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09-14-2012 08:54 AM
Share for those digging their way out (too much debt, too low of a score) of their situation. Post your best tips for management your credit cards/money.
09-14-2012 09:48 AM
1. Don't overspend
2. Pay on time
3. Never, ever be late
09-14-2012 09:59 AM
Pay more than your minimum payment everytime you get paid if you can afford it, can't be late.
09-14-2012 10:02 AM
09-14-2012 10:08 AM
honestly, don't be a slave to your CC. They are meant to enjoy! Pay way before due date, pay in full if possible if not, pay above the minimum. If you are rebuilding, watch where your money goes for a month or two to keep track of WHAT you are actually spending on. Oh and my favorite: get credit when you DONT need it. (this was some of the best advice besides low utilization I found on the boards!)
09-14-2012 11:52 AM
Take the time to create a budget and stick to it. Include paying debt into your budget. It's the only way to work yourself out. I made alot more money 10 years aago than I do today, but never budgeted. Today, making less money, my financial life is much healthier.
09-14-2012 12:22 PM - edited 09-14-2012 12:22 PM
Treat them like gold.
2. never pay late, NEVER.
3. If you must pay over time, pay it off as fast as you can.
4. Spend within your means/ don't overspend as other member stated.
09-14-2012 12:41 PM
I schedule all payments to be paid by due date through online bill pay with my bank. That way I am never late and I can still make additional payments when I want.
09-14-2012 12:54 PM
These are just things that I do and are by no means best for everyone and their situations:
Aside from the basics listed above, learn about what each of your cards can do for you. Know which cards earn points/rewards and use it to your benefit. For example: I have a Discover card that I can earn 5% cash back on for certain purchases. Rather than pay for say my gas with my debit card, I use my Discover card then transfer that sum of money to my savings account to use towards paying my Discover bill. You still pay the same amount that month, but you get the benefit of the 5% cash back that adds up quickly if the card is used smartly. There are other cards that offer different types of rewards programs, so it is worthwhile to do your homework and try to put together a "wallet" that ends up earning you money every month.
Another thing you can do is find an app that helps keep you updated on your credit card charges so that at a glance you can see how much you have charged on each card at any given time. The trick to this is figuring out how you think and process information and then find something that works that way. What works for one person may be greek to someone else.
If you have balances on high interest cards, look into whether or not you have other cards that have lower or 0% interest if you transfer balances (watch for transfer fees though) so that you can pay down balances quicker and for less money.
Lastly, there is so much to be said for actually writing out a monthly budget. Knowing in your head what your monthly expense are is one thing, but to put pen to paper (or fingers to keyboard) so that you can actually see the totals makes a world of difference - at least to me. Setting out your "extra" or "fun" money for the month or the pay period really helps to keep you from over spending on crap every month. When you are honest with yourself and add up how much you spend per week on extras like coffee, snacks, sodas, eating out, etc. you really start to see how much money you are wasting. Makes cutting back a little easier when you actually see the figures in print.
Hope something here is helpful to you. Good luck.