Archive for July 9th, 2015

Maximize Your Credit Card

Thursday, July 9th, 2015

This is precisely the reason why you should try your best to make the most of its perks. You may not realize it, but there are a number of things that you can do to maximize your card’s use.

This article presents a couple of cool tips every cardholder needs to remember.

Make best use of your Billing Cycle

The way you pay your monthly bills is crucial to maximizing your card. For instance, if you settle your dues punctually and in full, then you will be able to avoid being charged with interest. This is probably the best way to use your card. This is because you are technically getting a free loan from your card provider.

Of course, there are still a couple of tricks you can do to step things up. Consider this: if you make a charge a day before your statement is closed, then that you will have around 20-25 days to settle that charge. However, making that same charge a day after the statement is closed will give you a total of at least 55 days to pay that charge. This is because that charge will be transferred to the next billing cycle.

Another important trick you need to remember is that some card providers actually allow their users to move back their due dates, thus extending their payment cycles. This can certainly help if you find yourself in a financial jam. However, you need to keep in mind that you won’t be able to this repeatedly.

Always ask to be reconsidered

If your initial credit card application was rejected, you should never hesitate to ask for reconsideration. There is always the possibility that your credit worthiness was not assessed correctly. Keep in mind that the process itself is not perfect, so mistakes are bound to happen.

Just give your card provider a quick call. Explain to them why you deserve to be approved for that particular card. If you are convincing enough, the person on the other end of the line might just give you that card you want.

Threaten a Chargeback

Asking for your money back from a merchant is often a futile effort. Fortunately, credit card users have a slight edge over people who pay with cash. As a credit cardholder, you are entitled to a chargeback option.

The chargeback option is an important trick all card owners need to remember. All you have to do is call the merchant, and ask to speak to a supervisor. Inform them that you want your money back. However, if your initial attempts at a refund are rejected, then tell them that you intend to ask for a chargeback from your card provider.

It is virtually guaranteed that the supervisor will change their mind once you threaten them with this. This is because a chargeback means increased merchant fees. They would rather give you back your money than be charged any additional fees.

Make the Most out your Reward Cards

As you may have already noticed, many reward cards rely on gimmicks to make you spend more. Do not fall for this trap. Overspending is the among worst things you can do with your credit card. Instead, you should try using these cards creatively. Earn reward points the smart way.

For instance, if you want to qualify for a sign up bonus, then try using your credit card to purchase gift cards. Just make sure that you will be using these in the future. That beings said, buy them from retailers that you visit often.

Finance Shopping for Used Cars

Thursday, July 9th, 2015

While it’s possible to save money going this route, most used car buyers still need to consider financing. Shop around for your loan to make sure the terms are advantageous for you.

Shop Lenders

You have several different lender options when you want to finance a pre-owned vehicle. You can deal directly with a dealership or you can hammer out a loan with a credit union or traditional bank. A loan from a dealership might seem tempting because it’s so simple to orchestrate, but it’s likely that you will pay for this convenience with higher interest rates. A bank or a credit union will probably offer you more attractive rates and terms than a dealership. One option is to negotiate your best deal with a bank or credit union and then take these terms to a dealership to see if the dealer will match them.

Shop Loans Quickly

As you navigate the loan shopping process, don’t take your time. Optimally, you should complete this process within only one to two weeks. The reason for the fast-paced shopping is because every time you apply for financing, your credit score receives a small hit. These soft hits are nominal and they don’t stay on your credit report for long, but they can have an impact. The impact could be higher depending on the number of inquiries that hit your report. Keeping the time period relatively short will lessen the total effect on your credit score.

Check Current Rates

Interest rates will have a significant effect on the overall feasibility of used cars financing. Lenders set interest rates according to borrowers’ credit scores, so the better your score, the better your interest rate should be. Your score is determined by your payment history, your current debt load, and the time period of your total credit history.

Loan Term

The term of a loan has a big impact on the total price paid for used cars. A loan over a longer period of time will require the borrower to pay more in interest over the term of the financing. If you have the choice between a shorter and a longer term, you will probably notice that the longer term has lower monthly payments. While this can be tempting for your month-to-month budgeting, remember that you will be paying more overall for this longer period. Shortening the financing period will result in higher monthly payments, but you’ll pay less in interest to the lender.

Check Lenders

Before making a final decision, do your homework to check into the reputation of a company. Both the federal and state governments regulate lenders to ensure that they adhere to laws and regulations. Call your attorney general’s office to inquire about a specific company. The Better Business Bureau also has information about businesses that will enable you to know whether the company is reputable.

Shopping for financing can be as challenging as shopping for used cars, but the time is well spent to ensure that you get a fair deal.