Use Credit to Save Money
Credit cards don’t have to lead to debt. In fact the way you handle your credit card account will go a long way toward determining how much money you lose or save in the long run. After years of courting just about anyone with a paycheck, credit card issuers are feeling the sting as more and more Americans default on their agreements. As a result consumers who are trying to make good on their promise to pay are being penalized with slashed credit limits and higher interest rates. It may be more difficult but not impossible to keep your accounts in good standing. Here are a few tried and true tips to help you manage your accounts and save money as you go.
Read The Fine Print- Many consumers do not know or understand the terms and conditions of their contract with the credit card company. This is a good example which proves what you don’t know can hurt you. Be sure to read the information on your statement each month and pay attention to inserts or attachments that accompany your statement. Not knowing the terms of your agreement does not absolve you of your financial responsibilities.
Adjust Your Spending Habits- The recession has not discriminated among classes, which means almost everyone has been effected in one way or another. It is irresponsible to continue spending money in a careless fashion and blame the credit card company for your financial woes. To better understand where your money is going, track your expenses for at least one week. By documenting each purchase made you will have a realistic idea where you can cut unnecessary expenses and save money.
Monthly Payments- Most consumers know that paying your credit card balance in full is the only way to avoid debt and save money. Unfortunately this option is not a reality for most Americans struggling with debt. If paying your balance in full is not possible you should apply as much as you can afford toward your debt each month. The longer you carry a balance the more money you will waste paying interest. Remember paying the minimum payment is a surefire way to remain in debt for years to come.
Avoid Fees- Credit card companies have created a built-in reminder that using your credit irresponsibly costs money. Late fees, over the limit fees and cash advance fees can quickly add up making it more difficult to make headway paying off your account. Fortunately most fees are completely within your control, so make it a priority to pay your bill on time, stay below your credit limit and avoid using your credit card for cash advances.
Rediscover The Benefits Of Cash- People who use their credit card as an extension of their income are often surprised how much money they are really spending. When you put the plastic away and begin paying with cash you quickly become aware of how much money you are spending. Nothing puts the breaks on a shopping spree like an empty wallet, however if you stick to a budget and only spend what you can afford you will eventually save money.
What do you do to save money?
Chatty yet again! Naturally this is weighing heavy on my mind.
What I mean by not wanting to need child support is that in the future when he decides not to pay again (assuming and praying that he starts again sometime soon) that I am not effected by it.
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