Are you going to apply for a credit card? Hold up a second.
When applying for a credit card for the first time, there are a few things important to know, such as how credit actually works, what to do if you don’t have a solid credit history, and what to watch out for when selecting a card.
The more you discover about what it means to have a credit card, the surer you’ll be whether you need one or not. Luckily, if you found this article, we’ll go over some of the most important things to know related to these amazing rectangular objects.
So, are you prepared to find out more? Let’s just dive right in:
Learn the fundamentals\
So what’s the one main thing that makes credit cards so interesting and alluring to use, folks?
Well, when you buy something on credit, you pretty much get it right away, which is awesome, but you end up with debt because you’ve used money that isn’t yours. So, eventually, you’ll have to pay that amount back.
We can all agree that credit cards offer convenience, but like any other debt, there are repercussions for not paying on time. Credit cards are vastly different from other forms of electronic payment, such as debit cards and mobile payment apps, because they allow users to temporarily utilize money that isn’t theirs as if it were their own.
It’s important to note that it’s not unusual for a person’s credit limit (the maximum amount they may spend with their card) to exceed the amount of money they really have on hand. Because of this, using credit is a two-edged sword. A good idea is to take a peek at this page to find out more interesting info https://www.forbes.com/advisor/credit-cards/what-to-know-before-applying-for-your-first-credit-card/.
Your credit history
“Does my credit history matter at all?” YES!
Building a positive credit history takes time and is based on a borrower’s track record of making timely payments. A credit score is a three-digit number that summarizes the information contained in a credit report, which is maintained by credit agencies. A higher credit score indicates greater credit.
Do you know what else? Credit card companies consider these and other signs of creditworthiness when deciding whether or not to extend credit. For those who have yet to establish a credit history, the fact that using a credit card is the easiest and most common way to do it can feel like a catch-22.
Don’t make impulsive purchases
You should never charge anything on your credit card that you won’t pay off in full when the statement comes in the mail.
Using your credit card to make a purchase that you know you cannot realistically afford is a big no-no when using credit cards.
You’re going to have to pay for that thing at some point in the future, and when the payment arrives, it is going to make your finances for the next month more difficult to manage. You might be getting a wonderful item right now, but you’re going to make things very difficult for yourself in the next month if you keep this up. You can find out more info here.
Instead of using your credit card to buy things way out of your price range, think of it as a convenient tool that not only helps you keep your identity and bank account protected but also provides you with some benefits.
So, hold your horses, and don’t make the purchase you have in mind if the necessary funds are not now available in the checking account associated with your name. Wait.
Pay your bill in full
Always pay the total amount due on your statement each month. If you’re unable to do so, you should refrain from using the card until the balance has been paid in full.
The most effective method for keeping your balance on a credit card under control is to pay off the entire amount due on the card each and every time the statement is received.
This prevents additional interest charges from being added to your bill, which is something you definitely do not want to happen. When you go overboard with your speeding, it will be impossible for you to pay the entire bill when it arrives, and this is when the problems will start to arise for you.
If you ever find yourself in a position where you’re unable to pay the full balance on your credit card bill, put the card away for a couple of months and live off of the money in your bank account. It’s not that hard, folks! That way, your mistakes won’t just keep piling up on top of one another.
Keep the card paid off
Credit card rewards are more important than the interest rate if you pay off your balance each month.
If it isn’t obvious already, the most important rule of credit cards is to never charge more than you can afford to repay in full each month. To do otherwise would be a very expensive mistake. Yikes!
However, suppose you do follow that rule to the bone. If you do, it won’t make much of a difference to you what the card’s real interest rate is. Consider the perks you’ll receive for using the card instead.
Choose a card with rewards
Depending on how you usually spend your money, søk for a credit card that will provide you with valuable rewards.
Oh, and don’t sweat it because there won’t be any changes in your spending habits when using a decent rewards card. Instead, it should be compensatory for the things you’re already doing. The benefits you receive have to be adaptable and practical.
A rewards rate on a credit card is of little use if the incentives it gives can’t be used in a way that is both simple and beneficial to you.
Listen up, first-time cardholders! For those of you who aren’t looking to trick the system, it’s better to start with a card that gives you either straight cash back or discounts at stores you already shop at frequently.
Figure out your worst spending habits
A credit card can come in handy in helping you figure out your poor spending choices. Amazing, right?
The credit card statement is more than simply a monthly reminder of your financial habits and a potential indicator of identity theft. Our advice to you is to inspect your monthly credit card statement in its entirety and keep track of everything that looks like an unnecessary expense.
But, what makes a purchase unnecessary, you might wonder? Well, if a purchase doesn’t pretty much solve a pressing problem or bring you lasting satisfaction, it was likely wasted money. Think about these spending habits, and then think about them some more. They can be really eye-opening.
We also want you to know that when reviewing your bill, keep an eye out for any charges that you don’t recognize. They may indicate that your identity has been stolen and someone is using your credit card without your permission. On, and you should get in touch with your credit card company ASAP if you discover any problems.
Search for a co-signer
If your card application is denied, don’t freak out. It’s also possible to apply for a card through other means.
The first thing you may do is try to find a co-signer, who can be a parent or a very close friend or relative, for a credit card. By co-signing, they are essentially promising to cover any outstanding balance on the card if you are unable to make your payments. But, be sure to be responsible with your payments because otherwise, you’ll just be dangling debt off on them.