Getting a Credit Card Early Can Save You Money Later On

/ BY / Credit 101

Since the implementation of the Credit Card Accountability, Responsibility, and Disclosure (CARD) Act on May 22, 2009, it has become more challenging for young adults and young college students to qualify for a student credit card, or any card at all. The CARD Act excludes anyone under the age of 21 from being issued a credit card. To read more about the CARD Act and its effect on young adults, go to Official White House Website. If you are a young adult or college student, building your credit early can help you qualify for lower interest rates when they really count—like when you finance a car or your first home. It can also help you find lower insurance rates, rent an apartment, or land your first job...

Minimum Payments Are Not Your Friend

/ BY / Credit 101

With so many wonderful things to spend money on, it's tempting to pay just the minimum payment due on your credit card statement each month. But think again—those small payments are costing you big money in interest charges. When your monthly bill arrives, it's not immediately apparent that big money is involved. With a minimum payment of around $50, it seems impossible that paying such a small amount on such a relatively low balance could have much effect on your finances. But let's take a look at exactly how much paying just the minimum payment is costing you in the long run: Let's say you have a $2,500 balance on a credit card with a 15% interest rate. Let's also assume...

Credit Card Warning Signs - How to Tell You're Headed for Trouble

/ BY / Credit 101

Credit cards can add flexibility to budgets and give us the freedom to do anything from rent a car to make a large purchase. Used properly, they are a fantastic resource. But they can turn on us in a moment if not handled properly. Luckily, there are easy-to-recognize warning signs that, when heeded, keep us out of trouble. It’s incredibly easy to max out all of your credit cards. When a financial crisis arises unexpectedly, credit cards are the easiest place to find needed funds. Although the initial crisis disappears, the debt does not. Credit card dependence grows as quickly as the rising monthly payments. Victims of this monetary trap find their credit cards over the limit and payment...

Five Ways to Improve Your Credit Rating

/ BY / Credit 101

Do your New Year's resolutions include improving your credit score? A low credit score makes borrowing money and using credit cards more expensive. Banks and lending companies see you as a bigger risk, so you end up paying higher interest on loans and on credit card debt. If the difficult economy of the past few years has caused your credit score to plummet, this year could be a good time to send it upwards again. Here are some tips you can use to boost your scores: Check your credit report for errors. Under federal law, you're entitled every 12 months to request a free credit report from each of the major credit reporting agencies (Equifax, Experian and TransUnion)...


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