Struggling with debt from credit cards is something that almost everyone has dealt with at some point. Whether you are attempting to improve your credit in general, or remove yourself from a difficult financial situation, this article is sure to have tips that can help you out with credit cards.
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 friends with your credit card issuer. Most major credit card issuers have a Facebook page. They might offer perks for those that “friend” them. They also use the forum to address customer complaints, so it is to your advantage to add your credit card company to your friend list. This applies, even if you don’t like them very much!
If you have the money to do so, pay your entire balance on your credit statement monthly. If you pay in full now before the interest starts piling up, you can save a lot of money. By using credit and paying it off in full, you will improve your credit score and save money.
Take the time to play around with numbers. Before you go out and put a pair of fifty dollar shoes on your credit card, sit with a calculator and figure out the interest costs. It may make you second-think the idea of buying those shoes that you think you need.
If you have a credit card, add it into your monthly budget. Budget a specific amount that you are financially able to put on the card each month, and then pay that amount off at the end of the month. Try not to let your credit card balance ever get above that amount. This is a great way to always pay your credit cards off in full, allowing you to build a great credit score.
Make sure you are consistently using your card. You do not have to use it frequently, but you should at least be using it once a month. While the goal is to keep the balance low, it only helps your credit report if you keep the balance low, while using it consistently at the same time.
Live by a zero balance goal, or if you can’t reach zero balance monthly, then maintain the lowest balances you can. Credit card debt can quickly spiral out of control, so go into your credit relationship with the goal to always pay off your bill every month. This is especially important if your cards have high interest rates that can really rack up over time.
Find a credit card that rewards you for your spending. Spend money on the card that you would need to spend anyway, such as gas, groceries and even, utility bills. Pay this card off each month as you would those bills, but you get to keep the rewards as a bonus.
If you ever have a charge on your card that is an error on the credit card company’s behalf, you can get the charges taken off. The way you do this is by sending them the date of the bill and what the charge is. You are protected from these things by the Fair Credit Billing Act.
Make sure your balance is manageable. If you charge more without paying off your balance, you risk getting into major debt. Interest makes your balance grow, which can make it difficult to get it caught up. Just paying your minimum due means you will be paying off the cards for many months or years, depending on your balance.
If you cannot pay your entire credit card bill each month, you should definitely keep your available credit limit above 50% after each billing cycle. Having a good credit to debt ratio is an important part of your credit score. Make sure that your credit card is not constantly near its limit.
Negotiate for a better interest rate, especially if you have been with the company for a long time. Your credit card provider may be open to negotiation if you want to secure a lower rate. You may receive a reduced APR if you request it and have been a dependable customer.
Limit the number of active credit cards you have, in order to avoid getting into debt. It’s much easier to manage your finances with fewer cards and to limit excessive spending. Ignore all the offers you might be receiving, tempting you into getting more cards and letting your spending get too far out of control.
If have a missing or stolen credit card, report it as soon as possible to the card issuers. Several companies have a 24-hour service and toll free number on their statement for this reason. To protect yourself, after calling, write a letter to every issuer. The letter should provide your card’s number, the date it went missing, and the date it was reported.
Do not be afraid to pay off a credit card with another credit card, if the paying card has better fees and interest rates. Even if interest rates are similar, other cards might give perks or points towards airline tickets. Do the math carefully, as any mistakes could cost you.
Decide on the specific use of a credit card before deciding to get one. Applying for a credit card just to have one is a very bad idea. Be sure that you have a need for the credit card and will be able to make the payments on it before you get one.
After reading this article, you should feel better prepared to deal with all types of credit card situations. When you properly inform yourself, you don’t need to fear credit any longer. Credit is a tool, not a prison, and it should be used in just such a way at all times.