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Winning with Credit Cards

[caption id="attachment_502" align="alignleft" width="150"]Photo by David Castillo Dominici Photo by David Castillo Dominici[/caption]

Not long ago credit cards were used only for major purchases such as appliances, furniture and medical expenses.  Credit cards have become a normal way of life and if used properly can be powerful tools in your wallet.

Credit cards play a major role in determining buying power through credit reports.  The higher the credit score the better.  You can achieve and maintain a good credit score by believing your card is a short term loan. It should be paid on time (also saves money in interest in late fees) and in full at the end of the billing cycle.  If that is not possible be sure to pay more than the monthly minimum.

Resist the urge to say yes to credit cards offered at retail stores.  While you will receive a 20% discount right then and there, the card may not be a necessity.  Every open credit card is listed on your credit report and having too many cards, with or without a balance, could show you are over extending your credit.  However, do not cancel a credit card.  If you are no longer going to use it, simply shred the card.  The length of credit history is a factor used in credit scoring.

Apply for and use credit cards with a low annual interest rate.  Some lenders offer an introductory interest rate.  Be sure to ask how long the interest lasts and what the new interest rate will be.  If it is a major hike, you might want to pass.  Lenders also partner with other companies to offer rewards for using the card.  This is a great opportunity to earn airline miles, cash towards paying the monthly payment and other gift cards.    It could be beneficial to use these cards even if there is a higher interest rate.

The bottom line is to take the time to research the program and always read the fine print before applying for a credit card.  There are times when financial problems arise from the loss of a job, death of a spouse, divorce or not spending money wisely.  Assistance is available to find a path to debt relief and asset protection.

Ronald A. Luzim first learns and understands the unique needs of each client and then offers personal service for each case. He is a former estate and tax attorney with the IRS, has been practicing law since 1974 and specializes not only in asset protection and bankruptcy but also in probate and real estate matters. Ronald is a Coral Springs probate lawyer, Coral Springs bankruptcy lawyer and Coral Springs family and divorce lawyer. In addition, as a practicing state certified family and civil mediator for over 25 years Ronald brings experience, expertise and empathy to your legal matter.  Please contact his Coral Springs office at 954 755 1500 for assistance in protecting yourself, your family and your property.

There is no substitute for experience.