Credit cards are best used when you need emergency cash when money is not on hand.
These cards can also be used to build up your personal credit history. But you can run into difficulties if you use your credit card improperly.
This article will address 7 very important tips that new credit cardholders should know.
Pay Your Balance in Full Every Time.
The first rule you need to follow when you get a new credit card is to pay on time and pay it in full. By doing so, you will avoid paying late fees as well as interest rate fees. You can also keep your credit score high by using this strategy. Before any purchase, always ask yourself this question, “Will I be able to pay the amount in full or will I have to carry the balance into the following month?”
Plan Your Spending Wisely.
Personal limits should always be set to how much you will charge on your credit card each month. Financial experts will tell you that using more than 30% of available credit is a bad idea. Using less than that can help you avoid the risk of bad debt and help you maintain a high credit score.
Understand the CARD Law.
The issuer of your card will send you alerts regarding upcoming increases in rate changes. Always remember to read the alerts. The new Credit CARD Law gives you 45 day advance notice before any changes can be made. Also educate yourself regarding your rights, as well as any limitations, that fall under the new Credit CARD Law.
Be Sure To Read the Fine Print.
Each card has terms and conditions that the issuer provides and enforces. Reviewing your credit card Agreement every now and then will allow you to manage your card properly.
Understand Their Reward System.
If your card happens to have a rewards component to it, make sure that it matches your monthly spending. Every credit card company has different rules regarding their rewards program. You should know how you can earn points, what the redemption rules are and if restrictions apply.
Since the rewards cards have a higher rate of interest, and other associated fees, you need to pay your card in full each month to avoid additional fees and continue receiving rewards.
Always Choose a Low Rate Card.
Choosing a low rate credit card is always the best option. Reward cards are fantastic, but they have additional fees and higher rates than most cards. If you are not going to use your card on a regular basis, you won’t be able to collect enough points to be rewarded; therefore a low rate card may be your best option.
Make Sure You Check Your Statement.
When you receive your card statement, make sure you check it thoroughly. Your monthly credit card statements may show unusual charges which you need to dispute. If you don’t, they may continue charging you for something that you did not purchase.