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6 Ways to a Healthy Relationship with Your Credit Card


on 5/4/2016

Young woman holding credit card
Having a credit card is a virtual financial necessity these days.  You need a credit card to complete many transactions and purchases.  And a credit card can be an important part of developing a good credit score.

However, your relationship with your credit card must be a healthy one – a relationship where you are in control!  Here are six tips for maintaining a happy friendship with your credit card.


1.  Quality. Not Quantity.

It’s pretty easy to apply and get approved for a credit card.  But should you jump at every card offer that comes into your mailbox or presents itself to you online?  Or should you be sure you can say, “Yes! This is the card for me!”   We think you should be selective.  Getting involved with a credit card should be considered a serious commitment.

Do some research and find a card that can provide you with the features and benefits that you want and fit your needs.  It’s also important to feel good about the company that is issuing the card because you will want to know they are going to provide quality support and service. 

Most importantly, be sure you are mature enough to handle this relationship before you jump in.  “Maturity” means that you know you are disciplined enough to avoid overspending.  If your card feels like the proverbial devil on your shoulder, it may be best to avoid having one or to get a low limit card.    
 

2.  Don’t be a Big Spender.

Let’s face it, not many of us are living like the Kardashians.  So don’t treat a credit card like your ticket to their lifestyle. 

Splurging once in a while is no big deal but life will be so much easier if you stick to buying what you can afford.  In other words, try to stick to a budget, and balance the fun with the practical needs that your credit card can cover. 

Enjoy the convenience that making purchases with a credit card offers instead of giving into the urge to buy more than you should.


3.  Start off on the Right Foot.

So what kind of relationship are you going to have with your credit card?  It’s best to make a commitment and live by it.  This means paying your bill wisely. For starters, always make at least the minimum monthly payment. Or, even better, pay off the entire balance or at least as much as you can each month. 

Remember, if you don’t pay the entire balance, your next payment will first go to paying interest on your balance.  Only whatever is left over will go toward reducing your balance.   And whatever new purchases you make get added to that remaining balance, so it’s easy to see how this can get out of control.

It can be okay to maintain a balance, but if your balance is growing closer to your credit limit every month, you could be heading for trouble. 
 

4.  Be on Time.

Are you stuck in a terrible habit of not knowing when your bills are due? Or even worse, are you paying them late? Avoid confusion and those wasteful late fees by getting to know your credit card limit and due date on an intimate basis.  Skipping payments or paying your bill late will usually cost you dearly.  It’s not worth it!  Stay on top of it and you’ll be much happier without those collection phone calls and your healthy credit score.
 

5.  Don’t be Afraid to Ask for Help.

Everyone needs help from time to time. Recognizing the need sooner than later can make a big difference. We have expert advice on hand for how to manage your credit card and get out of debt.  We hope you don’t need our help, but don’t forget it’s here if you do.
 

6.  Score Big.

A credit card can help you establish a credit score you can brag about. But how do you even build credit? It turns out you don’t just build a credit score by simply having a credit card. You need to use it and pay it off consistently to see results.
 

So go on, put yourself out there and make this relationship work! 
Learn about and apply for your
Genisys Rewards Credit Mastercard today.

 

Sources:  http://blog.creditcardflyers.com/choosing-credit-cards/must-know-tips-for-first-time-credit-card-owners

 

© Genisys Credit Union and www.genisyscu.org, 2016.  Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this site’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited.  Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Genisys Credit Union and www.genisyscu.org with appropriate and specific direction to the original content

 

© Genisys Credit Union and www.genisyscu.org, 2016.  Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this site’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited.  Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Genisys Credit Union and www.genisyscu.org with appropriate and specific direction to the original content

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