TIPS FOR MANAGING CREDIT & DEBT
Today’s credit industry is complex. Consumers have never before had so many credit and loan options.
From store credit cards to secured credit cards, retail installment contracts to personal loans, it can be very confusing to sift through all the choices and pick the right form of credit.
On top of all that, today’s consumers have to worry about bank account scams, identity theft and store credit card fraud.
Credit and debt fast facts:
- Understand the terms of your store credit card or financing agreement
- Always pay at least the minimum amount due every month
- Protect sensitive financial information from thieves and hackers
It might feel overwhelming, but with a little information and some common sense, you can avoid plenty of credit and debt pitfalls and keep your finances in great shape.
How Store Credit Cards Work: A Consumer’s Guide to Store Credit Cards
About 80% of Americans have some type of debt, and about two-thirds carry credit card debt. Store credit cards offer incredible convenience and flexibility, but they come with some potentially serious risks. It's important to understand how they work so you can avoid the pitfalls.
The most important rules are to make sure you know before you sign up for a store credit card what your annual percentage rate (APR) will be, keep your spending below your credit limit and always pay at least the minimum amount due on time.
Financing: The Good, The Bad, and The Ugly
People get financing for many different reasons, from purchasing items like furniture, electronics or a car, to paying for college, medical bills or a house. Retail installment contracts allow consumers to borrow a specific amount and pay it back over a specified period of time.
Some types of financing should be avoided.
Learn more about the various types of financing and how to improve your chances of being approved for financing.
Identity Theft & Store Credit Card Fraud Protection Tips
We hear a lot about big hacking scams in the news these days. But did you know that your own garbage can might be just as vulnerable as a company’s database? Too many people simply toss their bills and bank statements in the trash where hackers can find them—and they do!
Other common mistakes are choosing insecure passwords, not being careful at the ATM and falling for bank account scams. Remember, if it sounds too good to be true, it probably is.
Learn more about how to protect yourself against identity theft and store credit card fraud.