Credit cards hold tremendous power. Your use of them, proper or otherwise, can mean having breathing room, in case of an emergency, positive impact on your credit scores and history, and the possibility of perks that enhance your lifestyle. Keep reading to learn some great ideas on how to harness the power of credit cards in your life.
A cosigner can help you obtain a credit card if you have yet to establish credit. You can have a friend, parent, sibling or anyone else that is willing to help you and has an established line of credit. They must be willing to sign stating they will pay the balance due on the card if you do not pay it. This is a good method for improving and building your credit.
In order to keep a good credit rating, be sure to pay your bills on time. Avoid interest charges by picking a card that has a grace period. Then you can pay the entire balance that is due each month. If you cannot pay the full amount, pick a card that has the lowest interest rate available.
If you have a credit card account and do not want it to be shut down, make sure to use it. Credit card companies are closing credit card accounts for non-usage at an increasing rate. This is because they view those accounts to be lacking in profit, and therefore, not worth retaining. If you don’t want your account to be closed, use it for small purchases, at least once every three months.
Do not apply for any credit cards by mail if your mailbox is not lockable. Many credit card thieves say they got their cards from unsecured mailboxes.
To make sure you select an appropriate credit card based on your needs, determine what you would like to use your credit card rewards for. Many credit cards offer different rewards programs such as those that give discounts on travel, groceries, gas or electronics so pick a card that suits you best!
It is best to stay away from charging holiday gifts and other holiday-related expenditures. If you can’t afford it, either save to buy what you want or just buy less-expensive gifts. Your best friends and relatives will understand that you are on a budget. You can always ask ahead of time for a limit on gift amounts or draw names. The bonus is that you won’t be spending the next year paying for this year’s Christmas!
Always make certain you are monitoring your credit score. Most credit cards consider a good credit score to be anything above 700. Wisely use your credit in order to maintain this level or to reach this level if you aren’t this high yet. Once your score hits 700 or above, you will get all the best offers of credit with the lowest interest rates.
Students who have credit cards, should be particularly careful of what they use it for. Most students do not have a large monthly income, so it is important to spend their money carefully. Charge something on a credit card if, you are totally sure you will be able to pay your bill at the end of the month.
The key to using a credit card correctly lies in proper repayment. Every time that you don’t repay the balance on a credit card account, your bill increases. This means that a $10 purchase can quickly turn into a $20 purchase all due to interest! Learn how to pay it off every month.
Do not use your credit cards to pay for gas, clothes or groceries. You will find that some gas stations will charge more for the gas, if you choose to pay with a credit card. It’s also not a good idea to use cards for these items because these items are things you need often. Using your cards to pay for them can get you into a bad habit.
Keep one low-limit card in your wallet for emergency expenses only. All other cards should be kept at home, to avoid impulse buys that you can’t really afford. If you need a card for a large purchase, you will have to knowingly get it from your home and take it with you. This will give you extra time to think about what you are buying.
To avoid interest charges, don’t treat your credit card as you would an ATM card. Don’t get in the habit of charging every single item that you buy. Doing so, will only pile on charges to your bill, you may get an unpleasant surprise, when you receive that monthly credit card bill.
As was stated earlier, the credit cards in your wallet represent considerable power in your life. They can mean having a fallback cushion in case of emergency, the ability to boost your credit rating and the chance to rack up rewards that make your life easier. Apply what you have learned in this article to maximize your potential benefits.