It can sometimes be difficult to rummage through the mass of credit card offers that come in the mail everyday. Some cards are easier to get, while others have great rewards programs, and still others give low interest rates. How does a consumer choose? You can make a good decision about credit cards after reading this article.
Make sure you thoroughly understand the terms before signing up for a new credit card. You might later find that your fees, payments and interest rates are different than what you expected. Read its entire policy, including the fine print.
Never, ever use your credit card to purchase something that you cannot afford. If you want a big ticket item you should not necessarily put that purchase on your credit card. Not only will you be saddled with interest, it may cause your monthly payments to become too high for you to keep up with. Leave the store, think over it for a day or so, and then make your decision. If you still decide to purchase it, the store’s financing usually gives low interest rates.
Credit Card Company
Never be scared to ask the credit card company to lower your interest rate. You should be able to negotiate a more beneficial interest rate if you have a reasonably long history of timely payments to your credit card company. Just by making one phone call, you might save yourself some money in the form of an improved and competitive rate.
Stay aware of your credit score. Good credit requires a score of at least 700. This is the bar that credit companies set for trustworthiness. Use your credit properly to maintain this level, or if you’re not there, use this method to reach this level. Once your score hits 700 or above, you will get all the best offers of credit with the lowest interest rates.
Try not to close your accounts. Although you may think doing this will help you raise your credit score, it can actually lower it. The reason is because the amount of available credit you have is lowered and that will be balanced against what you owe.
Check with your credit card company about their willingness to reduce your interest rates. If you have built a positive relationship with the company, they may reduce your interest rate. This can cause you to save a lot of money, and you won’t spend any money by asking.
When you owe more than you can pay, you can end up having financial difficulties in the future. When this occurs, it can be difficult to get car loans, apartment leases, or maybe even employment.
Don’t lie about your income when applying for bank cards. If the company does not confirm your income, the results may be a limit that is way too high for your needs, causing you to spend too much money, and getting into huge debt.
If possible, avoid cards with annual fees. Generally, cards with no annual fees are given to people who have better credit scores. Annual fees can make any rewards you earn not worth it. Sit down and figure out the math for the long term. Credit card issuers do not tout the annual fees; they are usually found in the fine print. Break out those reading glasses. Find out if those fees negate the promoted benefits. Usually, they do not.
Be certain you monitor card transactions carefully. Ideally, you should sign up for text alerts if they are offered by your credit card company. This gives you the opportunity to report any irregular activity as soon as possible after it occurs. Contact your bank if you learn of activity you didn’t authorize. You may also need to contact police.
Be sure that your child is responsible before you let them get charge cards. It is hard to say “No”, but your child may not be ready for the responsibility quite yet. Waiting a little longer allows time to learn manage spending better and will lead to later financial success.
Read all fine print before applying for any secured card. Any deposit you make initially may be overshadowed by fees, resulting in a low credit limit.
You should never pay a fee to obtain a credit card unless you are obtaining one that is secured. Most credit card companies do not require any upfront fees. In addition, avoid paying someone to get a card for you. As long as your credit is good, you can get a card by yourself.
If one card has a lower interest rate, use it to pay off the debt on a different card. Even if interest rates are not appreciably better, some credit cards offer rewards with a value toward vacation travel and hotels. Do the math carefully, as any mistakes could cost you.
Most bank cards come with a pre-set limit on the amount of money you are able to spend. Using your credit card just for financial emergencies will help you avoid exceeding your limit. Also try to avoid maxing your charge cards out, as this will put a serious ding in your credit report, and you won’t have the credit in an emergency.
People typically receive dozens of credit card promotional letters everyday in their mail. It can be frustrating trying to sort through these offers. If you know what you are doing, it is easy to figure out credit cards. Apply what you’ve learned from this article, and make wiser decisions going forward.