You have to know a few things prior to using a credit card. If you’re not using it right, then you may find yourself in financial trouble. In this article, you will learn a few tips about using credit cards and how you can get the most out of yours.
Keep track of how much money you are spending when using a credit card. Small, incidental purchases can add up quickly, and it is important to know how much you have spend on them, so you can understand how much you owe. You can keep track with a check register, spreadsheet program, or even with an online option offered by many credit card companies.
Be sure that you only use your credit card on a secure server, when making purchases online to keep your credit safe. When you input your credit card information on servers that are not secure, you are allowing any hacker to access your information. To be safe, be sure that the website starts with the “https” in its url.
Take advantage of the fact that you can get a free credit report yearly from three separate agencies. Make sure to get all three of them, so that you can be sure there is nothing going on with your credit cards that you may have missed. There may be something reflected on one that was not on the others.
Credit cards should always be kept below a specific amount. This total depends on the amount of income your family has, but most experts agree that you should not be using more than ten percent of your cards total at any time. This helps insure you don’t get in over your head.
Before you decide on a new credit card, be careful to read the fine print. Credit card companies have been in business for many years now, and know of ways to make more money at your expense. Be sure to read the contract in full, before signing to be sure that you are not agreeing to something that will harm you in the future.
Keep track of your credit score if you would like to get a good credit card. Your credit score is directly proportional to the level of credit you will be offered by card companies. You must carry great credit to take advantage of the lower rates, cash back offers or points programs that are promoted by the card companies.
Never keep a written copy of your password or pin number anywhere. You must remember the number so that others can’t access your account. Keeping your card and the PIN in the same location is an open invitation to thieves and fraudulent people.
It is good credit card practice to pay your full balance at the end of each month. This will force you to charge only what you can afford, and reduces the amount of interest you carry from month to month which can add up to some major savings down the line.
You may want to consider using layaway, instead of credit cards during the holiday season. Credit cards traditionally, will cause you to incur a higher expense than layaway fees. This way, you will only spend what you can actually afford during the holidays. Making interest payments over a year on your holiday shopping will end up costing you far more than you may realize.
Watch rewards programs. These programs are quite popular with credit cards. You can earn things like cash back, airline miles, or other incentives just for using your credit card. A reward is a nice addition if you’re already planning on using the card, but it may tempt you into charging more than you usually would just to get those bigger rewards.
Make sure you save your statements. Before you file them away, pay close attention to what is on them as well. If you see a charge that shouldn’t be on there, dispute the charge. All credit card companies have dispute procedures in place to assist you with fraudulent charges that may occur.
Try not to close your accounts. This may seem like a smart thing to do when trying to raise a credit score, but it actually can damage the score. The fewer accounts you have open, the less total credit you have available, which means you will owe more as a proportion of your credit limit.
It is very important that you save your credit card receipts. You need to compare them with your monthly statement. Companies do make mistakes and sometimes, you get charged for things you did not purchase. So make sure you promptly report any discrepancies to the company that issued the card.
As you can see, with the proper research, you can get the most out of your credit cards. Apply the tips you have just read, so that you can use a credit card responsibly. Don’t ruin your credit score by not using this advice and you can have a better experience with them.