Getting your first credit card is quite exciting, so it is always tempting to pick something quickly and not look at the details. However, it is important to research your first credit card and take into account some of the essentials where credit card is concerned. So, read on to learn the basics of your first credit card!
Credit Card Brands and Types
Before you get a credit card, you must be aware of several available brands and types. The most common credit card brands are Visa, MasterCard, American Express and Discover. So, if you are offered a credit card, it is likely to be any of these types.
Basic credit cards are issued by your bank, but you could also get a card from a store or retailer. Cards offered by a retailer or store can provide you with discounts and rewards for the store or retailer in question. Therefore, if you can get access to such a card from a store you visit often, be sure to consider adding it to your credit card collection.
Terms and Conditions for Credit Cards
Every credit card out there is accompanied by terms and conditions. So, before you get any credit card, it is essential to check the terms and conditions accompanying that credit card.
To check the terms and conditions of your credit card, you can request that information from the issuer. Alternatively, you can do your own research online by checking “rates and fees” and “offer terms” on an issuer’s website.
Your Credit Limit
Before you choose your first credit card, you also need to check the credit limit of your credit card. The credit limit is a term used to describe the maximum amount of money you can charge on your credit card. Therefore, your credit card limit could depend on your credit score and your overall income.
Your Credit Card Statements
When you just start out with credit cards, it is essential to keep an eye on your statements and billing cycles; these documents should be available on the same day every month (not taking into account any bank holidays).
To ensure you don’t accumulate a bad credit score, you need to make sure you make your credit card payments on time. Of course, it is also important to take a closer look at your statement, which will display charges and fees in more detail. So, getting familiar with your statement will ensure you become more skilled with your new credit card over time.
The last thing to be aware of is the APR, also known as the annual percentage rate. This percentage determined how much you will be charged in interest if you do not pay on time. So, if you want to cover yourself for all eventualities, be sure to choose a credit card supplier that can give you a lower APR.
Having your own credit card is fun, but it is also a responsibility. Therefore, always do your research and make sure you understand everything about your credit card before using it.