How do you use your credit cards? Do you consider yourself to be completely responsible or completely lost when it comes to credit usage? No matter how responsible you feel, there is always a bit more that you can learn, and this article will provide you with great credit card tips!
Lots of cards give large bonuses simply for signing up. However, that incredibly fine print listed in your contract could come back to bite you hard. Make sure you read and understand the terms and conditions of any bonuses. A common requirement is to spend enough on the card within a short period of time. Only apply for the card if you expect to meet the level of spending needed to get the bonus.
Whenever you can manage it, you should pay the full balance on your credit cards every month. You should view credit cards as a convenience form of payment, and budget the full payoff each month. Using credit helps the credit score, and when you pay the balance completely you ensure that you avoid finance charges.
Emergency, business or travel purposes, is all that a credit card should really be used for. You want to keep credit open for the times when you need it most, not when purchasing luxury items. You never know when an emergency will crop up, so it is best that you are prepared.
Never give out your credit card number to anyone, unless you are the person that has initiated the transaction. If someone calls you on the phone asking for your card number in order to pay for anything, you should ask them to give you a way to contact them, so that you can arrange the payment at a better time.
Do not use one credit card to pay off the amount owed on another until you check and see which one has the lowest rate. While this is never considered the best thing to do financially, you can occasionally do this to make sure you are not risking getting further into debt.
Keep an eye on your credit cards even if you don’t use them very often. If your identity is stolen, and you do not regularly monitor your credit card balances, you may not be aware of this. Check your balances at least once a month. If you see any unauthorized uses, report them to your card issuer immediately.
When you are using your credit card at an ATM make sure that you swipe it and return it to a safe place as quickly as possible. There are many people that will look over your shoulder to try to see the information on the card and use it for fraudulent purposes.
When looking for a new card, find one that has low interest and fees. Given the sheer number of cards on the market that do not have annual fees, acquiring cards that do require such fees is unnecessary.
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.
If you are going to make purchases over the Internet you need to make all of them with the same credit card. You do not want to use all of your cards to make online purchases because that will increase the chances of you becoming a victim of credit card fraud.
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.
Have a running list with credit card account numbers and lender’s emergency contact phone numbers. Have this information in a secure area, like a safe, and away from your actual cards. This list is going to help you if you ever get robbed and they get stolen or if you lose them somewhere along the way.
Don’t believe that any interest offered to you is concrete and will stay the same way. Credit card companies normally have several interest rates they can offer to customers. If you dislike your interest rate, get in touch with your bank and request a change.
Did these tips help you? Do you feel more prepared to use your credit cards now? Hopefully, you feel more confident and comfortable, as well as, more able to avoid the common “credit traps” that exist. This article and others like it can provide you with a wealth of useful credit card knowledge.