Credit cards can be your best friend or your worst enemy. With just a little attention or energy, you can go out on a shopping spree that ruins you financially for months or maybe even, rack enough points for airline tickets to Europe. To make the most out of your credit cards, read on.
Create a budget for your credit cards. It is a good idea to include your credit card into your budget. It is unwise to consider credit as being some additional, unrelated source of funds. Set aside money each month that you can use to pay for credit purchases. Ideally, you want this to be an amount that you can pay in full every month.
If you find that you have spent more on your credit cards than you can repay, seek help to manage your credit card debt. It is easy to get carried away, especially around the holidays, and spend more than you intended. There are many credit card consumer organizations, that can help get you back on track.
If you are having hard times financially, be sure to inform the credit card company. A credit card company may work with you to set up a payment plan you can afford. This could help because they may not end up reporting your late or missed payment to the credit agencies.
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.
When you are using your credit card at an ATM make sure that you swipe it and return it to a safe place as quickly as possible. There are many people that will look over your shoulder to try to see the information on the card and use it for fraudulent purposes.
Always know what your utilization ratio is on your credit cards. This is the amount of debt that is on the card versus your credit limit. For instance, if the limit on your card is $500 and you have a balance of $250, you are using 50% of your limit. It is recommended to keep your utilization ratio of around 30%, in order to keep your credit rating good.
Never leave blank spots when you sign retail store receipts. This includes putting lines or crosses on tip lines or other blank areas. You should also check your statements to ensure your purchases actually match the ones that are on your monthly statement.
Be aware that there are credit card scams out there as well. Many of those predatory companies prey on people that have less than stellar credit. Some fraudulent companies for example will offer credit cards for a fee. When you send in the money, they send you applications to fill out instead of a new credit card.
As was mentioned earlier, credit cards can accelerate your life. This can happen towards piles of debt or rewards that lead to dream vacations. To properly manage your credit cards, you must manage yourself and intentions towards them. Apply what you have read in this article to make the most of your cards.