Research by industry super fund-owned bank ME1 found that 70% of Australian card holders have developed poor habits when it comes to credit card use. In this article, we look at five behaviours to avoid so you make the most of having a credit card (that’s if you really do need one).
Carrying ongoing card debt
Consistently carry outstanding debt, could mean you are wasting money on interest charges. If you budget for it aim to clear the balance by paying more than the monthly minimum, and to help with this stick with a low-rate credit card.
Using a card for big ticket items
ME found 31% of card holders make credit card purchases that take more than six months to pay off! This inevitably means you end up paying more for it because you will end up paying interest. For big ticket buys do your best to save for it (if not all then at least some of it) or consider taking out a personal loan if the interest rate is lower.
Withdrawing cash from an ATM with a credit card
If you regularly use your credit card as a source of cash, it’s seriously time to rethink your budget because you are charged a ‘cash advance’ fee which make it very expensive way of getting ready cash. If you’re finding there’s too much ‘fortnight’ at the end of your money, we could help. Vision Super’s financial planners can assist you at any stage in your life, just call 1300 300 820.
Having savings while owing money on your card
It’s always sensible to have rainy day money, but if you have outstanding credit card debt, you’ll pay a higher rate on your credit card than you’ll earn on savings. It can make better financial sense to put savings to work by paying off your credit card, and reducing the amount of interest you pay.
Using a balance transfer but holding onto an old card
Don’t forget to close your old credit card account if you use a balance transfer deal. That way you’ll save on annual card fees, and you won’t be tempted to reload the old card with fresh purchases.