Guidelines for Using Your Credit Card
- August 29, 2014
Credit cards are that light you see while you’re in a dark tunnel, however, if they aren’t used properly, can send you even deeper in the tunnel. The best way to prevent future credit card debt is to not even have a credit card at all, but if you already have one or planning to apply for one, here are some rules that you should follow to ensure that you use it correctly.
The first things you should know about your card is that you can always negotiate and ask for help from your credit card company. A good tip to know is that your interest rate is never a set number that doesn’t have the chance to change, because it can. If you have been a customer for a long time, made all your payments in full, and have a good record of paying off your balance, then it’s worth giving them a call and seeing if you are due for a reward. However, if you are having the opposite problem and having trouble paying off your credit card, you can ask if they can make the interest rates a little bit smaller for you so you can catch up.
You also have to make sure that you are getting a credit card for the right reasons. If you think that it is worth continuously using your credit card just to earn reward points, think again. The points can be used for some nice items but it shouldn’t cause you to over spend with your card because then you have the risk of not being able to pay it off, thus spending a lot more money than you can afford. You also don’t want to sign up for every credit card that offers you different deals on selected items. Do your best to pick one type of credit card and reap the benefits from that instead of trying to figure out how you’re going to pay back the money you spent with the others.
Now that you have a little more information on your card, it’s significant that you understand how to handle your bill. Do your best to keep it balanced at $0 because that way you don’t have to worry about how much money you’ll be paying back in interest later. The worst habit that you can get into is continuously paying the minimum payment because you’re slowly paying more than you should each month. However, make sure you don’t miss or skip a payment . It may not seem like a big deal to you, but it will be with your card company. If you have multiple cards, set reminders on your phone so you always know when to pay.
The last guidelines are what you should do in the case of an emergency. If you really need cash, do your best to not take it from your credit card . The reason being is that not only will you get charged the interest you do if you don’t pay it back in full, you will also get charged an additional percentage for doing so. Avoid the extra costs and fees of getting money out from your credit card and find another way. And remember that if your credit card is ever lost, stolen, or misused, report it immediately and don’t hesitate to do so. Having a credit card can be a very useful thing as long as you use it suitably.