3 Credit Card Alerts That Can Make Your Life A Lot EasierPosted September 21, 2017 in Credit Card Tips
Do you find yourself using cash less frequently these days? You’re not alone. As we move increasingly closer to a cashless society, it’s important to be aware of the upsides and downsides of using physical money less often. Some of the positives of using your credit card over cash include better consumer protection, rewards and ease of tracking your spending.
But credit cards aren’t without their downsides. Although credit cards make it convenient to spend, especially with Mastercard PayPass and Visa payWave, that convenience comes at a cost. When you’re receiving all your notices electronically, it can be easy to lose track of your spending and forget to pay your statement on time. Luckily, there are some alerts you can set up on your phone to make sure you don’t miss an important deadline again.
1. Credit card due alert
Have you ever paid your credit card late? I think almost everyone is guilty of that at least of one occasion. Sometimes it’s because we wait until the last moment and the payment doesn’t post until a day or two later or we just plain forget until we see interest accruing on our credit card. Not only is paying your credit card late annoying, it can be costly. You’ll be on the hook for credit card interest, not to mention your credit score could drop. The best way to avoid this is to set up an alert on your phone a week before your credit card statement comes due. Some banking apps even come with that. That way you won’t forget to pay your credit card bill on time, no matter how busy you are.
2. Credit limit alert
Hey, big spender! Have you ever been guilty of going over your credit limit? Sometimes it’s not even because you’re spending a lot. For example, Tangerine recently downgraded its rewards on its Mastercard. This caused me to use it less frequently and use another credit card in my wallet more often. The thing is I didn’t remember that the credit limit on this credit card was lower. Big mistake! I booked a flight and went over my credit limit, so I had to make a few frantic phone calls to clear it up. Not a fun situation!
To avoid this, it’s best to set up a credit limit alert. Some banking apps let you set up alerts for when you’re approaching your credit limit. Generally speaking, you don’t want to go over 35 percent of your total available credit limit, otherwise your credit score could suffer, making it harder to borrow money in the future. Not to mention going over your credit limit often results in a higher interest rate. With this alert, it shouldn’t be a problem anymore.
3. Spending alert
Hopefully I’m not the only one who looks at my credit card statement and am sometimes surprised with how much I’ve spent. If you’ve suffered from credit card spending shock, you’re not alone (especially around the holidays). The best way to avoid this is to set up a spending alert. This especially comes in handy if your hubby is an authorized user. That way you’ll know every time something is charged on the credit card and avoid going over your limit.
The Bottom Line
While credit alerts come in handy, it’s important to follow the golden rule of credit cards: only purchase what you can afford to pay off in full once your statement comes due. By treating your credit card like cash, you’ll reap the rewards, while avoiding the pitfalls of a cashless society.