Are you having a rough go of getting your credit card balances under wraps? You don’t have to be ashamed about it: there are hundreds of thousands of Americans in the exact same situation as you. Once you have a plan of attack for bettering your spending habits, it will become even more possible to get your debts into a comfortable and manageable state. Read on for some very helpful tips to sink your teeth into that will stop you from making any further major credit card mistakes!
Paying Just the Minimum Balance Is Not the Best Idea
One of the most major credit card mistakes people tend to make is believing that paying the minimum balance on their credit cards makes sense. If you make it a point to only pay the minimum expected, it will take you forever to pay off your cards. Your credit card company is also tacking on a suffocating interest rate every month that will only keep your balance growing higher. You should always send the most that you can afford to spend: it will look good in the eyes of the credit bureaus and you’ll erase that debt much faster. Whenever you can, you should avoid spending in other areas to dedicate more funds to your credit card balances.
Don’t Get In the Habit of Using Your Credit Card for Everyday Purchases
This is one of the major credit card mistakes that should be rather easy to avoid. Those things that you buy on a very regular basis should be bought with your monthly income. Not paying for your groceries or cell phone bill with your credit card will make it easier to curb your spending. Just like anything else you buy with your credit card, those small purchases like milk and eggs will turn into big purchases if you don’t pay those bills of swiftly enough because those interest rates certainly have teeth.
Those Credit Card “Rewards” Aren’t Really All That they’re cracked up To Be
As long as you have the income to pay off your credit card balances every month, this one of the major credit card mistakes that’s easy to avoid! Those rewards that you can earn for using your credit card in certain places can be very valuable, but if you can’t pay down the balances you incur, the interest that you’ll be upcharged will likely outweigh the proposed value of any reward.
Do Whatever You Can To Get Around Taking Out A Cash Advance.
Credit card companies often send out checks to cardholders in the mail known as cash advances. Taking this cash advance from your card provider is another big one of many major credit card mistakes. The moment you receive the advance, you’ll begin accruing interest on it. They usually also slap a 2% to 4% fee on top of the advance for convenience. Unless you’re in very desperate times, a cash advance is the last thing you want to get: especially if it’s coming from your credit card provider.
Don’t Use Your Credit Card To Cover Medical Expenses Ever!
Probably one of the biggest major credit card mistakes out there is the one that tells us to pay medical statements with our credit cards. Medical expenses are already typically high as it is, so you know that the interest rates associated with the purchases will be to. Why add to your bills and stress level with even higher bills that you truly can’t handle? The first thing you should do is try and negotiate with your healthcare provider to see if you can make a more doable payment arrangement. Make sure that you’ve thoroughly reviewed your bills to make sure you understand each and every charge you’re seeing.
Don’t Ever Just Ignore Your Bills
Ignoring those irritating credit card bills may seem like a wonderful alternative at first, but you’ll be walking into one of the biggest major credit card mistakes there is out there. While you’re busy acting as if those bills don’t exist, the interest that you have to pay on them will only continue to grow in magnitude. Even just missing a payment or two could have your interest growing at unfathomable rates. Instead of turning a blind eye, you should contact your card providers directly to develop a payment plan. You might be able to get your interest rate lowered or they might even erase some of your debt altogether.
The process of cleaning up your credit card debt can take a very long time. You have to learn to practice patience and practicality. If you use credit cards correctly, they can be very helpful and convenient tools, but if you take their power on before you’re primed for the responsibilities they bring, you might come to regret getting one in the first place. Be smart and put your financial wellbeing at the forefront of your mind!