So, your credit card application has been approved and you’re all excited that you can finally use your very first credit card. Certainly, it always helps to have credit cards and learn how to build credit with your first credit card. Besides making it convenient to buy things, credit cards are the best tools to gain a good credit score and establish credit.
However, it helps to know how to use your first credit card responsibly. Remember, paying your bills on time helps to get a good credit score. A high credit score qualifies you for loans and other credit lines. What’s more? Well, lower interest rates and good repayment terms are some more benefits that people with good credit standing can avail.
Although you may or may not plan on taking a home or car loan, having a good credit score (FICO scores of 690 and above) paves the way for other benefits also. Some landlords and employers check your credit score before accepting your rent or job applications. In addition to that, an excellent credit score makes you eligible for access to utilities and mobile phone plans without putting up an initial deposit. Thus, when you learn how to build credit with your first credit card, you can avail many rewards.
Moreover, if you want premium credit cards offering attractive rewards, a good-to-excellent credit score makes it possible.
Various Ways of Establishing Credit With Your First Credit Card
Here are some tips for first time credit users to help them build credit.
- Start with Small Credit Card Purchases
- Try to Pay Full Monthly Balance
- Impose Limits on Your Credit Card Purchases
- Keep a Watch for any Errors
- Avoid mounting Credit Card debts
Start with Small Credit Card Purchases
Start by making small purchases on your Zolve Azpire Secured Credit Card. Taking subscription to a streaming service where you have to make small, recurring payments every month is a good way of doing so.
Among other tips for first time credit users, you should limit purchases on your credit card initially. So, stick to paying via cash and debit cards until you get used to paying with your credit card.
Try to Pay Full Monthly Balance
As you learn how to build good credit with your first credit card, you will start paying the entire balance on your monthly credit card bill. Even when you ask a financial expert for some tips for first time credit users, they recommend doing so. If that’s not possible, pay at least the minimum amount due.
If you want to know how to use your first credit card to build credit, always avoid late payments. This is because you will be charged a late fee. More so, you may have to pay a high-interest rate on the unpaid balance. Hence, the advice for first time credit users is to avoid late payments as it negatively impacts your credit score.
Financial planners suggest avoiding late payments when asked about how to use my first credit card to build credit. You can use the auto-payment option to ensure you do not default on your payments. However, keep tabs on how much money is going out of your account when using this option.
Impose Limits on Your Credit Card Purchases
The more you learn how to use your first credit card to build credit, you will realize that maintaining your Credit Utilization Ratio at 30% or lower helps. Your Credit Utilization Ratio measures how much of your credit limit you are using. It also plays a determining role in calculating your credit score.
To know your Credit Utilization Ratio of your credit card presently, divide your current credit card balance by your credit limit. Proceed by multiplying that number by 100 and this should give you your Credit Utilization Ratio.
Keep a Watch for any Errors
If you want to efficiently build credit with your first credit card, check your credit card statements every month. You can then catch any suspicious activity on your card. The law makes you liable to pay up to $50 in cases of stolen credit card fraud, which many credit card companies waive off. And if you are being charged for payments you did not make, report them at once. By doing so, you can get your money back and a new card with a different number.
Avoid mounting Credit Card debts
Paying the minimum amount due keeps you in good standing with your card company. On the other hand, allowing debt to mount on the remaining balance keeps you stuck in a debt trap. If you pay only the minimum balance each month, you add to the accumulated debt and end up paying high-interest charges on the total debt amount.
As advice for first time credit users, try to use only up to the amount that you can afford to pay back when the bill is due.
Getting your first credit card can get you all excited, though do not forget to listen to advice for first time credit users and use credit responsibly. You can make the most of your credit card if you avoid long-term debt, and pay your bills on time. By building positive credit habits, you can increase your credit score and get access to newer lines of credit. You can enjoy all these benefits at favorable interest rates and repayment terms. This helps to both save money and earn rewards.
Frequently Asked Questions
Can I earn more reward points if I use my credit card for all my purchases?
Some people use their credit cards for most of their monthly expenses. Nonetheless, this strategy works only if you pay the entire monthly credit card balance. Else, any rewards you earn get erased by the high-interest rates.
What happens if I am late with my credit card bill payment?
You end up incurring late fee charges and running the risk of a higher interest rate even if you pay your credit card bill even one day beyond the given deadline. Also, if you miss a credit card payment, it could damage your credit report and reduce your credit score.
What should I do if I lose my credit card?
Call your credit card issuer immediately if you lose your credit card. Make sure to keep the contact number of your credit card company and card number in a safe location. You can then report the loss of your credit card right away without fumbling for the information at such crucial times. You can even report a lost card via your credit card company’s app or website.
How can I track spends on my credit card?
To track your spending, you should log into your account and review your weekly transactions. You can also use a budgeting app to track your credit card expenses. In the process, you can avoid overspending and stay within the stipulated spending limit.
What perks do credit cards offer?
Credit card companies offer a wide range of perks. These include cash back, travel rewards, travel insurance, waiver on checked baggage fees, extended warranty on select products, and rental car insurance.
Among other perks of credit cards is price protection, which offers refunds in case the price of a product falls after you purchase it. To know about all the perks that your issuer offers, you should log in to your account or contact the customer service center.