Making Credit Cards Work For You
Credit cards scare many people, especially around Christmas time and January, when credit card bills tend to be huge. Credit cards are useful devices, though, that when used properly can help you enjoy life and can help you build a good credit rating. The first step of using credit cards properly is to understand what they are. Credit cards are a form of personal credit which let you charge money to your credit card account. If you don't pay off your credit card balance each month in full, you will be charged interest, just as on a loan. There are plenty of good things about credit cards. They let you pay for things over the phone and over the internet. They let you rent cars and do other transactions that are impossible without a credit card, in many cases. They can be used in emergencies and they can help you develop a good credit rating if they are used properly. They can even act as I.D. when you need it. The major problems with credit cards is that they can get you into debt very quickly and can help you ruin your credit rating when used improperly. They can be hard to pay off because many credit cards have very high interest rates compared to other forms of credit. Credit cards can also be used against you by identity thieves who can use your credit card to make purchases of their own. Obviously, some basis precautions are needed if you are going to have credit cards. You should shop around for credit cards that have the lowest rates possible and no annual fees to make repayment easy. You should have no more than two or three cards and should pay them off every month to prevent interest fees. Most customers of credit cards get into trouble when they use their credit cards to pay for things they cannot afford. Remember: credit cards are a loan and not a form of income. Do not charge something just because you want it and can't afford it. Be sure to check your balances each month and call your credit card company about any charges you do not recognize. Do not give your credit card number out to people who call you unsolicited and avoid writing your credit card number where others can see it. If your credit cards are stolen, be sure to report the theft right away to your credit card company so that the thieves cannot rack up large charges on your credit cards.