Here are some useful tips on using credit cards. Whether you shop online, by telephone or by mail, a credit card can make buying many things much easier; but when you use a credit card, it’s important to keep track of your spending.
Incidental and impulse purchases add up, and each one you make with a credit card is a separate loan. When the bill comes, you have to pay what you owe. Owing more than you can afford to repay can damage your credit rating.
Keeping good records can prevent a lot of headaches, especially if there are inaccuracies on your monthly statement. If you notice a problem, promptly report it to the company that issued the card. Usually the instructions for disputing a charge are on your monthly statement.
If you order by mail, by telephone or online, keep copies and printouts with details about the transaction. These details should include the company’s name, address and telephone number; the date of your order; a copy of the order form you sent to the company or a list of the stock codes of the items ordered; the order confirmation code; the ad or catalog from which you ordered.
Finally, if you have a credit card, take the following precautions:
- Never lend it to anyone.
- Never sign a blank charge slip. Draw lines through blank spaces on charge slips above the total so the amount can’t be changed.
- Never put your account number on the outside of an envelope or on a postcard.
- Always be cautious about disclosing your account number on the telephone unless you know the person you’re dealing with represents a reputable company.
- Always carry only the cards you anticipate using to prevent the possible loss or theft of all your cards or identification.
- Always report lost or stolen credit cards to the card issuers as soon as possible.
About the author
John Mussi is the founder of Direct Online Loans who help UK homeowners find the best available loans via the www.directonlineloans.co.uk website.