When you open your wallet to pay for gas, your choices are usually cash, debit, or credit
Cash means running inside the store, and waiting in line. Debit can mean triggering ridiculous banks fees. Using your credit card can mean an interest free loan until the bill arrives, making it a common choice. Read on, to learn some ideas you can use to make sure that your credit cards stay a friendly part of your life.
It is a smart idea to have a couple of credit cards. This will assist you in raising your credit rating if you pay all balances in full monthly. However, if you open more than three, it may not look good to a lender when they pull your credit bureau report.
Tell the credit card company if you are facing a difficult financial situation
The company may adjust your payment plan so that you will not have to miss a payment. Doing so means they may not report your late payments.
Look into whether a balance transfer will benefit you. Yes, balance transfers can be very tempting. The rates and deferred interest often offered by credit card companies are typically substantial. But if it is a large sum of money you are considering transferring, then the high interest rate normally tacked onto the back end of the transfer may mean that you actually pay more over time than if you had kept your balance where it was. Do the math before jumping in.
Avoid closing accounts. Although it could seem like a smart thing to do for improving your credit score, closing accounts could actually harm your score. The reason is due to the fact that you’re subtracting from the credit amount that you have. This lowers your ratio between your credit and the amount you owe.
Find out if the interest rate on a new card is the regular rate, or if it is offered as part of a promotion. Many people do not realize that the rate that they see at first is promotional, and that the real interest rate may be a significant amount more than that.
Do not give your card information over the phone unless you know and trust the company involved
The same goes for using credit online. Be weary if you’re receiving unsolicited offers that require you to give out your credit card number. Many unscrupulous scammers make attempts to get your credit card information. Be thorough and protect your card number.
To avoid excessive fees, always read the fine print of any credit card offer you are considering. Many offers come with a low introductory APR and can be quite enticing. However, further review of the fine print may reveal that that low rate will be increased to a less than appealing rate in as little as 6 months or a year.
If you use your credit cards to pay for gas, do not run too close to your spending limit if you have a purchase coming up. Many gas stations will put a $75 hold on your credit card for a few days, eating up your available space, meaning you can not charge other things.
Sign up for alerts from your credit card company
Most companies offer them and they can be conveniently sent via email or text. These alerts let you know when you are nearing your credit card limit, when you are close to the due date for your payment or even, when suspected fraudulent activities have occurred. They can really help you to manage your credit effectively.
If you are hit with a credit card fee that is unavoidable, perhaps due to an emergency situation, call your credit card company. Sometimes they will waive these fees for certain users. The key is to only ask if you are a person who always pays their bill on time and only needs a one time exception, otherwise your request will be turned down.
Compare the features of each credit card before you choose one
Some credit cards offer cash back on purchases and others, have great rewards programs. For example, if you travel a great deal, you may want a credit card that gives you points for each purchase towards airline miles or hotel discounts.
Have the contact information and your card numbers written down somewhere you can find easily. Store the information securely. In the event that you lose your wallet or purse, you will be able to quickly contact your credit card issuers to notify them of the situation. Reporting lost or stolen credit cards immediately is key if you wish to avoid responsibility for charges fraudulently incurred.
As was mentioned earlier in the article, the credit cards in your wallet are probably a common choice for you to use for payments, for products, and services. Apply what you have learned from this article, to make sure that your credit cards stay a convenience, and not a stressful hassle in your life.