If you have never owned a credit card before, you may not be aware of the advantages it contains. A credit card can be used as a alternative form of payment in many locations, even online. In addition to this, it can be used to build a person’s credit score. If these advantages appeal to you, then continue reading for more information on credit cards and how to use them.
Don’t pay any fees upfront when you are getting a credit card. The legitimate card issuers will not ask for any money up front, unless you’re getting a secured credit card. When you are applying for a secured card, be sure to find out how the deposit is going to be used.
An important aspect of smart credit card usage is to pay the entire outstanding balance, each and every month, whenever possible. By keeping your usage percentage low, you will help keep your overall credit score high, as well as, keep a substantial amount of available credit open for use in case of emergencies.
Whenever you are considering a new credit card, you should always avoid applying for credit cards that have high interest rates. While interest rates compounded annually may not seem all that much, it is important to note that this interest can add up, and add up fast. Make sure you get a card with reasonable interest rates.
Be careful when you use a credit card on the Internet. Before entering card information online, ensure you’re using a secure site. When a website is secure, your card’s information is as well. Be very careful when replying to any emails you receive that ask for personal information: you should call the company or go to their website and do not reply to those emails.
Avoid closing accounts. Closing an account can hurt your credit score instead of helping. When you close an account, your available credit is decreased and the ratio between it and what is owed decreases.
If you go to make a purchase with your credit card and you are told that there will a surcharge for using that payment method, you can refuse to pay it and demand they accept your purchase. Many credit card companies do not allow merchants to impose fees, so you should check out the policies of your card company.
Check with your credit card company, to learn if you can set up, and automatic payment each month. Many companies will allow you to automatically pay the full amount, minimum payment, or set amount out of your checking account each month. This will ensure that your payment is always made on time.
Use a credit card that offers rewards. Not every credit card company offers rewards, so you need to choose wisely. Reward points can be earned on every purchase, or for making purchases in certain categories. There are many different rewards including air miles, cash back or merchandise. Be wary though because some of these cards charge a fee.
Shop different credit cards before applying to find out the perks each offers. Some offer roadside assistance, while others offer airline perks, like free baggage check. Some will also offer buyer protections, above and beyond what a store offers. Depending on your buying habits, one credit card may offer perks that fit you best.
Be aware that you can still have a credit card, even if your credit is not up to par. There are basically two choices to pick from. You could either get yourself a secured card or sign up to be an authorized user on the credit card of a family member or partner.
If you are getting rid of an old credit card, cut up the credit card through the account number. This is especially important, if you are cutting up an expired card and your replacement card has the same account number. As an added security step, consider throwing away the pieces in different trash bags, so that thieves can’t piece the card back together as easily.
If you decide to close a credit card account, properly dispose of your card. Do not just leave it lying around or let your children use it as a toy. If the card falls into the wrong hands, someone could reactivate the account and leave you responsible for unauthorized charges.
If you owe money to your credit card company and you cannot afford to pay it, contact your company. You may be able to set up a hardship plan until you are able to pay the money back. This way, you can avoid getting into debt and ruining your credit.
Now that you are aware of how beneficial a credit card can be, it’s time to start looking at some credit cards. Take the information from this article and put it to good use, so that you can apply for a credit card and start making purchases.