Advice for consumers is a business in and of itself these days. Credit cards are often a focus for much of this business. This piece will give you some education in your use of credit cards and issue avoidance. Read on to find out how to use your credit as a tool for opening financial doors, without getting into debt.
When you are unable to pay off one of your credit cards, then the best policy is to contact the credit card company. Letting it just go to collections is bad for your credit score. You will find that most companies will let you pay it off in smaller amounts, as long as you don’t keep avoiding them.
Be sure to limit the number of credit cards you hold. Having too many credit cards with balances can do a lot of harm to your credit. Many people think they would only be given the amount of credit that is based on their earnings, but this is not true.
Don’t fall for the introductory rates on credit cards when opening a new one. Be sure to ask the creditor what the rate will go up to after, the introductory rate expires. Sometimes, the APR can go up to 20-30% on some cards, an interest rate you definitely don’t want to be paying once your introductory rate goes away.
If you have poor credit and want to repair it, consider a pre-paid credit card. This type of credit card can usually be found at your local bank. You can only use the money that you have loaded onto the card, but it is used as a real credit card, with payments and statements. By making regular payments, you will be repairing your credit and raising your credit score.
If you have not established a credit history and are interested in obtaining a credit card, it may help to obtain a co-signer. A friend that you trust, a parent, sibling or anyone else with established credit can be a co-signer. Your co-signer will be legally obligated to make payments on your balance if you either do not or cannot make a payment. This is a good method for improving and building your credit.
When you first receive your credit cards, be sure to sign them right away. People who avoid this step leave themselves open to identity theft if the cards should be stolen. Many merchants require the cashier to verify the signature matches so that you can keep your card safer.
The best credit cards come along with having great credit. Credit card companies always use credit scores to determine what kinds of cards they will offer consumers. Low interest credit cards, cash back incentives, and best points options are offered to those with great credit scores.
If you have any credit cards that you have not used in the past six months, then it would probably be a good idea to close out those accounts. If a thief gets his hands on them, you may not notice for a while, because you are not likely to go looking at the balance to those credit cards.
One important tip for all credit card users is to make a budget. Having a budget is a great way to figure out whether or not you can afford to buy something. If you can’t afford it, charging something to your credit card is just a recipe for disaster.
It is good credit card practice to pay your full balance at the end of each month. This will force you to charge only what you can afford, and reduces the amount of interest you carry from month to month which can add up to some major savings down the line.
There are many different kinds of credit cards that each come with their own pros and cons. Before you settle on a bank or specific credit card to use, be sure to understand all of the fine print and hidden fees related to the different credit cards you have available to you.
Look into whether a balance transfer will benefit you. Yes, balance transfers can be very tempting. The rates and deferred interest often offered by credit card companies are typically substantial. But if it is a large sum of money you are considering transferring, then the high interest rate normally tacked onto the back end of the transfer may mean that you actually pay more over time than if you had kept your balance where it was. Do the math before jumping in.
As you are no doubt aware, it is all too easy to find yourself in over your head regarding credit cards. If you spend too much on too many cards, you will be in a tight spot. This article should prepare you for avoiding these types of situations.