When it comes to building up your credit score, one of the most important tools you could own is a credit card. These small pieces of plastic that fit nicely in our wallets will help you improve your financial freedom. But without proper management, credit cards can be a serious burden. Today, we are going to learn some tips that will help protect your credit score and get the most out of your cards. So, if you are having trouble managing your cards, you might want to pay close attention to the information below.
Keep Your Credit Utilization Low
Using your credit card will build up your credit over time. But remember not to overdo it. By keeping your credit utilization low, it will send a signal to the credit bureau that you’re correctly managing your debt. In turn, you will see a boost in your score. Many finical managers will suggest that their clients keep their balance usage under 30%. This percentage, however, is not a rule set in stone. For more information on the 30% rule, please visit this link.
Always Pay Your Cards on Time
While this may seem obvious, some people tend to forget their due dates. Paying your credit card bills on time is very important. Being a few days late can end up costing you big. Not only will you have to pay a large late fee, your credit score will take a major hit as well. To avoid this, sign up for automatic reoccurring payments. But remember to keep enough money in your bank account to cover your bills.
Get the Most Out of Your Cards
When signing up for a new credit card, choose one that offers some type of reward. Whether it be 1% cash back or air miles, these extra incentives can really add up. Over time you will be able to enjoy these rewards and it doesn’t cost you a single cent to sign up for these programs. Please visit this website to check out some more helpful credit card management tips.
Avoid Cards with Yearly Fees
In the past, many credit card companies charged annual fees. These fees were a common practice and avoiding them was difficult. But in today’s credit card market, consumers have a wide range of cards to choose from that don’t require these fees. In order to avoid spending unnecessary money, make sure the card you’re signing up for doesn’t have an annual usage fee.
Keep an Eye Out for Fraud
With identity theft on the rise, it’s a wise idea to keep close tabs on your credit card balances. At the end of each day, make sure to log in to your credit card accounts and check for any recent activity. This will help you quickly catch a problem and resolve it before it becomes bigger. Additionally, you should sign up for alerts. Each time your credit balance changes you will receive a message in your email or on your phone.
Ask for a Lower APR
If you are stuck with a high APR, chances are you can get it lowered. With just one simple call to your credit card company, you can often bring your APR down by 5% or more. But you will need to be diligent about paying your bill on time before making the call.
The tips you have learned above can greatly improve your credit score. If credit cards are properly managed, they can be wonderful tools. Remember that paying your cards on time each month and keeping your balance down will help grow your score. By following these Credit Card Management tips, you will be on your way to a brighter financial future.