Charge cards can be useful when buying something, because you don’t have to pay for it instantly. Before applying for new bank cards and making any purchases you should research as much as you can so that you do not end up in debt. Here are some ways to use your charge cards wisely so that you avoid a lot of trouble down the road.
Never use a credit card for purchases that are beyond your means. While it is okay to use your card for something that you know you will be able to afford to pay in the near future, you should avoid impulse and high-ticket purchases until you can save enough money to truly afford them.
Only open a credit card at a retail store if you shop there often. Even applying for a card with the store will reflect badly on your credit score if you’re not accepted, and there’s no sense in applying if you’re not a regular shopper. If you’re declined by a few retail chains, for example, you can actually hurt your credit rating in the long term.
Use your credit cards wisely. Don’t buy everything you want, limit yourself to what is financially responsible. When you use the card, you have to know when and how you are going to pay the debt down before you swipe, so that you do not carry a balance. When you have a balance on the card, it is too easy for the debt to grow and this makes it more difficult to clear completely.
Before beginning to use a new credit card, you should carefully review the terms stated in the credit card agreement. A lot of credit card places think of your first purchase as your agreement to their terms. The fine print may be small; however, you still need to read it all.
Be vigilant when looking over any conditions and terms. It is not uncommon for issuers to change terms and conditions with relative frequency. The most significant changes may be couched in legal terminology. Make sure you read everything so you know what to expect as far as rates and fees are concerned.
Keep a list of credit account numbers and emergency contact numbers for the card lender. Keep your list in a safe place that is separate from your cards. You’ll be grateful for this list in the event that your cards get lost or stolen.
It is highly recommended that your credit card limits remain less than 75% of the total money you make every month. If your limit is higher than this, try to pay it off quickly. That is simply due to the fact that you will end up paying an extremely large amount of interest.
If you are looking for a secure card, try to stay away from a prepaid card. These are, in fact, debit cards, and big credit bureaus take no notice of them. Many prepaid cards charge extra fees and they are really just a checking account. Instead of using a debit, your best bet is to put some money into an account and get yourself a secured card to use. This will help you beef up your credit score as an added bonus.
Be sure to keep track of credit card spending every month. Remember that incidental and impulse buys will add up quickly. It is very easy to charge more to your credit card than you can pay off monthly.
If you do not fully trust and know the company that you are communicating with over the Internet or phone, do not provide them with your numbers from your credit card. Be especially suspicious of unsolicited offers that ask for your information. There are a lot of scams that would love to have that card number. Be aware and keep yourself protected.
Charge cards could be helpful if they’re used properly. By following some basic credit rules presented in the article, you should be able to use credit cards for purchases and maintain excellent credit without going into debt.