Given the sheer number of options out there, picking a credit card can seem like an incredibly daunting task. There are hundreds of credit cards issued by dozens of major banks which are geared to different type of consumers. Some credit cards have low annual fees, while others offer a variety of rewards and still others provide compelling deals for those that are looking to transfer an existing credit card balance. Debt Wise Solutions has sorted through all of the major credit cards and reviewed each to help you select the card that is right for you. The truth is that if you keep a few important principles in mind, choosing a credit card doesn’t have to be stressful. We recommend that you read next few paragraphs to understand the principles surrounding credit cards, or if you feel you have a grasp on these principles, you can apply now!
Applying for a Credit Card
Today, filling out a credit card application is faster than ever before. To apply for a credit card online, you simply provide the information requested, and click the submit button. You may get an online decision in as little as a minute. In other cases, you will be notified by mail within a couple of weeks.
Know Your Credit Score Before You Apply
Knowing your credit score before you apply for a credit card is important, because particular credit cards are developed for consumers who fall within a particular credit score range. Here are the five generally accepted credit score ranges:
- Excellent Credit (750+)
- Good Credit (700-749)
- Fair Credit (650-699)
- Poor Credit (600-649)
- Bad Credit (below 599)
What this means is that someone with a credit score of 660 shouldn’t be applying for credit cards meant for people with excellent credit, because he or she will likely be declined, and if you apply for too many credit cards at the same time, your credit score could suffer. (See our books, The Credit Handbook and Your Guide to Credit, Debt and Savings).
How to Compare Credit Cards
At Debt Wise Solutions we provide you with the tools and information to make choosing and applying for a credit card as simple and easy as possible. Use our site to compare the top card offers available on the web, all with online applications. You can start by browsing the categories or the banks and card issuers. You can also use our comparison and search tools section to compare cards or to find the card with the right features and benefits for you. There are a couple of key indicators you need to pay attention to in selecting a credit card.
- APR – This stands for Annual Percentage Rate and it represents how much you’ll be charged for carrying a balance on your credit card. If you carry a balance of $100 for a year, and your interest rate is 10%, then you’ll be charged $10. These rates vary based on your credit score. The better your score, the lower your rate is likely to be.
- Fees – Credit cards may have a number of type of fees associated with the. Annual fees, late fees, over-limit fees and loyalty fees are just a few. You’ll want to make sure you understand which fees, if any, apply to the card in which you are applying.
- Rewards – There are lots of kinds of rewards credit cards available: cash back rewards, mileage rewards, travel rewards and more. It’s important to pay close attention to the terms of the rewards programs, so you can compare the accurately.
Getting Approved for a Credit Card
There are credit cards available that are the easiest to get approved or qualify for. Depending on your credit history, some consumers may find it easier than another person to get approved for credit. Individuals with an excellent credit history may get approved for virtually any credit card they apply for. While others, with not so perfect credit, may find it a little more difficult to obtain a credit card. Fortunately, there are some credit card companies out there that will approve individuals with poor or bad credit. In most cases, individuals with bad credit will have to settle for a secured credit card.
Secured Credit Cards work like this: You make a security deposit. Whatever the amount of your security deposit is will be your available credit limit. You can then make purchases with your credit card up to your credit limit. You must pay at least the minimum payment before the due date each month. Your security deposit does not cover minimum payments. Paying off your credit card balance each month instead of carrying a balance may help build your credit rating. By making payments on time with all your creditors and maintaining your account balances below the credit limits may help you build, rebuild or re-establish your credit history, and you may qualify for an unsecured credit card at a later date. You can read more about secured credit cards by visiting our Credit Card Section.
Unsecured Credit Cards are another type of credit cards for people with bad credit. Be careful when applying for one of these cards. They come with higher interest rates and high annual fees. There are several offers of unsecured credit cards for people will bad credit. However, you may be offered a secured card, based on your credit report and other information you provide. All of this is disclosed before the application is processed. Meaning you can opt out of receiving any card; if you prefer not to continue. Our Credit Card Section is a good place to start if you are dead set on obtaining an unsecured credit card. If you are unable to get an unsecured credit card, you should not attempt to apply for other unsecured offers, as this may damage your credit even more.
If you’re an individual with fair credit, there are some really nice options for you. Our site offers some very nice credit cards for individuals with limited to average credit histories. Before you decide on any credit card, you should compare all the “fair credit offers.”
There are credit cards for young working adults and debt free individuals. Credit card companies target younger people since they know they have acquired a lifetime customer and offer easy to get student credit cards. Another reason why they target younger workforce is that this group tend to have lower debts if any. This is the key factor that an issuing company considers when approving a person for a credit card.
Discover more information on credit, credit cards, savings, debt, and become an empowered consumer when it comes to saving money. Debt Wise Solutions has several books that would be beneficial to you.Take a minute and visit our bookstore.
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