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5 Ways to Reduce Your Credit Card Debts

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Credit cards make shopping less taxing. It is popular for a lot of people. More and more individuals use a credit card in paying all their expenses- from basic commodities to leisure. However, others see it as nothing but pure evil. Why? It can lead you to undisciplined spending and huge debts. Credit cards indeed allow you to buy whatever you want. Understanding its basics helps you avoid the common mistakes that most people do.

What Do You Need to Know About Credit Cards?

It is not for everyone.

Credit cards can be dangerous in the absence of self- control. It makes you personally responsible for every purchase you made. So, if you think that you don’t have what it takes to own one, better get rid of credit cards before it’s too late. Use cash in your purchases instead.

When you use credit cards, you loan bank’s money to pay for the things you shop.

As expected, you acknowledge the fact that such money comes with an interest. As a credit cardholder, you are expected to repay the amount you loaned on a specific date. This is where problems arise. You will destroy your financial future if you fail to set payment on your outstanding credit card balance.  

What are the Ways to Pay Credit Card Debts?

If you are confronted with your credit card debts, don’t think that this is the end of the world. A lot of people were trapped in this mess as well. Below are some ways that you can do to put an end to this problem.

  • Pay your purchases using one credit card.

Start paying off balances by using one credit card for your purchases. It allows you to trim down your debts in months. If your goal is to improve your credit score, choose the card that you regularly use. Reducing card utilization rate by 20%. Self- control helps.

  • Make payments twice a month for credit card balances.

Paying the balance earlier reduces its interest. Regardless of how tight your budget is, make sure to set aside one-whole month payment on the second week of the month. Also, set payment of the same amount by the end of the month. You will pay the entire balance in months.

  • Negotiate a lower interest rate.

If your credit score is 730 or more, you have a greater chance to work on a lower interest rate for your credit card balance. A reduction of .1 or .2% of the actual interest rate makes a big annual saving.

  • Transfer your credit card balance to another company.

Though this idea helps pay off your debts, it should be dealt with caution. If you think that you can pay the balance within the agreed payment date, you are one step closer to your goal of zero debt. However, if you are hesitant of your capacity to meet the payment deadline, consider the deal off. Failure to pay the interest rate will end you up owing more to the company.

As you take advantage of this payment option, refrain from using you’re your credit card. New purchases entail higher interest rates.

  • Try peer-to-peer lending.

You can borrow as much as $25,000 if you have a good credit score and a stable source of income to pay for the money you loaned. Simply go to websites that offer products and goods you would like to buy. Then, get a loan at a fixed interest rate. This allows you to make purchases without using your credit card.

Like any other tool, credit cards can hit your finances badly.

But then, there is no need to worry because you can always get help. The above-mentioned ways to pay your debts have saved many credit card users all over the country. So, the moment you settled your balance, consider it a lesson to be learned.

Don’t get stunned with the comfort that these cards provide you.

Self- control is a must.

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Business

3 Things to Know About Credit Card Processing

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For most people, credit card processing can be overwhelming. Aside from being expensive, it is confusing too. But then, this has been a necessary evil among business owners. Without it, they will be left behind.

Getting a credit card does not have to be a bad experience at all. Knowing what is going on and what you are supposed to pay to make it less taxing than what others thought it was. Knowing the options available and the processes you are going to go through make the entire credit card processing experience more pleasing.

Get to know the three facts about credit card processing as well as every detail in between. Kindly read on.

3 Should-Know Facts about Your Credit Card Processing

Parties Involved

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The moment that your customer uses his credit card, several parties take into action namely the cardholder, the merchant, the card association, the acquiring bank, the issuing bank, and the payment processor. When the cardholder is ready to settle his purchases through a credit card, the payment processor lets him swipe the card to a point-of-sale terminal and requests him to key in the PIN. The payment processing and batching take over in an instant.

Once the credit card payment was processed, the issuing bank pays the acquiring bank (seller’s bank) for the purchases that the cardholder makes. Of course, the cardholder perfectly knows his responsibility in paying back the amount to his issuing bank along with the accruing interest. Then, the acquiring bank accepts the funds and deposits it in the seller’s account. The card association arbitrates and maintains a good network between the acquiring bank and the issuing bank.  

Card Processing Service Fee

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To avoid overpayment for your credit card transactions, it is important to check your monthly bill. The types of fees that come along with your credit card processing depend on your credit card provider. Are familiar with transactional fees, recurring fees, and one-off fees? If any of these fees does not sound familiar to you, let me go into detail.

Transactional Fees

These are mandatory fees that are linked to every transaction you do with your credit card. This varies depending on the type of card that you are using. The transactional fee is higher with business credit cards but lower with debit cards.

Recurring Fees

On the other hand, recurring fees are charges that the banks put over your account. These fees are not necessary to accept credit card payments if you are a seller. So keep close attention to fees like this. Lastly, one-off fees are those that are triggered by your actions on early termination, terminal, reprogramming, setup, address verification, payment gateway, charge back, and retrieval.

Needless to say, acquiring banks earn good profit from all these charges. As a merchant, it is a necessity to get to know these charges better and be meticulous about it.

 Security and Compliance

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Sellers have the responsibility to handle the clients’ sensitive information properly. To ensure that you are doing it the right way, PCI and EMV compliance does the trick.

PCI Compliance

When we speak of Payment Card Industry compliance, it is a set of standards that ensures appropriate data handling when accepting credit card payments. A short questionnaire must be completed by a merchant each year to stay PCI compliant. A PCI non-compliance fee is charged to those who fail to adhere to the governing laws on information confidentiality.

EMV Compliance

It makes use of a chip card technology that provides strong encryption to the cardholders’ card information every time it is used. With this kind of security, there is no way that sensitive information is pulled out for unauthorized credit card purchases.

At this point, you might have understood credit card processing better. To tell you, there are a few more things that you should know about it. You’ll learn them in the next days. Just be mindful of your credit card monthly bill from this day forward.

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Credit

Get Your Credit Score Soaring High in 5 Easy Steps

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A good credit score pays you an affordable life. 

       BRUCE McGlary

Sneaking a way towards the best credit score is everybody’s business. It is every person’s dream to be granted with fantastic loan deals and offers in the future. Unfortunately, most people undervalue the essence of a good credit score in making life more affordable and convenient for them.

A 760 credit score or above enables us to get our loans approved at its best terms. Thus, getting a faster loan approval at a low-interest rate is incredible. As a bonus, a high credit score saves us money on cell phone plans and other utilities too.  

In calculating a credit score, various factors are considered such as payment history, length of credit history, and outstanding loan balance. However, a low credit score does not mean the end of the world for us. The good news is that we can do something about it by bouncing our spending back on the right track. 

Improving a credit score cannot be done overnight. We must have the heart to get going no matter how challenging the process could be. 

5 Easy Steps to Improve Your Credit Score

Experts and credit counselors have worked hand-in-hand to list down useful steps to bump up your credit score. 

1. Know where you stand. 

It is important to get familiar with your credit risks. Be watchful of your credit score. Getting your credit score reviewed annually (at least) does not have to cost you any amount. There are plenty of third-party websites today that gives you the advantage of checking your score for free. Credit card companies have also incorporated it into your statement. Regrettably, these free credit score review services do not give you a heads-up of the risk factors that go along with your credit score. Invest a small amount of money to purchase your score along with the list of risks and areas to improve. 

2. Keep away from missed payments. 

Missed payments can stain your credit history. Here’s the catch. Lenders are hesitant to lend money to someone who has records of missed payments. One month late payment for utilities and credit card debt drags your credit score down by a hundred to three hundred points. The secret to avoid missed payment is to loan what you can pay in full and make clever spending decisions. 

3. Keep your loan balance low. 

One best way to improve your credit score is to manage your debts intelligently. Think of a strategy to keep the balance low to get rid of the high-interest rate. It is even helpful to pay more than the monthly amount that you are expected to pay. Paying twice a month does the trick too.  

4. Drop some of your credit cards off. 

The use of a credit card is far better than getting an installment loan. You can decide on how much to charge and pay with your credit cards. However, doing so might be risky; the fact that credit card companies might incur high interest on your debt. Be clever enough to spend within your means. Refrain from overspending. Lastly, cancel out those credit cards that you are not using regularly. A credit card or two is more than enough to manage your spending without messing up your finances.  

5. Be patient and consistent.

As I said earlier, improving a credit score does not happen in just a drop of a hat. You should be consistent in making on-time payment. Make it a habit.

Your credit score plays a vital role in your financial life. Though there is no specific timeline as to when to start dragging up your credit score, it is always a good idea to start earlier. The sooner, the better as they say. However, before raising your credit score, make sure that you have embraced all the challenges ahead. There is no shortcut- that’s for sure.

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Credit

5 Useful Tips To Use Your Credit Card Abroad

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Traveling internationally is one hell of an adventure. Experiencing different cultures, food, and sights is truly a great experience of a lifetime. And with those experiences comes expenses.

To anyone who had experience traveling outside your own country, you for sure have different ways of spending money during your travel and for some, you may also have experienced the need for extra cash aside from the one you already have in hand. 

While you’ll always need some cash, having a credit card can significantly simplify traveling overseas. You won’t really have to deal with converting currency, which means no more worries about converting just the right amount of money, and you will automatically get one of the lowest conversion rates possible.

In this generation where people mostly have debit or credit cards, we rely on these so much nowadays and if you’re like those people who don’t want to have any cash in their pocket, using their cards has become a norm in payment transactions almost everywhere.

Before you embark on a new journey to travel overseas, it is also important to keep in mind some tips when you are using your credit card smartly overseas. 

Options

Although it’s advisable to use one card intentionally to best monitor your expenses, it is best to have at least 2 different types of credit cards or debit cards from different major networks. The top 2 highly used credit card providers are Visa and Mastercard. There are also other credit card networks you can use but it is smart to have at least 2 of them handy. It is helpful to have a back up in case one of the networks has an outage or the place you want to use your card with doesn’t accept the other provider.

Local Currency 

Some establishments will ask you if you want to pay in US dollars or in the local currency. Quick tip: Opt for the local currency because there’s a better chance of getting a better exchange rate on foreign transactions versus the vendor itself.

Foreign Transaction Fees 

It is advisable to use or have a credit card that incurs no foreign transaction fees. You can check with your provider for the terms of your card to make sure you have those options because foreign transaction fees usually adds 3%to the cost of the purchase made abroad.

Inform your Bank Ahead

 It is helpful to let your credit card company know ahead of time if you have plans to use your card abroad. In that way, you can avoid having your account flagged or blocked if they notice an activity that it was used at an unusual location. Also, this is the perfect time for you to discuss the terms you have with your bank regarding overseas transactions. 

Hold your Receipts

In the event that you may experience some unusual charges when your billing statement finally arrives, keeping your receipts will be helpful in this situation. This will support your claim when you have to dispute these charges. 

Having cash on hand is good when traveling but its still safe to have credit cards on hand. In this era, most people really rely on credit cards for payment transactions, and using them anywhere had become easier nowadays. So it is best to be prepared and have some useful tips to keep in mind for your security and worry-free vacation outside the country. 

We hope you find our tips helpful and have safe travels, everyone!

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