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Fort Worth Star-Telegram: Credit Card Cautions

July 20, 2008

AFFIL appeared in this article by Dave Lieber on July 20, 2008:

[…]But until any changes come, it’s wise to watch out for pitfalls on your own. Americans for Fairness in Lending says you should:

  • Make sure your credit card bill is due the same date each month.
  • Watch for early due dates that make the bill due a few days after you receive it.
  • Watch for weekend due dates because if your payment arrives the following Monday, you will probably face a late fee.
  • Never go over your credit limit because if you do, you might face an extra charge and your interest rate could go up.
  • Avoid missing a payment on one card; it might affect the interest rate on an unrelated card.
  • Never assume you get to keep the low teaser rate for the entire promotional period.
  • Understand that if your card offers two rates (one for purchases and one for cash balances), your payments will always go toward paying off the lower-rate charges before the higher ones.
  • Avoid add-on charges like “credit protection” because the fees are probably more than the minimum payment the service would cover if you became sick or lost your job.

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