The way you handle your credit card could mean the difference between having good credit and bad credit. Check out this checklist on how to use plastic money without getting into debt trouble:
Do not charge more than what you can afford to pay off. If you want to use your credit card for a purchase, see to it that you can pay it back in full before your due date. If you have doubts, better not charge it to your card. Remember that if you choose to carry over your balance, you will be charged with interest rate and that makes your purchase a lot more expensive than its original price.
Do not use your credit cards to pay other debts. Credit cards usually have higher interest rates so it is not advisable to use them for debt repayment. If you have a deadline to beat with another creditor, consider borrowing from a friend or family. Or you can speak with your creditor and ask for an extension of your due date.
Keep track of your credit card use. How often do use your card? What type of purchases do you use it for? Surprisingly, many cardholders do not even bother to review their bills before submitting payments. If you don’t check your account regularly, there is a risk that some charges in your bill are actually unauthorized or fraudulent.
Always pay before the due date. Don’t wait until the last day before submitting your payments. Remember that if you were late in making payment even for one day, you will be charged with the APR and the late penalty. The best way to stay out of credit card debt is to be consistent with your payments.
Think ten times before making a big purchase. Do you really need to buy that item today or can you wait until you have the means to pay for it in cash? Never use your card on unplanned purchases. No matter how tempting it is to swipe the card, think about your obligations and the consequences involved with credit card debt.