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Home / Credit Cards / Note To Credit Card Issuers: How Dumb Do You Think I Am?

 

Credit Card Issuers:  How Dumb Do You Think I AmFor everyone who hates to read a blog where the writer goes off on a rant, please skip to another post. This is pure rant without the expletives that are flowing through my mind right now.

If you have read this blog very often, you know that I admit to the misuse of credit cards in the past and still have residual bad credit from that misuse, a divorce, and a bankruptcy. I understand that I pose a bit of a credit risk on paper. Now that disclosure has been made, on to the rant.

Why am I upset, you may ask. During the past ten days I have received three credit card offers. I already have two cards with decent interest rates and do not intend to open more accounts, but I do read the offers to see what is out there. I try to review decent sounding cards for this blog. I also trash really bad ones for the same purpose. Here are the three that I recently opened:

First Premier Bank

I was offered the MasterCard that I need to rebuild my credit(their words). The card would have a small initial credit limit, but I would be considered for larger limits on a regular basis. The initial balance would be $300, but the fees for the first year were $175. Those fees would be immediately deducted from my limit, leaving me with $125. That is bad enough, but wait, it gets worse. The interest rate offered was 36 percent. Yes, I said 36 percent. That means that the first statement would be for $175 plus around $6 in interest, for an initial balance of $181.

Matrix

Matrix mailed me an offer for the Discover card that I needed to rebuild my credit(again, their words). As with First Premier, I was offered a small credit limit and regular reviews. The same $300 was offered, but the initial fees were only $75. How awesome, I would have $225 available! But wait, the interest rate was nearly bargain basement compared to the First Premier offer. It was only 29.9 percent. Add to that the fact that Discover is not accepted in nearly as many places as MasterCard and Visa and you have one spectacular credit card offer.

First Savings

First Savings offered me a MasterCard that was easier to understand and meets my needs(I wonder how much they spend on these marketing tactics). I would be offered a credit limit of up to $1,500, but it would most likely be the minimum limit of $350 minus the $95 upfront fee. I know you are holding your breathe; waiting to hear the remarkable interest rate. A mere 29.9 percent. Holy Cow, what an offer. I drooled just reading about it.

Now back to my initial question:  Exactly how stupid do credit card issuers think I am? Do past credit card issues make me a complete fool? Unfortunately, there are plenty of people who think that they have to accept these terms in order to repair their credit. I said people, but I should have said victims in order to be completely accurate. There are several other cards available to people with bad credit that are better offers than any of these. If you want to rebuild your credit history, try a few of the products offered by Capital One. The initial limits will be low, but have a built-in increase after six on-time payments and you will be considered for limit increases on a regular basis after that. There are quite a few secured credit card options that will be a better fit than the offers listed above.

While getting a credit card is an important step in rebuilding your credit score, it is not the most important. You need to change the way you use those cards. There has to be an end to spending freely with your credit cards. You must keep your balance under thirty percent of your limit and make every payment before the due date. If possible, you should pay your balance in full before the end of the billing cycle. If you do those two things, you will soon find your credit score jumping.

 

About the author: Jerry Coffey

 

Jerry Coffey spent many years in a debt-riddled gray area somewhere between broke and desperately broke. His seemingly endless need for more and more cash led him to payday loans, repossessions, bankruptcy, and depression. After years of the same financial style, he heard a piece of advice that inspired him to find a way to change. The advice: ''The very definition of a fool is someone who continues to do the same things, but expects different results.'' This led him to a much more frugal lifestyle that sees all of his bills paid on time and a growing savings account. Even the seed of a retirement account has begun to sprout.

 

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