There are many different kinds of credit cards available to consumers. You’ve probably seen plenty of advertising for cards with a variety of perks, like airline miles or cash back. You should also know that there’s a lot of fine print to go with these perks. You’re probably not sure which credit card is right for you. This article can help take the guesswork out of picking a credit card.
Don’t use cards to buy something that you cannot afford. It is acceptable to use your credit to make purchases that you will be able to pay off later, but do not make large purchases that could put you in a financial bind.
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.
To help you get the maximum value from your credit card, choose a card which provides rewards based on the amount of money you spend. Many credit card rewards programs will give you up to two percent of your spending back as rewards which can make your purchases much more economical.
To make the best decision regarding the best credit card for you, compare what the interest rate is amongst several credit card options. If a card has a high interest rate, it means that you will pay a higher interest expense on your card’s unpaid balance, which can be a real burden on your wallet.
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.
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.
You need to pay more than the minimum payment each month. If you aren’t paying more than the minimum payment you will never be able to pay down your credit card debt. If you have an emergency, then you could end up using all your available credit. So, each month try to send in a little extra money in order to pay down the debt.
Keep a current list of credit card numbers and company contacts. Place it in a secure place, like a deposit box, away from your other credit cards. You’ll be grateful for this list in the event that your cards get lost or stolen.
Watch rewards programs. These programs are quite popular with credit cards. You can earn things like cash back, airline miles, or other incentives just for using your credit card. A reward is a nice addition if you’re already planning on using the card, but it may tempt you into charging more than you usually would just to get those bigger rewards.
Most analysts state that a credit limit should be no greater than 75% of a monthly salary. If you owe more than that, you need to work hard to pay it off quickly. This becomes critical because the interest charges will continue to push your balances higher and higher.
A great way to save money on credit cards is to spend the time necessary to comparison shop for cards that offer the most advantageous terms. If you have a decent credit history, it is highly likely that you can obtain cards with no annual fee, low interest rates and perhaps, even incentives such as airline miles.
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.
Prior to applying for a credit card, try to build your credit up at least six months in advance. Then, be sure to take a look at your credit report. By doing this, you are more likely to get approved for the credit card and get a higher credit limit, as well.
A little research will go a long way in finding the right credit card to meet your needs. With what you’ve learned, you should no longer intimidated by that fine print or mystified by that interest rate. Now that you understand what to look for, you won’t have any regrets when you sign that application.