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What You Didn’t Learn About Money in School

[Saturday, February 18th, 2017]

You might be surprised to learn that most people don’t learn anything about money in school. With all the history, math, and science students are required to study, one thing that gets left out is basic financial literacy.

For example, did you know that it’s not a good idea to pay just the minimum amount due on your credit card each month? If so, count yourself lucky. Many people actually don’t know that. Maybe this is your first time hearing it, as well. If so, don’t be embarrassed. You aren’t alone.

Here are just a few things that no one teaches you before college graduation…

An APR is an interest rate. The term “APR” is thrown around so much that it’s easy to assume everyone knows what it means. But in fact, many people don’t. It stands for Annual Percentage Rate, and if you have a credit card, it will have an APR. This dictates how much interest you’ll be charged if you don’t pay off your balance in full each month. So the lower, the better. You can usually get a lower APR on your credit card if you have a good credit score, so it pays to have a clean credit report.

Getting cash from a credit card is a bad idea. Speaking of APR’s, many people don’t know that when you use your credit card to get cash out at an ATM, you’ll be charged a very high one. Even if you have a low APR credit card, that low APR will usually only be for purchases, and maybe balance transfers. The cash advance APR (that’s what getting money from an ATM is, a cash advance) is always much higher. So if you have any other way to get cash, use it. Avoid using your credit card to get cash out, at all costs.

Never pay just the minimum due on your credit card. Depending on how much you owe, and on your APR, you could end up paying twice what you spent, or even more. It could take you 30 years to pay off your debt – or you might even never pay it off. Check your credit card statement for the little box that shows how long it’ll take to pay off your balance if you pay the minimum, versus if you pay a little more. That will show you how much it will cost to only pay the minimum.

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How To Get Your Credit Card Issuer To Raise Your Credit Limit
[January 16th, 2018]

It’s happened to the best of us: you want to buy something using your credit card and find you don’t have enough available credit to complete your purchase. When you want to take advantage of low interest rates, high value credit card rewards, and the chance to pay off a purchase over time, it can be frustrating to be faced with a lower credit limit than you’d like.

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Here’s How To Keep Your Credit Card Safe From Fraudulent Charges
[August 31st, 2017]

If you’ve ever gotten a call from your credit card issuer asking you about an unfamiliar charge, you know the particular sense of dread that goes through you when you think your card may have been compromised.

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3 Mistakes People Make When Applying For A Credit Card
[June 23rd, 2017]

It might not seem like applying for a new credit card is very complicated. After all, millions of people have credit cards, and most households have more than one. Still, people do make mistakes when applying for credit cards. Here are three of the most common blunders folks are prone to making when they sign up for that amazing new rewards credit card…

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