Managing Your Credit Cards – Tips To Follow

What kinds of feelings come to mind when you hear the words “credit cards?” If you are like many other Americans, you probably feel anxious and nervous when you hear these two words put together. This fear and anxiety will pass, however, as soon as you arm yourself with proper information.

Do not cut up all your cards thinking that will end your debt woes. Sometimes doing this can really backfire and make matters worse, because it lowers your available credit and increases your utilization percentage (which is ideally recommended to remain below 30% of your overall available credit line).

So instead of getting mad and destroying your credit cards, it is better to just get in the habit of paying off your full balance (or at least significantly more than the minimum) every month. Having active revolving debt will boost your credit score, and give you lower interest rates, which really helps paying down your debt.

Getting Better Credit Card Rates & Terms

The key to securing the best possible credit rates and terms, is keeping a close eye on your credit report and making changes and corrections where necessary. Consumers with better credit histories have broad access to cards with low or zero interest, cards that boast rewards programs that can be truly worthwhile, and cards that do not come with costly annual membership fees.

Mark your calendar for the day that you are expecting to receive your credit card statement. If your statement does not arrive when it is expected, be sure to contact the company as soon as possible. You must get a statement each month, carefully read through it to be sure nothing is missing ,or additional charges do not appear.

If your credit card is charging you a high rate of interest on your balance, consider transferring it to a lower interest rate card. This can save you a lot while you are working to pay down that balance. The key is to not charge any more on the old card once you have transferred your balance, or you will end up in a worse financial situation.

Know Your Rights

When it comes to credit cards, you should always know your rights. If you fall behind, know what your options are as well. If you have to speak with other departments, such as the collections department, and others, know what your rights are. You do not want to do any business without knowing all of your available options.

This Is Not Free Money

Do not go on a spending spree just because you have a new card with a zero balance available to you. This is not free money, it is money that you will eventually have to pay back and going overboard with your purchases will only end up hurting you in the long run.

Credit cards can be wonderful tools that lead to financial success, but in order for that to happen, they must be used correctly. When used correctly, it will you to avoid credit card pitfalls, and instead allow you to use your card(s) in a smart way, leading to an improved financial situation.

19 thoughts on “Managing Your Credit Cards – Tips To Follow

  1. I completely agree with everything you said. Credit Cards aren’t supposed to be scary, they are totally like an asset for financial success. I grew up believing the credit cards are bad and that I shouldn’t ever get one. Unfortunately this totally back fired when I was trying to buy a car because I had no credit score. I wish that I had read this article years ago so that I didn’t have to pay such high interest rates for my car loan.

  2. For someone like me who’s been wary about getting a credit card, this article really helps dispel the prejudice that getting a credit card can only land you in more debt. I believe the suggestions given are helpful in that we must not overspend and be wise about how we use our credit cards which could lead us to more debt or if used wisely could lead us to successful financial management. It’s wonderful to have come across such helpful suggestions.

  3. I have always wondered about the intricacies involved with owning a piece of plastic called the credit card. Now with this article, I’m able to feel more assured the next time I plan on getting one. Thanks for the post!

  4. This article is really helpful. If you really want to get a credit card, you should know the responsibilities that lie ahead when getting one. When you get one, you shouldn’t spend all the way to the point that you would max out your limit. People should know how to use credit cards wisely. Credit cards aren’t really scary if you know the consequences. It really depends on the person who is using it.

  5. Credit cards can actually make life easier if people would just know how to use it properly and responsibly. This article will actually help people who just entered the “world of using credit cards” just to be in trend, just to be cool or may be they really find it as a necessity. As stated above credit cards doesn’t equal to free money, these are actually counted as “debt”, so be responsible in using it.Having it at first may give you that feeling of being a “one day millionaire” because you get things you want, yet your wallet or cash in your wallet is still there but, beware, comes the end of the month or the deadline for the payment you’ll pay all the things you bought using your credit card “one time, big time” so say bye bye to your cash may it be your salary or you allowance. Bottom line is, yes! credit card may help at times (if you really do not have cash) with the right precautions. So might as well read this article for some tips and “LEARN TO READ”.Remember, never enter a situation you know nothing about. Thanks

  6. This is a very simple but helpful article especially to those who just had their credit cards or those who are just about to get one. I wish this article have been written long before I had a card because I had experienced acquiring high-interest rates because of my failure to follow-up on my monthly statement, which made it more difficult to pay. And yes, a credit card is not free money, because eventually you will have to pay for what you have purchased. Thank you for this wonderful article.

  7. Great tips! I agree that Consumers with good credit histories have more opportunities to get cards with low or zero interest. The best thing to have a good credit history is to really watch over your credit report and always make sure to mark your calendars for the credit card statement date and always avoid late payments and delinquencies.

  8. The two most important things highlighted here is one, the concept of revolving debt (sometimes risky, you need to be very vigilant) and second, the advice that there’s no free money in this world. It implies that credit does not mean one can go on a spending spree as the article says, it hurts in the long term. The article gives a good insight about credit cards, they are neither to be scared of, nor the one whose utility can be ignored.

  9. I have never received my credit card statement on time. So I didn’t check my statement in detail. I should call them if I don’t receive my statement on time. And, I always had the feeling that I could be paying more than what I should be paying. To avoid this, I have to keep track of the charges and cash flow and should cross check it with the credit card statement. Great awareness. Thanks for the informative article.

  10. I agree that cutting all your cards will not end your debt woes but instead will make matters worse as I have done exactly years before. I currently have no credit cards at the moment and am thinking again of securing one to ease up some of my debt woes.

  11. I’ve always been wary of credit cards ever since I’ve heard of it. But I guess looking at things that are already known in a new perspective changes that. When I finally open an account, I’ll be sure to look for the one with the best terms and rates. Also, I loved the “know your rights” section!

  12. I am about to get my very first credit card. I sure wish they had a course back in high school where they taught you these stuff. You explained your points in great detail. I now have a better understanding of what I’m about to get myself into. Thanks for the great article. You are helping pave the way for a generation of smarter, more informed credit card users.

  13. Great article Guru. Wish we had the internet in the days when they were giving away cards like crazy. Can tell you I had my share of troubles dealing with delayed payments and mounting interest rates. And it can be a killer. Greatest advice – pay in full before the due date. Useful plastic if you do that.

  14. I was having trouble getting my monthly statement on time due to some issues with my address. One quick call to the credit card company solved that issue with paperless billing. Articles like these are a great help for newbies like me!

  15. It’s good to know I’ve been doing it right this whole time, always making sure that I always pay the whole balance or significantly more than the minimum required. Good and informative article!

  16. This post is really useful, especially to people like me, who are about to get their first credit card. I’m quite scared if you’d ask me, because paying off such crazy interest rates doesn’t sound good to me. Good thing I’ve read everything here and hope I’ll remember them whenever I spend.

    1. Thanks for your comment Edelweiss. Just remember, if you pay off in full every month you won’t have to worry about any “crazy interest rates”:)

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