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.
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.
Make sure that you make your payments on time when you have a credit card. The extra fees are where the credit card companies get you. It is very important to make sure you pay on time to avoid those costly fees. This will also reflect positively on your credit report.
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.
Make sure you know the current interest rate of the credit card you are applying for. If you are applying for a new credit card, make sure that you are aware of what the rate is on that card. Choosing a card with a high interest rate will cost you dearly if you carry a balance. You may find it very hard to pay off your debt each month when high interest charges are added to your balance.
You want to not only avoid late payment fees, but you also want to avoid the fees tied to going over the limit of your account. These can both amount to significant sums, and can also do damage to your credit score. Keep an eye on your finances, and don’t go over your limits.
Always sign the back of any new credit card as soon as you receive them. A lot of people forget to sign the back of their credit cards and this can have bad consequences if a credit card is stolen. The signature on the back offers protection against fraudulent purchases because the cashier verifies that the customer’s signature matches the signature on the card.
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.
Keep track of what you are purchasing with your card, much like you would keep a checkbook register of the checks that you write. It is far too easy to spend spend spend, and not realize just how much you have racked up over a short period of time.
Everyone has experienced this. You open your mail to find another credit card offer. You might be looking for a new card, but then again, you might not. Always shred any credit card offer that comes through the mail. These solicitations often contain sensitive personal information, so it is a mistake to toss them away without ripping them up.
Maintain a list of all your credit card numbers and the emergency phone numbers for your lenders. Stash this is a safe place like a safe, and keep it separate from the credit cards. The list is useful as a way to quickly contact lenders in case of a lost or stolen card.
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.
If you go to make a purchase with your credit card and you are told that there will a surcharge for using that payment method, you can refuse to pay it and demand they accept your purchase. Many credit card companies do not allow merchants to impose fees, so you should check out the policies of your card company.
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.