There are quite a few different reasons why many people end up spending more than necessary with their credit cards. A lot of these things are entirely avoidable, so it is important for you to know about them. If you want to get rid of your debt and remain financially free, you will need to keep these things in mind going forward. A credit card can be very useful, but only if you use it responsibly.
1. Your Payments are too Low
If you are just making the minimum required payment on your credit card, you are spending more on interest than you have to. We recommend that you pay as much as possible on your credit cards so you don’t end up paying a ton of interest. The average person has an outstanding balance of over £2,000 on their credit cards, and it’s mainly because their repayments are so small. You will never get anywhere with paying off your balances unless you start paying more on a consistent basis.
2. You Forget to Make Your Payments
It can be easy to forget to pay off your credit card balance, especially if you have a lot going on in your life. Forgetting to pay is an honest mistake, but you will still be charged an additional fee by your provider. It is a good idea to set up automatic repayment with your credit cards so that you never forget. This can make a world of difference when it comes to avoiding unnecessary fees that can be fairly steep.
3. Cash Advances
Taking out cash advances with your credit cards can also cost you a ton of extra money. The last thing you want to do is take money out of an ATM with your credit card if you can help it. Fees for these cash advances can be over 3%, which must be paid on top of the interest. You should really think about whether or not you need the cash advance before doing it. There is almost always a better borrowing alternative to explore.
4. Losing Track of Your Interest Rate
You always need to know what the interest rate with your credit card is at all times. One of the big reasons that a lot of people end up deep in debt is because they lose track of their rate over time. Interest rates are subject to change, so you need to know exactly how much you are going to pay each month. By keeping up with this you will be able to avoid spiralling into a deep pit of debt that is hard to get out of.
5. Spending Irresponsibly
You need to make a point of asking yourself whether or not you really need whatever you want to use your credit card for. The last thing you want to do is be irresponsible with your credit card, because it can get you into a lot of trouble financially. You should ideally only use your card for absolute necessities when there are no other borrowing options available.
6. Taking Advance of Certain Promotional Deals
While an interest-free credit card promotion may seem like a great thing to take advantage of, you should think twice before acting. It is very important that you take the time to look into the specifics of each deal so that you know what you are getting yourself into. Using a credit card with a 0% introductory interest rate can be good for paying off older debts, but only if you change your spending habits. It won’t do you any good at all if you keep spending money recklessly.
7. Not Checking the Terms and Conditions
Whenever you are applying for a credit card, you absolutely need to read the contract before signing it. This might take a while, but it is well worth it. You never know what hidden fees you might be required to pay with a credit card. When you take the time to go through this information, you can increase your chances of not getting yourself into a bad situation later on.
Credit cards can be very expensive to use, especially for those with bad credit. The more time you take to research your credit card options, the better off you will be in the long term. Or as an alternative, consider payday loans via the likes of Emu.co.uk or similar and also make sure that you are responsible with your card so that you can stay out of debt as much as possible. Once you get deep into credit card debt, it can be a real challenge to dig your way out. By following the tips in this article, you will be able to use your credit cards without fear of falling behind. These are things that anyone with a credit card should keep in mind at all times.