credit score.I was approved for an unsecured credit card in July and another just on Friday. Thank you to all of the DCU Staff.
Date published: 2015-11-09
Rated 5 out of 5 by from best financial experience to date I have gotten the best financial experience ever. Am so grateful to dcu for making this experience a reality
Date published: 2014-10-19
Rated 5 out of 5 by from almost paid off I received the loan to pay off my High Rate credit cards. The payment plan was manageable, and the skip payment worked great for Christmas, and I'll have it payed off Soon.....
Date published: 2011-05-23
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Very Helpful Great way to build your credit and great customer service.
Date published: 2017-05-03
Rated 1 out of 5 by from Why bother advertising this If you have a low credit score and bad credit history, you won’t get approved. DCU, just rename it to something else. I’ve been a customer for 8 years now. I was hoping for your help in rebuilding my credit through this loan but since you denied me, I might as well close my account and go to jDCU. They have much better locations in Lowell anyway.
Date published: 2018-08-18
Rated 1 out of 5 by from Change the name This is called the credit builder loan , but the loan is not being approved for a low credit score. I wanted to take this product just to increase my credit history and not to borrow any money. But it was denied , saying my credit was too low. Isnt that the reason why you have put such a name for the loan.? If you are not willing to to provide such solutions , please do not advertise them. Although I like the other member services , not satisfied with this one. Thanks
Date published: 2018-03-01
Rated 1 out of 5 by from Needs Clarification Better clarification is needed, as this is the same loan product as the savings secured loan. While reviewing my options the secured loan states there is a “pledge” while the credit builder does not. The credit builder loan implies that DCU will provide a loan in the amount you requested, not to exceed the 3k, and will deposit and hold these funds in a savings account. Once the loan has been paid in full the funds would be released for the member to use. The only difference between the loan products are the terms, rates, and amounts requested. In my opinion, the consumer is much better off with the secured loan as you will have a much lower interest rate. This is off the DCU website. Credit Builder Loan Overview The Credit Builder Loan is specifically designed to help you build or rebuild your credit history as you build up to $3,000 in savings plus dividends. Here's how it works... • The amount you borrow is deposited into a DCU savings account that you cannot touch until the loan is repaid. Savings-Secured Loan Details • Preserve your hard-earned savings – It can take a long time to build up your savings and a short time to spend it. With Savings-Secured Loans, you can use your savings as collateral, borrow at economical rates, and keep your savings intact. While pledged as collateral, your savings continues to earn competitive dividends. • Borrow against your DCU Savings Account balance – Rates on loans secured by a DCU Savings Account are a flat rate. Borrow as little as $200 and borrow for as long as 10 years.
Date published: 2014-01-31
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Are you borrowing against your own money in your savings account or are you given an actual loan?

I am confused. When reading everything over it sounds like the money in the savings account is the collateral for the loan. Is the money given to you as a loan or do YOU have to put up the money in your savings as collateral and then borrow an additional amount that builds your credit?
Asked by: Stephanie
With the credit builder loan they provide the money to you but you cannot use it, it will be held in a savings acct until pd off then you get the money, on a savings secured loan you have your money in savings and use that as the security for the loan so the rates are better.
Answered by: Mommy2-3withd
Date published: 2017-07-29

Is it possible to get the credit builder loan if you do not have any established credit?

Say if you are 18 and have absolutely no credit.
Asked by: arianar
I'm sure u can. But call DCU. They r very helpful. Be wise. Use self control w/ credit cards. Learn from me. Don't go out and max them out. Try to pay off each month. When I was in early 20's, I was foolish. Ruined my credit. Now in mid 50's, I have a somewhat decent score. Getting it by starting with opening a DCU account & credit builder loan with direct deposit from my paycheck and autopay from savings to the loan. When I joined I had a zero score. I had paid everything with cash. Not a way to establish credit. Best Wishes.
Answered by: PATRIOTS FAN # 21
Date published: 2016-01-09

Can my son have a credit builder loan using my home as equity

My son needs about $1000. for expenses at college. I would like him to have a loan in his name to build credit. Can he use my home equity to loan against to get a lower rate
Asked by: Geo
If you wish to apply for a Home Equity Loan against your home for the $1,000 needed and list your son as a co-borrower to assist him in building credit, that option is available. Please give us a call at 800/328-8797 option 3 to proceed with applying.
Answered by: DCU Staff
Date published: 2013-10-23

Can the credit builder loan be paid off early?

If I needed the loan paid off before 12 months, is that possible? Also, If I signed up for a 24 month term, could I pay it early in like 15 months if I wanted? Thank you
Asked by: Kate
You should be able to pay it off early, but be aware that they pull two hard inquiries on your Equifax credit report. One for opening your savings account and another for applying for the loan even if it is secured.
Answered by: TRW
Date published: 2018-03-13

If I have a credit score in the upper 400's, would I be approve of this offer, since it's purpose is to build my credit?

Asked by: Shaker
You will need to apply in order for a Loan Officer to review your request and determine your eligibility.
Answered by: DCU Staff
Date published: 2017-06-24
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"DCU is great!"

Open quote Getting a loan from DCU could not be any easier. The people work with you to make sure you know what to do and how things work... Great job! Close quote

— MO Dually, Kansas City, MI

Easy Ways To Apply Today

  1. Apply Online – 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.
  2. Apply by phone – 24 hours a day, 7 days a week call 800.328.8797 or 508.263.6700 and press 3.
  3. Any DCU Branch – Visit your local branch.

"I'm very happy with my loan"

Open quote Everyone I spoke to was very friendly, helpful, and made me feel valued. Close quote

— Elton, Eagle Lake, FL

Credit Builder Loan Resources

  • Rebuilding your credit ratingStreetWise article on how to rebuild your credit rating.
  • StreetWise Guide to CreditStreetWise guide helps you understand how credit works, how to use it responsibly, how to know if you are having difficulty with it, and what to do if you are.
  • Payment Protection – Helps relieve the pressure of your loan payments during certain unexpected events.
  • How to Make Your Loan Payment – We make it easy to make your loan payment. Find out more about our convenient payment options.

Credit Builder Loan Related Links

  • Calculate Finance Charges – Sometime members have questions about how Finance Charges or Interest on their DCU loan accounts are calculated. This information is designed to make the information in your loan disclosures a little easier to understand.
  • Schedule of Fees and Service Charges – Details regarding member benefits that may help you avoid fees.