If you’re trying to find the best credit cards based on your credit score, you need to first understand where you stand. You need to get a current credit report from any of the three bureaus — Equifax, Experian, and TransUnion—each provide one free credit per year, but scores are commonly provided as a free source by lending institutions. Two formulas— FICO and VantageScore 3.0— can be used to calculate your credit score.

Credit scores range from 300-850 and help lenders assess levels of risk associated with borrowers. Scores ranging from 800 or higher is considered excellent, 740-799 is considered good, and 670-739 is considered average. Borrowers with scores below 700 are more likely to be denied credit, and the lower the score, the higher interest rate is likely to be. But with good credit you should be able to find cards that offer low rates and valuable perks.

How To Find The Best Credit Cards Based On Your Credit Score

Finding The Best Card Based on Your Credit Score

Whether you have good credit, bad credit, or are somewhere in the middle, Financial Globe’s Score Match provides a list of credit cards based on your credit score. The site also indicates the approval rate of the credit card, giving you a better idea of whether your application will be approved.

Some credit card issuers will do what is called a soft pull on your credit report to determine if you are likely to qualify for any of their cards. This also is known as being prequalified and it does not impact your credit score, unlike a full credit inquiry. This is helpful when trying to determine if you are likely to qualify for a card or not.

However, prequalification is no guarantee that you’ll be approved. Once you submit an application, the credit card issuer will do a much more thorough review of your credit history and income to determine if you meet their qualifications. If you are denied, you will receive a letter in the mail within a few days explaining the reason your application was turned down.

Try Secured Cards

If your credit is too poor to get approved for a standard credit card, a secured credit card might be worth trying. With this type of account, you’ll be required to pay a deposit to secure your credit limit. After several months of responsible use, you may be able to convert your secured credit card to an unsecured credit card or your newfound credit status may be in a better position to help you qualify for another unsecured credit card.

Once you get an unsecured card, you’ll probably have a low limit. The best way to help improve your credit score is to use the card for only one or two minor purchases each month, then pay off the bill in full. After several months of using the card and paying it off, you should see an improvement in your credit score.

Good Credit | How To Find The Best Credit Cards Based On Your Credit Score

On the other hand, if your credit rating is in the mid- to high-700s, there are many cards out there with low interest rates, cash back, points, or other perks for you. The perks available are numerous and varied. Some cards are specifically tied to airline miles or rewards for staying at specific hotels, others offer cash back, and some have points systems that allow you to use your points toward specific goods or services.

Most popular credit card providers have multiple variations of rewards systems. The best approach is to analyze what types of purchases you most commonly put on a credit card, then search for rewards programs that relate to those purchases.