What to Ask Before Signing Up for Credit Cards (Part 2)

July 23, 2013

By asking some of these questions regarding a credit card’s terms and conditions, you can avoid being stuck with credit cards that have expensive costs and fees.

By asking some of these questions regarding a credit card’s terms and conditions, you can avoid being stuck with credit cards that have expensive costs and fees.

As a continuation of What to Ask Before Signing Up for Credit Cards (Part 1), here are some additional crucial questions that you should ask credit card companies’ customer service representatives before signing up for a new line of credit. By taking the time to ask these important questions, you can:

  • Clarify the specific fees, as well as the terms and conditions, associated with a particular credit card
  • Effective shop around for the best credit card for your needs and circumstances
  • Avoid spending hundreds or even thousands of dollars in credit card fees and other costs, which could also, in turn, help you avoid sliding into serious credit card debt.

Additional questions to ask about the terms and conditions of credit cards include:

  • Questions about other fees: In addition to late fees, credit cards may also be associated with balance transfer fees, annual fees and overlimit fees, which can quickly add up.
    • Is there a balance transfer fee assessed for each time I transfer the balance of another credit card onto this new credit card? If so, how much is the balance transfer fee?
    • Is there an annual fee assessed simply for having this credit card? If so, what is the annual fee and are there options for having this annual fee waived?
    • If I choose to opt-in for “overlimit” coverage, how much is the overlimit fee that is charged each time I exceed my credit card limit?
    • Aside from these fees, are there any other fees associated with this credit card that I should be aware of? If so, what are they, how much are they and when are they assessed?
  • Questions about cash advances:
    • Can I use this credit card to get cash advances at an ATM or a bank?
    • If so, how much interest is charged for each cash advance I take out?
    • How soon after taking out a cash advance would the first payment be due on that advance?
  • Questions about credit card rewards
    • When to the advertised rewards start accumulating for the card (i.e., how much do I have to spend before seeing any rewards)?
    • How long are the rewards I have accrued good for?
    • Are there specific stipulations as to when I am not allowed to use or cash in these rewards?

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Categories: Bankruptcy, Blog, Credit, Credit Card Debt, Credit Cards, Credit Reports, Credit Score, Financial Tips