Best Credit Building Apps
Tanya June 24, 2024

Best Credit Building Apps Like Self To Consider In 2024

Surprisingly, 80% of Americans are actively working to improve their credit. 

It's a staggering statistic, and it's one you definitely don't want to associate with. But here's the thing – you don't have to! With credit building apps like Self and many others out there, you can get onto a path of financial empowerment. For instance, apps like CoolCredit, Cushion, Experian Boost, and Kikoff have competitive features to help you build your credit. So, if you're looking for the best credit building apps in 2024, their features, and their prices, you're in the right place! 

But before we delve into the nitty and gritty of credit-builder platforms similar to Self, let's take a moment to explore what they do and why it's important to focus on improving your credit.

How Do These Self-Credit Builder Apps Work?

Credit building apps have truly made it easier than ever before to build your credit. They typically offer features such as disputing credit reports, secured credit cards, or credit builder loans.

Why Do You Need To Build Your Credit?

Building credit is like laying the foundation for your financial future, giving you access to better borrowing options. 

Moreover, building credit:

  • Increases the chances of getting loans at more favorable interest rates.
  • Helps secure rental properties.
  • Qualifies for cards with better rewards and rates.
  • Ensures access to credit in emergencies.
  • Crucial for major purchases and wealth-building.

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10 Apps That Are Similar to ‘Self’ & Good for Building Credit

There are numerous apps with processes and uses akin to Self, as detailed below.

1. Cushion

With Cushion, you can effortlessly track and pay both your bills and BNPL loans, all from the convenience of one app. Plus, by paying with the Cushion Debit Card, you can not just settle your bills but also build your credit history. It has a Google Calendar sync feature as well, helping you manage due dates easily. 

Moreover, this app integrates seamlessly with your bank account and email and tracks and categorizes your bills and BNPL payments. 

Price - It exclusively offers subscription-based services with two pricing tiers: a monthly plan at $4.99 and a premium option at $12.99 per month.

Pros - 

  • You can keep an eye on your BNPL payments. 
  • Consolidate your bill tracking on one platform.

Cons - 

  • Requires payment for credit building features.
  • Needs connection of BNPL and bank account data. 

Unique Selling Point (USP) - 

Helps in tracking bills, subscriptions, BNPL obligations, credit building and spending insights. 

2. CoolCredit 

There are credit building apps designed to boost your credit score without taking out loans. While it might sound too good to be true, it’s absolutely possible with CoolCredit. 

CoolCredit is one of the top apps like Self, which makes your credit journey a breeze. With this credit building app, you can avoid the hassle of loans or new credit cards to build your credit history. Instead, it securely retrieves your credit reports and uses AI to highlight areas for improvement effortlessly. In addition to this, this DIY credit repair app scans your credit reports, highlights what’s dragging your score down, and simplifies dispute resolution by handling it automatically.

Price - You can opt for a $12.00 monthly plan or go for a yearly subscription at $96.00 and enjoy 4 months free. Additionally, you get expert credit repair analysis for just $19.

Pros - 

  • You can improve your credit without needing a loan. 
  • DIY credit repair app featuring an expert advice option to support you from start to finish. 

Cons - 

  • After sending the letter to the credit bureaus, if they identify some errors and refuse to correct your credit score, you might not find this app helpful. 

Unique Selling Point (USP) -

CoolCredit allows you to pick and send pre-made letter templates to credit bureaus, making it easy to dispute errors on your credit reports. With instant updates and customized alerts, this app helps you confidently take charge of your credit future.

3. Experian Boost

Experian Boost lets you earn credit for timely payments on utilities, telecom, rent, insurance, and some streaming services. Whether you're building credit from scratch or boosting an existing score, these added payments can really help. Plus, only on-time payments are considered, so late ones won't hurt your score.

Once you sign up, you get a free Experian membership with benefits like credit monitoring. Linking your bank and credit card accounts costs nothing, and if you decide to disconnect, you still retain your free Experian CreditWorks Basic membership.

Price - Free to use.

Pros - 

  • Routine payments can help raise your credit score. 
  • You can check your Experian credit score at no cost.

Cons - 

  • Impacts solely your credit report and score with Experian.
  • Provides Experian with access to your personal spending information.

Unique Selling Point (USP) -

Great for individuals who consistently pay rent and utility expenses. 

4. Kikoff

 Kikoff is a standout credit building app like Self, providing a $750 line of credit without any interest or fees. You can use this credit to shop at the Kikoff store.

Purchases made with your Kikoff credit line are reported to Equifax and Experian, two of the major credit bureaus, helping to boost your credit score. Best of all, there's no credit check needed for approval—just be a U.S. citizen with a Social Security number.

Price - Plans to use this app start at only $5 per month. Keep in mind, though, that the credit line is for financing purchases solely from the Kikoff store.

Pros - 

  • Get approved instantly without a hard credit check.
  • Might lead to a notable increase in your credit score. 

Cons - 

  • You'll be charged $5 every month.
  • Restriction applies: $750 credit line can only be used for Kikoff store purchases. 

Unique Selling Point (USP) -

Cover all key aspects influencing your credit score: payment history, credit utilization, account age, and variety of credit types.

5. StellarFi

 By using the StellarFi Virtual Bill Pay Card to pay your bills, your repayments to StellarFi get reported to two major credit bureaus, helping improve your credit score.

After setting up, StellarFi ensures your bills are paid on time, automatically debiting the amount from your linked bank account. Want more control? You can also opt to pay your bills manually. Additionally, it reports to all three credit bureaus, offers a 30-day free trial, and includes access to personal credit coaches.

Price - The app comes at a cost of $4.99 for the Lite version and $9.99 for Prime.

Pros - 

  • No credit check and interest apply. 
  • Enjoy a 30-day trial for only $0.99. 

Cons - 

  • Counts on a third-party provider for bill settlement.
  • Monthly charges range from $4.99 to $19.99. 

Unique Selling Point (USP) -

Does not charge any interest or upfront deposit.

6. MoneyLion Credit Builder

MoneyLion is a financial services company with a membership program that includes credit-builder loans, online banking, and more. You can sign up for a free MoneyLion account, which gives you access to a zero-fee checking account and an investment account. Plus, with an account, you might qualify for 0% APR cash advances up to $250. Keep in mind, though, that getting a loan at this rate isn't guaranteed. MoneyLion will consider things like your income to decide what APR you qualify for. 

Price - 

  • Weekly membership payment: $4.60
  • Biweekly membership payment: $9.20
  • Semi-monthly membership payment: $9.99

You can upgrade to the membership by paying $19.99 a month.

Pros - 

  • Helpful in building credit profile over the course of 12 months with regular payments.
  • You can gain access to resources that aid in improving your credit score.

Cons - 

  • Loans carry a high APR.
  • You'll need to pay a monthly membership fee of $19.99. 

Unique Selling Point (USP) -

 This credit building app provides access to loans up to $1,000.

7. Grow Credit

Grow Credit stands out from other apps like Self. Instead of taking out a loan, you get a Mastercard to handle your subscription payments. You can use this Mastercard to pay for services like Netflix, HBO Max, and Spotify. By paying off the bill each month, you can improve your credit score. If you have no or limited credit history, this app can help.

Price - Free membership with a $17 monthly cap. For higher limits, there's a $4.99 plan that lets you spend up to $50 on subscriptions and a $9.99 plan for up to $150.

Pros - 

  • You can use your ongoing subscriptions to build your credit. 
  • Reports activity to all three major credit bureaus. 

Cons - 

  • The free version limits monthly spending to $17. 
  • Additional plans range from $4.99 to $9.99 monthly.

Unique Selling Point (USP) -

The app claims it has the potential to raise your credit score by as many as 44 points.

8. Ava

The Ava Card pairs with a Credit Builder Account to help improve your credit. You can use the Ava Card to pay for subscription services from an extensive list of approved merchants. The Credit Builder Account is a loan that requires $30 monthly payments for 12 months, and you get the entire amount back when the term ends.

This app is unique because it reports to all three major credit bureaus and can report your payments within 24 hours, allowing you to see results more quickly.

Price - To get started, you'll need to pay $9 per month, totaling $108 per year, or choose the yearly plan for $72.

Pros -

  • Build your credit score through multiple avenues, all without a credit check. 
  • User-friendly tools for improving credit. 

Cons - 

  • Membership fee of $9 per month.
  • Can only use the credit card for certain streaming platforms.

Unique Selling Point (USP) -

Support in locking in savings while you settle debts and keep track of your credit journey as it unfolds.

9. Brigit

If you need instant cash advances, a credit building app like Brigit can help you out. Firstly, you need to sign up and link your primary checking account using the Plaid third-party app, ensuring your information stays secure.

Brigit then analyzes your account to see how its tools can build your credit. On top of that, you can start with the free plan to fine-tune your budgeting skills and find out if you're eligible for cash advances. 

Price - To access the full range of features, you can upgrade to the Plus Plan for $9.99 a month.

Pros -

  • Provides tools for budgeting and offers overdraft protection. 
  • You can extend payments. 

Cons - 

  • Sets a high minimum and limits the maximum amount available. 

Requires a monthly subscription fee. 

Unique Selling Point (USP) -

Offers up to $250 as a maximum advance without the need for a credit check.

10. Dovly

Dovly is a credit building app that uses algorithms to find any issues that lower your score. As a Dovly member, whether you're using their online platform or app, it connects to your credit report. Then, Dovly takes care of the hard work. It creates and sends dispute letters to the credit bureaus to help remove negative items affecting your score.

Price - Dovly offers three plans: a free plan, a Credit Maximizer Premium Plan for $39.99 per month, and a Credit Maximizer Ultimate Plan for $8.33 per month or $99 annually.

Pros - 

  • Can boost your score by 79 points.
  • A personalized strategy is crafted by the AI engine to achieve optimal results for you.

Cons - 

  • The free plan disputes reports to TransUnion only.
  • Free plan is not available in all the states. 

Unique Selling Point (USP) -

Reports an 87% rate of satisfied users. The free plan allows reporting to TransUnion without requiring a credit card.

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Conclusion

In this blog, we've discovered several credit building apps like Self that make boosting your credit easier than ever. These apps help you progress toward your goals in a straightforward, user-friendly manner.

All these apps offer a range of features and have distinctive pricing structures to suit different needs and budgets. They provide options like loans and credit cards to help you manage monthly installments and avoid missed payments that could harm your credit score. However, if you are one of those who believe in managing their credit on their own, DIY credit repair apps like CoolCredit are your go-to choice. 

Download the app to learn how it works and how it helps boost your credit! 

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