Don’t Keep Your Credit Cards In Your Wallet
If you’re like many Americans, you’ve developed a bad habit of whipping out your credit card to pay for purchases and figuring out how to pay the bill later. This is not the right way to use credit. The good news is that with a little education, you can change the way you use your credit cards. Read on to find out what to do.
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.
Keep track of how much money you are spending when using a credit card. Small, incidental purchases can add up quickly, and it is important to know how much you have spend on them, so you can understand how much you owe. You can keep track with a check register, spreadsheet program, or even with an online option offered by many credit card companies.
Lots of credit cards will offer bonuses simply for signing up. Make sure that you’re fully aware of what’s in the fine print, as bonuses offered by credit card companies often have strict requirements. One of the most common terms is that you spend a set amount of money in a set period.
Create a budget that is not impossible to adhere to. You do not need to spend the entire limit on your card, even though it’s available. Calculate how much money you have to pay on your credit card bill each month and then don’t spend more than that amount on your credit card. By doing this, you can avoid paying any interest to your credit card provider.
Never pay a credit card late. Your credit card payments have a date that they are due by and ignoring them will cost you additional fees. Furthermore, it is common for card issuers to increase interest rates, which means that every expenditure will be more expensive going forward.
Be sure that you fully understand the terms of the credit card prior to signing up for it. You might find the annual fee, interest rate or other details are more costly than you originally thought. Pay very close attention to the terms to make sure you completely understand the card policy.
If you are having a problem getting a credit card, consider a secured account. A secured credit card will require you to open a savings account before a card is issued. If you ever default on a payment, the money from that account will be used to pay off the card and any late fees. This is a good way to begin establishing credit, so that you have opportunities to get better cards in the future.
It may seem unnecessary to many people, but be sure to save receipts for the purchases that you make on your credit card. Take the time each month to be sure that the receipts match up to your credit card statement. It will help you manage your charges, as well as, help you catch unjust charges.
Make sure that you watch your statements closely. If you see charges that should not be on there, or that you feel you were charged incorrectly for, call customer service. If you cannot get anywhere with customer service, ask politely to speak to the retention team, in order for you to get the assistance you need.
An important tip when it comes to smart credit card usage is, resisting the urge to use cards for cash advances. By refusing to access credit card funds at ATMs, you will be able to avoid the frequently exorbitant interest rates, and fees credit card companies often charge for such services.
A great tip for saving on today’s high gas prices is to get a reward card from the grocery store where you do business. These days, many stores have gas stations, as well and offer discounted gas prices, if you sign up to use their customer reward cards. Sometimes, you can save up to twenty cents per gallon.
Financial experts agree that you should not let your debt on a credit card go above a level equal to 75% of your salary each month. Also, you should never allow yourself to have a limit that exceeds your monthly salary. If you do, pay that card off and ask for a limit reduction. If you don’t the interest you pay could quickly get out of control.
You should ask the people at your bank if you can have an extra checkbook register, so that you can keep track of all of the purchases that you make with your credit card. Many people lose track and they assume their monthly statements are right and there is a huge chance that there may have been errors.
Avoid the temptation to take out loans on your credit cards. It may seem to be the only way to get something paid for, but you must look into other options. Many financial advisers will tell you this and there is a reason for it. It could cost you your credit ratings later.
Now that you’ve read this article, you know there’s a lot more to responsible credit card use, than just abstaining from using credit altogether. Reform your credit card habits, using the tips you have just read, so that your use of credit cards can help improve your credit scores, instead of interfering with you having good credit.