Categories
Credit Tips

How to Really Use Your Credit Cards

Credit cards are a double edge sword. People are addicted to the plastic crack. They buy stuff they don’t need to impress people they don’t like. Plastic money has Americans hooked. Advertisements for cards are everywhere. How bad is it? According to some statistics the average American household has over $15,000 in credit card debt.

I do not advocate that everyone should have a credit card. If you can not control your cash you definitely can not control your plastic spending. I teach Financial Peace University classes and we strictly preach debt freedom and get rid of your cards. Why? Because most people will spend when they carry a credit card. Furthermore those same people will not pay off their current charges and carry a balance. Thus putting them back into credit card debt.

There is a myth that you need credit. That is a lie. You don’t need credit to survive. It does make it easier to travel, rent cars, and book hotels. But the truth is you can do that with a debit card. The buy now pay later syndrome is why so many people are in debt. This is how people get trapped and are on the path to financial disaster.

Only The Responsible and Disciplined

I use my cards everyday. But I pay off my balance every month. Paying interest is stupid. I still think that most people should not own or use a credit card unless they are responsible and disciplined to pay it off every month. As I mentioned earlier if you can’t control your cash you will do worst with credit cards.

Hear me out again. Paying interest on things you buy is just stupid. If you can’t pay off the balance do not buy the darn thing. Do you really need it anyway? Is that new big screen necessary now. Or is happy hour that important? Think before you pull it out. Better yet leave it at home.

Not For Emergencies

They shouldn’t be used for emergencies. This is an excuse that people use because they are not financially ready. What are emergencies? The tire blew out, the air conditioner doesn’t work, kids need new shoes, you are hungry, and broke. You pull out your plastic to pay for these things and then you start to rack up that balance. You fail to pay the balance and the next month another “emergency” pops up. If you don’t have an emergency fund then you are setting yourself up for failure.

Here are 4.5 Ways to Really Use Your Credit Cards:

1. To Make That $$$

Wealthy people use cards to expand their businesses. They use it to make that $$$. Here is the key! They pay off their balances at the end of the month. They generate income with their cards and then pay it off. They hate paying interest. I am an affiliate marketer and I use my credit cards for marketing and I pay the balance every month.

There is a daily limit on your debit card usage. But not with credit cards and I don’t need limits on my spending. My credit cards help me make money. If your plastic can help you increase your income then by all means use it.

2. Not for Personal Use

If you can’t pay the balance by the end of the statement do not buy it. If you couldn’t buy it with cash then don’t get it. I know you will pay it off later. If that was true there wouldn’t be all this credit card debt floating around. Don’t even carry it with you. Just having it will give you an urge to buy stuff. Stuff is what kills people financially.

Broke people pay fees and interest rates because they can’t afford to buy with cash. That is the consequences of not having enough money to buy what you want. Fees and interest add up. You are just giving money away when you can’t pay it off before the statement date.

Here is a trick I use. I always have a monthly budget. I know where every dollar is going. I take that budget and put it on my credit card. In fact I create a positive balance on my cards. Then I stick to my budget and I am never owing a balance. Why do I do this? You will see when you read #4.

3. Your Personal Bookkeeper

This is why I use my credit cards for every purchase. I get a statement at the end of the month, quarter, and year. I see where my money went and they add graphs too. I download the statements to my Quick Books software and give the year-end statements to my tax guy. Boom accounting is done.

4. Perks, Privileges, Rewards, and Points

The icing on the cake is all the perks, privileges, rewards, and points you get by using your cards. I am a cash back guy and I will get a lot of cash back this year (which I save to my investment accounts). My business credit cards gives me all the perks. I get points, miles, discounted VIP event tickets, and I don’t have to pay exchange rate fees when I travel around the world.

I get travel insurance, rental car insurances which saves me $$$ on rental cars, and much more. Plus all this stuff is free when you pay your balance off. When you use your credit cards correctly you can cash in on the benefits

4.5 To Start Your Business

I caution you to not use your credit cards to start your business. Especially if you are a newbie with no experience in the field you are about to enter. The risk is too great. Now I used my credit cards to invest into my business. That was around $20k. That was a huge gamble. But I had 4 years of experience when I took the plunge.

I also kept my day job to help make the monthly payments. I created multiply streams of income to pay off the balances faster. Those balances are at $0 now but I had to rise, grind, and shine. It took some time but my business is successful. If your business fails you still have to pay those credit cards.

Bottomline

Most people should stay away from credit cards because they can’t control their cash and credit cards will make it worst. Only use it if you can afford to pay off the balance every month. Remember paying interest and fees is stupid. Don’t be stupid. It’s a great accounting tool and the perks are worth the discipline and responsibility.

Categories
Budgeting

Stop Alternating Credit Cards: It Can Ruin You!

Transferring the balance of a credit card to another to take advantage of promotional offers may sound as a good idea but it seldom is. Only those with a lot of discipline could take advantage of such offers and successfully benefit from them. But chances are that those with discipline hardly ever have high unpaid balances on their credit cards.

How Credit Card Debt Accumulates Even With Balance Transfers

Credit card debt will continue accumulating even if you transfer the balance from one card to another to benefit from a 0% APR promotional period. This is due to the fact that credit card companies will try to compensate the deficit by charging fees instead of interests, higher insurance charges, renovation costs, etc. Also, they usually have different rates for different purposes and thus, the 0% APR may be only for the transferred balance and not for new purchases that you make or the other way round.

If you make it a habit to pay only the minimum payment on your credit card, chances are that you’ll never be able to fully pay your credit card balance and your credit card debt will only continue to grow. Though there are solutions to this debt accumulation problem, the first step that you need to take is to acknowledge that unless you modify your behavior, credit card debt won’t be reduced.

Optimize Your Money Management

There are several techniques that you can learn that will help you manage your money more efficiently. These techniques are usually provided as part of the assistance supplied by credit counseling and debt counseling agencies and they include budgeting as the main method of maintaining a low debt exposure and a healthy financial life.

Budgeting is probably the first lesson that you will need to learn. You’ll have to train yourself in preparing spreadsheets and tables with your income and expenses as well as learn how to analyze this information. This will make it a lot easier to foresee future cash flow problems, so you won’t have to use your credit cards to solve them.

Conclusion

There are true solutions to credit card debt problems that, without doubt, do not include transferring your balance from one card to another. If you want a definite solution to your debt problems, you should better hire debt consolidation services, credit help or debt counseling so as to reduce your debt and modify your spending habits to avoid falling into the vicious circle of debt once again after obtaining some debt relief.

Categories
Student Loans

Paying for College: Student Loans or Credit Cards?

Research conducted by student loan company Sallie Mae shows that in 2010, about 5 percent of college students paid an average of more than $2,000 in tuition and other educational expenses using a credit card to avoid taking out student loans. The same study showed that 6 percent of parents used credit cards to pay an average of nearly $5,000 in educational expenses for their college children.

Is using credit cards a smart way to avoid college loan debt? Financial advisors are in near-universal agreement that the answer is no, but that isn’t stopping thousands of families from using credit cards in place of parent and student loans.

Some families might think that all debt is equal; others might think that they won’t qualify for college loans. So what advantages exactly do education loans offer over credit cards?

1) Availability

Particularly in the last few years, as credit card companies have tightened their credit requirements in a retraction of the lax lending that led to the foreclosure crisis, credit cards have become harder to qualify for, available mostly only to consumers with strong credit. Many consumers with weaker credit have had their credit lines reduced or eliminated altogether.

Federal college loans, on the other hand, are available with minimal to no credit requirements. Government-funded Perkins loans and Stafford loans are issued to students in their own name without a credit check and with no income, employment, or co-signer required.

Federal parent loans, known as PLUS loans, have no income requirements and require only that you be free of major adverse credit items – a recent bankruptcy or foreclosure, defaulted federal education loans, and delinquencies of 90 days or more.

In other words, don’t turn to credit cards simply because you think you won’t qualify for school loans. Chances are, these days, you’re more likely to qualify for a federal college loan than for a credit card.

2) Fixed Interest Rates

While most credit cards carry variable interest rates, federal student and parent loans are fixed-rate loans. With a fixed interest rate, you have the security of knowing that your student loan rate and monthly payments won’t go up even when general interest rates do.

Many credit cards will also penalize you for late or missed payments by raising your interest rate. Federal school loans keep the same rate regardless of your payment history.

3) Deferred Repayment

Repayment on both federal student loans and federal parent loans can be postponed until six months after the student leaves school (nine months for Perkins undergraduate loans).

With credit cards, however, the bill is due right away, and the interest rate on a credit card balance is generally much higher than the interest rate charged on federal school loans.

If you’re experiencing financial hardship, federal loans also offer additional payment deferment and forbearance options that can allow you to postpone making payments until you’re back on your feet.

Even most private student loans – non-federal education loans offered by banks, credit unions, and other private lenders – offer you the option to defer making payments until after graduation.

Keep in mind, however, that even while your payments are deferred, the interest on these private student loans, as well as on federal parent loans and on unsubsidized federal student loans, will continue to accrue.

If the prospect makes you nervous of having deferred college loan debt that’s slowly growing from accumulating interest charges, talk to your lender about in-school prepayment options that can allow you to pay off at least the interest each month on your school loans so your balances don’t get any larger while you’re still in school.

4) Income-Based Repayment Options

Once you do begin repaying your college loans, federal loans offer extended and income-based repayment options.

Extended repayment plans give you more time to repay, reducing the amount you have to pay each month. An income-based repayment plan scales down your monthly payments to a certain allowable percentage of your income so that your student loan payments aren’t eating up more of your budget than you can live on.

Credit cards don’t offer this kind of repayment flexibility, regardless of your employment, income, or financial situation. Your credit card will require a minimum monthly payment, and if you don’t have the resources to pay it, your credit card company can begin collection activities to try to recover the money you owe them.

5) Tax Benefits

Any interest you pay on your parent or student loan debt may be tax-deductible. (You’ll need to file a 1040A or 1040 instead of a 1040EZ in order to take the student loan interest deduction.)

In contrast, the interest on credit card purchases, even when a credit card is used for otherwise deductible educational expenses, can’t be deducted.

To verify your eligibility for any tax benefits on your college loans, consult with a tax advisor or refer to Publication 970 of the IRS, “Tax Benefits for Education,” available on the IRS website.

6) Student Loan Forgiveness Programs

Whereas the only way to escape your current credit card debt is to have it written off in a bankruptcy, several loan forgiveness programs exist that provide partial or total student loan debt relief for eligible borrowers.

Typically, these loan forgiveness programs will pay off some or all of your undergraduate and graduate school loan debt in exchange for a commitment from you to work for a certain number of years in a high-demand or underserved area.

The federal government sponsors the Public Loan Forgiveness Program, which will write off any remaining federal education loan debt you have after you’ve worked for 10 years in a public-service job.

Other federal, state, and private loan forgiveness programs will pay off federal and private student loans for a variety of professionals – veterinarians, nurses, rural doctors, and public attorneys, among others.

Ask your employer and do a Web search for student loan forgiveness programs in your area of specialty.

Categories
Student Loans

Why Student Loans are Better Than Credit Cards

You need some more money for college expenses this semester. Do you whip out a credit card to pay for your books, or do you apply for a federal or private loan? Well, consider the options –

-With a federal loan, your interest rate will be low (around 5%) and your payments will be deferred until 6-9 months after graduation.

-With a private loan, the interest rate will be slightly higher than with a federal loan but will still be lower than average. In addition, you will only need to make interest payments until after graduation.

-With a credit card, on the other hand, the interest rate can be as high as 21%. Interest begins accruing almost immediately, and you need to begin paying off the bill the next month.

This is not to say that credit cards do not have a place in your college life. It is good to have one national card (Visa, MasterCard, Discover) on hand to help you build a positive credit history and to provide security in emergencies. When you decide to apply for a card, compare annual fees, interest rates, and introductory offers. And to keep yourself out of debt, try to–

-Pay your balance each month to avoid interest charges

-Pay your bill on time to avoid late charges

-Avoid cash advances, which come with large finance charges and interest that begins accruing immediately.

This article is distributed by NextStudent. At NextStudent, we believe that getting an education is the best investment you can make, and we’re dedicated to helping you pursue your education dreams by making college funding as easy as possible. We invite you to learn more on how Student loans are better than credit cards at http://www.NextStudent.com .

Categories
PayDay Loans

Fast Payday Loans VS. Credit Cards?

When finances get tough and you need access to credit, which comes in the form credit cards and Texas payday loans, emergency situations don’t have time to wait for traditional bank loans or lenders. They often take their time running your credit and making you wait for approval. If you need fast cash and don’t have a lot of time to spare, don’t make financial decisions in haste. Take some time to consider the advantages and disadvantages of how you will acquire the money you need and then decide which financial route you will take.

The first thing you need to consider is whether or not you have a credit card and if so, does it even have any available credit? If the answer to either question is “no”, then this is not an option for your particular situation. If you are thinking about applying for a credit card to help you deal with your financial fix, keep in mind that it could take weeks to get approved and get your card in the mail. A financial emergency may not be able to afford that much waiting. Even so, you may not get approved for the amount you need, putting yourself back at square one with your cash crunch. With an overnight payday loan with Approved Money Center, you can apply online in minutes and get approved the same day. Your money will then be deposited directly into your bank account on the following business day. No waiting- no check cashing- no driving around town.

You need also consider that when you use a credit card, it may end up taking months to pay it off which will cost you a lot more than you needed in the first place. Interest charges can really add up and if you are late on your payment(s) you will be charged a substantial late fee as well. Payday loans are meant to be utilized for short-term and temporary financial times, paying them off when you get your next paycheck. You will still be charged a fee for being able to borrow but once you payoff your initial loan amount and fees, you will be free and clear of your payday loan debt. In the event that you can’t payoff your loan in full, most lenders will work with you.

In the event that you have enough credit available on your credit card, make sure you can use that card for your emergency bill. Some auto mechanics require that you pay cash for repairs. Certain vendors don’t take plastic credit because credit card companies charge business’ high usage fees. There are other circumstances that may call for cash. While you most likely can take a cash advance on your credit card, be mindful that you will pay an even higher interest rate on the money you borrow as well as any fees that may be charged for a cash advance transaction on your credit card.

A payday loan lender will never charge you more because you need the cash quickly nor should any lender ever ask you for any money up front in the form of fees or an application charge. Take a moment to work the numbers and figure out just how much it will cost you to borrow these two ways: a short-term payday loan or a credit card cash advance. Which one will you be most likely to pay off sooner? Which one will cost you more? Figure that out first and then make your decision.

While you may have a much lower interest rate on your credit card, you must be realistic about how long it will take to pay it off. If what you charge ends up being long-term debt, you can bet your going to pay quite a bit over the duration. If you can pay it off before the end of the billing cycle, you most likely won’t pay anything in interest charges or fees (except if you are charged for taking out a cash advance with your credit card). With a loan from a payday lender, you will be expected to pay back what you borrow within a couple weeks depending on your pay cycle. You’re are free and clear once you payoff your lender.

Only you know your budgets’ potential to pay back what you borrow. That goes for your financial tendencies as well. It’s best to consider how you deal with your finances and how disciplined you will be in paying back a credit card cash advance or fast cash payday loans.

Categories
Credit

Get Instantaneous Approval Credit Cards Online

You can find quite a bit of individuals who’re talking about immediate approval credit cards today. This can be since you can find a variety of companies who are claiming that they are able to provide the top ones on the web. Lots of men and women think that this indicates that they are able to immediately download a copy of a card and start utilizing it right away. Unfortunately, this is just not how it works. Whilst your application might be permitted virtually immediately, which actually means that it’s going to be approved inside of just a couple of minutes, you can’t print it out and start shopping immediately.

Though it only takes a couple of minutes to be accredited for instantaneous approval credit cards, it is going to take a handful of days prior to your card will arrive in the postal mail. So, the only real benefit here is that you will know if you’re accepted for this card inside a fairly short time. If you were to have applied for a credit card via mail, you would have waited numerous days or weeks for the bank to even run your application. This really is just one of the benefits. Another advantage is that you just can compare the price of different credit card businesses.

Of course, you will find limits to whom is eligible for these instant approval credit cards. These are in fact meant for people who have excellent credit. Nevertheless, you’ll find some methods in which you’ll be able to get around this. For instance, there may be times when the organization that you have applied to won’t be capable to access your credit history records for some reason. Sometimes the competition within the credit rating market is so high that some organizations are willing to take a risk just to obtain customers. So, even if your credit ratings record is just not all that wonderful, you may perhaps nevertheless be capable to obtain immediate approval credit cards. For these reasons, you ought to nonetheless try applying for one of these credit cards.

You will find plenty of these credit cards that you can apply for on the internet. All you need to do is go onto the World wide web and search for them. You’ll come across plenty of them to choose between. So, you seriously really should take your time to comparison shop. Visit the different web sites and look at the diverse offers that they have. This really is how you may be capable to come across the perfect deal on your next credit card.

Categories
Credit

Credit Cards – What It Means When a Credit Card Is Charged Off

You are late on a credit card. Months late. The bank which issued you the credit card is calling you every couple of days and sending you notice after notice in the mail to get you to send in a payment. But you can’t. Maybe you got laid off or lost your job. Or you have lots of other bills and you cannot afford to pay this bill.

After six months of no payments, the credit card issuer has to “clean up its books”. So it performs an accounting function and “charges off” your debt. The assumption is that, after six months of no payments, you are probably not going to pay this debt. So this loan needs to be removed from the bank’s assets. This is a charge off.

Charge off definitely does not mean that your debt has been wiped out, forgiven and no longer exists. To the contrary, it means your financial life is about to get worse.

Once the credit card issuer charges off your debt, it most likely will be transferred to a collection agency. It does not matter if the bank transferred the debt to the collection agency or sold it to the collection agency. In either case the collection agency is now in charge of your debt. Calling the bank to work something out is now a moot point. You no longer exist in the bank’s view!

The debt collector has to work within the law; the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act. The debt collector is allowed to call you and write you to collect the debt. After all, you still owe it! You can tell the collector to stop calling and stop writing. But that does not mean the collection agency is not working behind the scenes to determine if you have a paycheck or assets to go after. Your charged off debt is always valid to purse until you pay it off.

Your credit report has already taken a hit. Your credit score dropped at 30 days late, 60 days, 90 days and 120 days. Once you reach the 180 day mark and your debt is charged off, the debt becomes reported as “Charged Off.” This notation remains on your credit report for seven years from the first missed payment’s due date.

According to MyFICO.com, approximately 35% of a credit score is based upon payment history. So having a charge off appear on our credit reports has a major impact on our credit score for years and years!

If you do pay off a charged off debt, your credit report will show “Charged Off – Paid”. Obviously this looks better than just showing as charged off. But this still remains on your credit report for seven years from the first delinquency.

I hope this clears up the confusion out there about what a charged off debt is. It is not forgiven. It is still a valid debt. It can be collected. And it will impact your credit score for many years. “Charge Off” is not a pleasant phrase!

Categories
Credit

Credit Cards vs Cold Hard Cash – The Benefits

The security benefits of using credit cards have long been recognised. Even with the extra attention that is being placed on identity theft and credit card fraud these days, using your credit card is still one of the safest ways to pay for things available.

All credit card companies will provide you with an emergency number to call if your card is lost or stolen and in the vast majority of cases, any loss that is incurred by your account will be fully refunded by the card provider. This will always be the case unless you are somehow involved or to blame for the fraud, such as by giving out your security details to someone you shouldn’t have trusted. This means that even if your cards and information are stolen, you generally have nothing to worry about so long as you report the incident. Replacement cards can be sent to you very quickly.

Another benefit of credit cards over cash is that you can use them with ease abroad. They are fast becoming an internationally recognised currency. While cash will be accepted everywhere within your own country, credit cards are accepted at a huge number of locations all over the world. As soon as you step off a plane, and especially if you are travelling through a number of countries, a credit card will be an invaluable means of payment everywhere you go.

Another huge benefit of credit cards, that is really only beginning to show itself with the growth of Internet shopping, is the ease with which payments can be arranged online. There are thousands of websites now, all over the world that will conduct business with you and give you access to great prices if you have a credit card to pay for it. Gone are the days when cheques would be mailed in the post. Now, with new payment systems such as pay pal, even individuals can accept credit card payments with great ease and for very little expense. You should take care with your personal information and payment details however, and conduct business either via an intermediary such as pay pal, or only with companies you know you can trust.

The disadvantage of credit cards is that they can cost you money. You pay interest on balances that you carry from one month to another and if you do use your credit card abroad, you will have to accept additional charges from your card provider.

Categories
Credit

Credit Cards With Rewards – What's the Catch?

Go on a shopping spree

Don't have enough money to make the best out of the year-end deals in shopping malls? Not to worry! Instead of scouting for deals in snazzy shopping malls, shop through the website of your credit card. You will be surprised to find how many reward points can get you the merchandise that you may be lusting after in fantastic offers available online. Be it toys for the kids, apparel or health and beauty products you are likely to find good deals on e-commerce sites that your card issuer has tie-ups with. So instead of spending money on merchandise in retail outlets do your shopping online by making the best use of your credit cards! You can still visit the malls to experience the holiday cheer, though!

Travel guilt free this holiday season

If shopping is not your thing and you are the adventure seeking backpacking kind looking for a quick weekend escape this holiday season, check how many reward points you can redeem against air tickets. Some credit card issuers have tie-ups with airlines where you can redeem your reward points to get tickets that are significantly discounted. Some other card issuers have tie-ups with aggregator websites that let you are a winner as you may just lay your hands on the fun trip to rejuvenate yourself as the year ends.

Gift vouchers to make loved ones' smile

Are you feeling low for you have not been able to purchase gifts for your loved ones as you are seriously short on money? These gift vouchers could be the perfect gifts for the picky ones in your family who are never quite happy with the choice of others. Gift vouchers redeemed against your reward points can make you both happy!

Save up on annual fees

If none of the above are on your to- do- list and you prefer to curl up under a warm blanket with your favorite book and a warm drink during the holidays, you could still enhance your holiday cheer by redeeming your reward points to pay off your annual credit card renewal fee. This will result in savings that you may not have otherwise anticipated.

A chance to give back

Tis the season to be giving, humble and grateful. The gift of giving back is one that brings in joy unbounded, so if you are feeling magnanimous, Most card issuers allow you to donate your reward points to charities and non-profit organizations, so you can do your bit to give back to the society . What's more is that such donations are eligible for tax deductions too. we hope you will have the opportunity to spread some extra holiday cheer!

Categories
Credit

Top 5 Ways on How to Make Credit Cards Work for You

Having a credit card (or cards) may not necessarily mean you have bad debts, I’m sure in this day and age, most adults carry one – everywhere. However when used without planning or management, having just one card can mean a huge financial issue in the long run.

So here are the top 5 TIPS on how you can utilize a Credit Card to your maximum benefit so that it works for you.

1. Don’t Trust Self – Organize Direct Debits Arrangement

Once you get that “APPROVED” notification, make sure you get around setting up an account where you can easily have the Closing Balance direct debited from this account at the end of every month (or billing month). This account can simply be an everyday/ most basic account (preferably one that don’t cost a monthly fee) where you can budget your Credit Card spend to. This way, you will never miss any payment due dates, and will never set yourself in that trap of irrevocable-cycle of credit card interest repayments.

For example, when you first sign up for a credit card, most of the bank offers an “X day Interest Free Period (e.g. 55 days)”. This means you get to spend up to your limit (e.g. $1,000) for up to that 55th day. On the 56th day, you are expected to make the closing balance for that particular period. If you don’t, you get charged the Purchase Interest Rate, which can range between 14% – 25% per annum. Now, this is charged and accumulated on day 56th onwards up until you can pay that down to $0 owing balance!

So – imagine this chaos for a minute; On that card, you have $999 owing balance. You are trying to repay $100 each week. But you have ongoing monthly contract linked to this credit card each month for your phone, internet, gas; yet that apparently-not-so-amazing piece of plastic is accumulating you 20% interest on the balance every day… Are you confused yet? Well that’s how they get ya! Before you know it you are just stuck, simply stuck in this game of never ending money drainer.

The only logical way to salvage that icky situation is pretty much destroying the card, literally. So make sure you set up that Direct Debit. Pronto! Because you just can’t trust self.

Guess what, it will probably force you to make sure you are aware of your money, so you don’t go on spending on that credit card as unless you can afford to make the repayments.

2. Keep Your Limits Low

Just because you can get a credit card with a higher limit, doesn’t mean that you should take it. Sometimes you can get carried away knowing how much you have in the balance and walking in that same trap again. Don’t lead yourself into that bad habit.

Basically the way it works is, once the bank notice how good you have been with your money management – you know, with all that direct debit set up so you pay everything on time, on budget – they tend to send a “Good news!” notification – to congratulate you for the offer to be able to ‘upgrade’ to a higher limit.

Note to self, this is not really a ‘reward’, it’s simply a nudge to say “Well done on being a responsible adult. We trust that you can manage your money so here’s more money for you to spend, but remember you STILL gotta pay us back!” Get it?

3. Review Shopping Habits

Now – the fun part! Think about your shopping habits, do you go to specific grocery stores, shopping centre, cinemas or even specific fuel stations? Check if they have any Points Rewards Affiliates with the credit card company or vice versa. For example, most Credit Card Companies (Banks) have affiliate programs with Airlines – and if you use that card in certain fuel stations/ grocery stores – the points are doubled!! So if you’re anything like us jet setters, or love a free or even half-priced holiday; make sure you abide to that rewards program!

It really is a no brainer – you need to spend on those groceries every week anyway – might as well earn some travel points on them!

4. Don’t spend it on Doodads

There should be a separate account for this.

If you aren’t familiar with Robert Kiyosaki and his famous game, the Cashflow Game, then you probably don’t know the term ‘doodad’. Doodads in this instance means, gizmos/ gadgets that are nice to have but you don’t necessarily need.

Don’t get me wrong, of course you can have your ‘nice’ things – like your dream home theatre, or that plush armchair you’ve been eyeing since your cat invaded your favourite chair. But! If you manage this right, you should have a “reward/ gift” savings account set up for you, partner and/or cat, so you don’t have to dip into credit card debts.

Just don’t get into bad debts if you don’t have to.

5. Create, Maintain, Destroy

Who doesn’t love having a Credit Card? I have 2, I think my dad has about ten (10) times that, purely because he loves points hoarding. Oh plus where he lives (Indonesia), you get discounted meals (50% off each time) if you use specific credit card in that restaurant. #winning

But like I said before, once you stepped into that ‘never ending money drainer’ game (even if it is an accidental move) – you gotta let that go.

If you can’t maintain it – for some reason you are not able to make repayments on those Interest Repayments then you have to stop using the card. Ring up all the providers to cancel any bills linked to it and destroy the card, whilst you try and pay it off to zero.

Once you have paid it all off, you may reapply for another card down the track. Just so you can start from a clean slate! Yay hooray!!