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Credit Advice

Since the invention of the very handy credit card, shopping has become an even bigger pleasure, being able to buy things at hand when you don’t have cash for it or when you simply just want to spoil someone close to you. Being able to buy that object of affection for your loved one, or that new designer couch, even those pink boots, would make anyone smile, but can we really afford the things we buy so lavishly with our credit cards? Sure, these little plastic wonders make our lives very easy and convenient at times, but does it really provide ease of mind at the end of the month when the bill arrives at our door? If you stay smart about having and using your credit card, there is hope yet for paying the credit card bill and more peaceful nights of sleep. Here are a few pointers to get control of your credit card and debt:

Stay in control

By regularly checking your financial bank statements, you can keep an eye on things and budget for those irregular expenses, such as an unforeseen doctor’s visit. Also try and use direct debits, which usually give you a small discount on your purchases. If debts build up quickly, seek help from a financial consultant.

Budget

You may ask ‘Why budget’? This gives you a constant and efficient picture of your position financially. This method of keeping track of your money helps to prevent compulsive money spending and splurges on unnecessary items. And it will surely reduce unwanted stress levels by knowing how much money goes where each month. Also, don’t be scared to barter a deal on a purchase. Always ask yourself if the product you want to buy is something you really need or just something you really want.

Evaluate your spending standards

Set some financial goals up for yourself and your family, including things like a pension fund and a savings account for your children. All goals need good planning and by prioritizing them according to your own needs, you will be able to establish the time needed to reach them. Open a Separate saving account where you can deposit the required monthly allowance for bills that do not occur on a regular monthly basis, or even use it for a long overdue holiday savings plan.

Also be aware of companies who claim to ‘clean up’ your credit history. You can do this yourself, for free.

Having a good credit card score, is always a good thing. We all know it is very easy to misuse a credit card and end up having a bad credit history. The better your credit history, the easier it will be to obtain a credit card. Ranging from ‘excellent credit’ to ‘seriously poor credit’, you would preferably like to find yourself in the excellent or good credit history category. So why not save a little, so you don’t have to lay awake at night in your old age, worrying about debt. A credit card can bring much relief, but like with all things, it just shouldn’t be misused.

Credit in Minutes Tip #1

Stay on top of your credit report. Most credit reports contain errors. Make sure you check your credit report every year (you get one free credit report every twelve months) and if there are errors make sure to challenge them with the reporting credit agency. Credit agencies are required to investigate each and every challenge that gets reported.

Credit in Minutes Tip #2

Just because you qualify for all of those credit cards does not mean you should get them. A person with too many credit cards looks sketchy in the eyes of a potential creditor. Think of it this way: if a person is financially stable does he or she need ten different credit cards? Wouldn’t just one or two suffice?

Credit in Minutes Tip #3

The best way to raise your credit score is to make all of your payments on time. It sounds too simple to be true, but that’s all there really is to it. Staying out of debt and/or making all of your debt payments on time will keep your score up where it should be.

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