Having a credit card can help people all over reach lifestyle goals. You will have more financial freedom and opportunities if you have a credit card. That said, it is critical to select a credit card carefully and to use it with care. Read tips on that exact topic in this article.
Check the fine print of credit card offers. Know all of the details if you are offered a pre-approved card of if someone helps you to get a card. Always be aware of what your interest rates are, as well as the amount of time you have to pay those rates. You should be aware of any and all fees, and be aware of grace periods.
A co-signer may be an option to consider if you have no established credit. A co-signer can be a parent, sibling, trusted friend or anyone else who has already established credit. They have to be willing to state they will pay what you owe if you are unable to pay it. Many have found this to be a great help in beginning the process of building credit.
Always monitor adjustments to card terms and conditions. It is common for companies to change credit terms very often. Many times, these changes are worded in a way you may not understand. Do not skip anything when reading, and pay particular attention to fees or rate adjustments.
Do not be hesitant to inquire about getting a lower interest rate. Based on your history with your credit card company and your personal financial history, they may agree to a more favorable interest rate. It doesn’t hurt to give your company a call and ask; the worst they can do is say no.
Never let anyone borrow your bank cards. Although you might be tempted to help out a good friend, lending out your credit cards is not a good idea. Doing so can cause over-limit charges when someone else charges more to the credit card than you said he could.
Never give your credit card information out over the phone. Scammers commonly use this method for getting your number. Give out your number only if you are the one who made the call. Never give your numbers to people who may call you on the phone. It doesn’t matter who they say they are if you don’t know the person.
Avoid using your credit card to pay for meals at restaurants, as the charges sometimes take a while to appear on your credit card statement, so you could underestimate your available credit. This can cause you to spend more than you would like to because your credit card balance will appear lower than the amount you are actually responsible for.
Avoid the low interest rate or annual percentage rate hype, and focus on the charges or fees that you will face when using the credit card. Some fees that you may overlook include the annual fee, excessive late charges, cash advance fees and service charges.
Many credit card companies will present you with an unsecured card after you have proven yourself with a secured card. You may also see an increase in offers coming through the mail at this time. That is when you need to enter decision-making mode once again, to re-evaluate your financial situation and needs.
Close any credit card accounts that you no longer use. Identity theft is much more likely if you leave these unused accounts open. You may be charged yearly fees that would simply be a waste.
Use cards if you don’t want to lose them. Creditors will most likely close any accounts that are inactive. The best way to prevent this is to use all your cards regularly, at least the ones you most want to keep long-term. Just make sure that you never charge more than you can afford to pay, so as to avoid falling into debt.
Be certain to understand the terms of any secured card before accepting an offer. Often, secured credit card issuers charge hefty fees that are taken out of your deposit, and you may wind up with very little credit.
If you discover your card is missing, immediately alert your credit company. If your stolen card is used before you report it missing, you may be responsible for the charges. Once you report a card as missing, you cannot be held liable for any charges that are made to that card.
If one card has a lower interest rate, use it to pay off the debt on a different card. Even in cases where the interest rate is similar, one card may provide benefits or rewards that make usage worthwhile. It is important however, that you do the appropriate accounting first.
Keep in mind that bank cards are not a right, they are a privilege. The good credit you have can be improved by using a credit card responsibly, but your credit score can drop when you are unwise with the card. A responsible user pays bills on time and tracks his or her charges.
Credit cards offer users financial flexibility and an ability to build a good credit history. Along with the many advantages of charge cards come serious difficulties when they are abused. Reading this article gives consumers the information they need to make great credit card choices.