March 10, 2024

Kikoff Review

Read more about Kikoff
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Kikoff offers an affordable credit line, which can help you build your credit. But what's the catch? Read on to find out.

5-point scale (the higher, the better)

Pros and Cons

  • Inexpensive way to build credit
  • Cancel anytime
  • No lock-in period
  • Does not report to TransUnion
  • Kikoff Store items may not be valuable

Bottom Line

Low-cost credit builder that packs in extra features for credit building

Imagine being fresh out of college with no credit history or credit score. And you don't even know where to start.

Well, one option you can try is Kikoff. You can build your credit for as low as $5/mo with no credit requirements. You can also get approved instantly.

Keep reading to learn how it works and its features. If it doesn't seem like the right option, you'll also find alternatives at the end of the article.

What is Kikoff Credit Builder?

Kikoff is a credit builder that offers a credit line you can use to purchase items from the Kikoff store. The credit builder costs $5/mo, while the credit line is $750.[1] The Kikoff store offers credit-building plans, e-books, and digital courses.

To help build your credit, Kikoff reports your payments to Equifax and Experian. If you use features like Rent Reporting and Secured Credit Card in your account, Kikoff will also report your rent payments and card transactions to the credit bureaus.

In general, Kikoff has helped increase the credit scores of its users by over 9.6 million points.[2] Note that you cannot withdraw or cash out money from your credit line.

How do you know if Kikoff is the right option for you? Read on.

Who is it best for?

Kikoff works best for you if you're on a budget or if you have a thin credit history. You can use the credit line to add positive transactions to this credit history.

Plus, you can decrease your credit utilization ratio by adding another line of credit to your profile.

Do you actually get money from Kikoff?
No, you don't get any money from Kikoff. Instead, you'll need to pay $5/mo to use a $750 credit line— a credit line that's only useable in the Kikoff store.

Who should skip Kikoff?

Kikoff may not be the best option if you are looking for extensive ways to repair your credit. Experienced credit repair companies may be a better option for you instead.

However, if you are considering this credit builder, keep scrolling to learn its pros and cons.

Pros And Cons


  • Affordable credit builder
  • 0% interest
  • No administrative fees, late fees, or annual fees
  • Cancel anytime without penalties
  • Kikoff store prices start at $10
  • No hard credit check
  • No lock-in period for the credit line
  • Android and iOS apps available
  • Available in all states


  • Provides VantageScore only
  • Items in the Kikoff store may not be of value to you
  • No phone number available for contact
  • Kikoff only reports to the 3 credit bureaus with the Secured Credit Card feature

You can close your credit line at any time. However, it's best to do so before you make your first payment. That way, you don't negatively affect your average account age.

To fully understand how Kikoff can help build your credit, here's how it works.

What matters most to you in a credit-building service?

How does Kikoff Credit Builder work?

There are only 3 recurring steps to the process:

  1. Pay the $5 monthly fee. This lets you use the $750 credit line to buy items from the Kikoff store (item price starts at $10).
  2. Pay your fees every month on time.
  3. Kikoff reports all your payments to Equifax and Experian.

If you sign up for Rent Reporting and Secured Credit Card, Kikoff also reports these transactions to the credit bureaus. Your rent payments will be reported to Equifax, while your card transactions will be reported to Equifax, Experian, and TransUnion.

You can keep using the credit line every month unless you want to cancel it. Plus, you can monitor your credit within the Kikoff app to see any progress or issues.

Kikoff also allows you to set up an auto-pay method. That way, you won't forget your monthly payment.

Can you buy anything with Kikoff Credit?
You can only use your Kikoff credit line to purchase items from the Kikoff store. You can buy from a selection of other credit-building plans, e-books, and digital courses. This means you can't use your credit line to buy gas or groceries.

Before Kikoff, how did you build your credit?

Pricing and Fees

Kikoff Credit Builder costs $5/mo. But note that you also need to consider the cost of your purchases from the Kikoff store.

That said, Kikoff doesn't charge interest fees, late fees, or other hidden fees. There are also no sign-up fees for using Rent Reporting and applying for a Secured Credit Card.

You can even use the Dispute tool for free to send letters to the credit bureaus. You can use it to challenge erroneous items in your credit report.


Aside from using the revolving credit line to build your credit history, here are other features you can get with Kikoff.

Kikoff Secured Credit Card
The Secured Credit Card works as a debit card and a checking account. It's a physical card that you can use for groceries, shopping, and dining.

You can use the Secured Credit Card to build a credit history too. For a minimum deposit of $50, Kikoff reports your transaction to the three credit bureaus.[3]

The funds you will deposit set the credit limit of the card. What's more, you can link qualifying direct deposits from your paycheck and use your funds up to 2 days early. You'll also get overdraft protection without any fees.

Can I withdraw money from Kikoff?
You can withdraw money from Kikoff using your Kikoff Secured Credit Card. You can get your cash from any of the 55,000 Allpoint ATMs worldwide for free. If you withdraw from an out-of-network ATM, fees may apply.

Kikoff Rent Reporting
Kikoff also features Rent Reporting, where it reports your rent payments to Equifax.

If you already have an account with Kikoff, just link the bank account you currently use to pay rent. Then, fill out information about your lease and landlord.

Just make sure to pay on time to avoid late payments that may drag down your score.

Kikoff can also report your rent payments for the past 24 months. You just need to pay a one-time fee of $50.[4]

You can dispute items on your Equifax credit report through your Kikoff account. You can select up to 5 negative items dragging your credit, then send letters to the credit bureaus.

Kikoff will email you a confirmation for your disputes. You will also receive notifications for updates.

It can take 45–60 days to process your dispute letters. You may also check the status of your disputes in your Kikoff account.

Does Kikoff really help build credit?

On average, Kikoff users with a credit score below 600 get a 58-point increase by paying on time.[5] This can be thanks to the many features that Kikoff offers to help build your credit.

You can use the credit line to purchase and pay back purchases every month. You can also report your rent payments and use the secured credit card to add more transactions to your credit history.

However, using Kikoff does not guarantee that your credit will improve right away. Nor will it ensure that your credit score will increase every month. Your debts, other accounts, and payment activities also influence how much your credit will improve.

If you're dead set on trying out this credit builder, here's how you can get started.

How to open a Kikoff account

Kikoff does not perform a hard pull on your credit. And you can open an account within minutes.

Here's how:

  1. Go to Kikoff's sign-up page and join using your email.
  2. Confirm your email and log in to your account.
  3. Fill in your name, phone number, birth date, home address, and Social Security number.

Is Kikoff legit?

Yes, Kikoff is legitimate. It has over 1 million downloads from Google Play with an average rating of 4.7 out of 5 stars.

It also has an average rating of 4.9 out of 5 stars from over 91,000 iOS ratings. And it has received a B- rating from the Better Business Bureau.[6]

To help you understand what these ratings are about, here are some of the feedback from some of Kikoff's users.

Kikoff Customer Service and Reviews

Ratings SourceAverage Rating
Apple App Store4.9 out of 5 ★ from over 91,000 ratings
Google Play Store4.7 out of 5 ★ from over 45,000 ratings
Trustpilot4.1 out of 5 ★ from over 800 ratings

Generally, Kikoff has received good customer feedback. For example, it has helped boost Bill's credit score from below 500.

"I used both Kikoff and Self credit builders. I had horrible credit, below 500, [and] both of these credit builders got me above 600. [After which,] Capital One, PayPal, and Discover have all given me unsecured credit cards. Kikoff and Self have been life savers." (from Trustpilot)

However, not all users had a good experience with Kikoff. In fact, Kat's account was closed without warning.

"I used them for a while. I made payments on time, and then, [I've] come to find out they closed my account for no reason at all. So yes, this is a scam, and they also reported it to the credit bureau." (from Trustpilot)

Many users have benefitted from using Kikoff. However, it's not perfect and not all users will have the same experience.

Many users have commented on the lack of proper customer support, some surprising drops in credit scores, and sudden account closures.

Kikoff's customer support channels are very limited. If you have concerns or questions, you can send an email to

If the negative feedback is enough to send you looking elsewhere, you can start with the following alternatives.

How Kikoff Compares

Kikoff vs Kovo
Kikoff and Kovo work similarly when it comes to building credit. Both come with a monthly fee and report your transactions to the credit bureaus.

However, Kovo is a little more expensive, with the membership fee costing you $10 per month for 24 months.[7] This lets you access various digital courses.

In addition, Kovo requires a lock-in commitment, while your Kikoff account does not expire. But unlike Kikoff, Kovo reports your monthly payments to Equifax, Experian, TransUnion, and Innovis.

You can also read our list of credit builder apps that offer various features for credit building, credit monitoring, and protection from fraudulent activities.

Kikoff vs Self
Self works like a reverse loan, and you need to pick a plan ranging from $25 to $150.

Starts at $25/month.
Sample loans: $25/mo, 24 mos, 15.92% APR; $35/mo, 24 mos, 15.69% APR; $48/mo, 24 mos, 15.51% APR; $150/mo, 24 mos, 15.82% APR. See

You'll be locked in for 24 months, just like with Kovo. However, Self locks your payments into a CD with one of its FDIC-insured partner banks so you get most of your money back in the end, minus interest and fees (which is not the case with Kikoff).

Regarding credit bureaus, Self reports your payments to Experian, Equifax, and TransUnion.

Kikoff vs Cheese
Cheese is a credit builder loan and works like Self. You'll be choosing between a $500, $1,000, or $2,000 loan amount. As for your loan term, you can choose between 12 or 24 months.

Although Kikoff may be more affordable, Cheese gets you most of your money back in the end. So, you're building credit and savings at the same time.

Also, Cheese reports your monthly payments to Equifax, Experian, and TransUnion.

Aside from Cheese, you can read about other credit builder loans that can help you save money and build credit at the same time.

Bottom Line

Kikoff is an affordable credit builder with minimal fees. For $5/month, you get access to a $750 credit line that gives you the chance to lower your utilization.

In addition, if you sign up for Rent Reporting and Secured Credit Card, you can add more positive transactions through your rent payments and card transactions. You can even use the free dispute tool to request removals in your credit report.

That said, you can see that Kikoff offers a variety of options to help you improve your score. It's a great tool to help you develop a good credit history as well.


  1. ^ Kikoff. Pricing, Retrieved 02/01/2024
  2. ^ Kikoff. Kikoff Credit Builder | Build Credit Safely & Responsibly. Retrieved 11/18/23
  3. ^ Kikoff. FAQ: Which bureaus does Kikoff report to?, Retrieved 02/01/2024
  4. ^ Kikoff. Rent Reporting, Retrieved 02/01/2024
  5. ^ Kikoff. FAQ: How much will Kikoff improve my credit score?, Retrieved 02/01/2024
  6. ^ Better Business Bureau. Kikoff Lending LLC. Retrieved 01/09/2024.
  7. ^ Kovo. How does credit building work?, Retrieved 02/01/2024

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Credit Builder Accounts & Certificates of Deposit made/held by Lead Bank, Sunrise Banks, N.A., SouthState Bank, N.A., First Century Bank, N.A., each Member FDIC. Subject to credit approval. Self Secured Visa® Credit Card issued by Lead Bank or SouthState Bank, N.A., each Member FDIC. See for details.


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