Top 7 Factors to Consider When Selecting a Credit Card

Top 7 Factors to Consider When Selecting a Credit Card

The very first credit cards were introduced way back in the early 1900s. At that time, they were seen as little more than gimmicks.

But today, more than 180 million Americans have at least one credit card. Credit cards are found in over 70{db9acdd2b5204ea72ac6ab2312f7630b6e282665344bcd151a43454148e44b67} of American households.

If you’re interested in putting a credit card into your pocket, it’ll be very important for you to choose the right one. Selecting a credit card can actually be a lot more difficult than you might think because of all the different options that are available in this day and age.

Choosing the wrong credit card could result in you going deep into credit card debt and failing to maintain a high credit score. It could also subject you to a high-interest rate and unnecessary credit card fees.

With this in mind, you should try to take the correct approach to selecting a credit card. Here are seven factors to consider when you’re in the process of doing it.

1. Provider

Because credit cards have become so popular over the course of the last 100-plus years, there are a lot of different credit card providers these days. It’ll be your job to find a credit card provider that you can trust.

You shouldn’t just pick out the first credit card provider that you can find and go with them. Instead, you should do your homework to see which provider is going to set you up with the best credit card for your specific situation.

By doing this, you might find that selecting a credit card like this Farmers Bank credit card would be perfect for you.

2. Interest Rate

In addition to considering which credit card provider you’re going to roll with, you should also take a good, long look at the interest rates that will come along with the credit cards that they can provide to you. The last thing that you want to do is sign up for a credit card with a high-interest rate.

You should ideally look for a credit card that’s going to start with a low introductory rate and stay low over time. It’ll make it possible for you to pay down any charges that you put on a credit card without breaking the bank.

Don’t be shy about shopping around for credit cards with the lowest interest rates possible. It might take you a little bit of time to do it, but it’ll be well worth it in the end.

3. Annual Fee

There are some credit card providers that will charge you an annual fee for the right to get your hands on their cards. Whenever possible, you should steer clear of signing up for cards with annual fees attached to them.

Yes, these annual fees will typically only be $99 or so. But why would you want to obtain a credit card with an annual fee when there are so many of them out there without any annual fees at all?

It won’t make sense for you to pay for a credit card that has an annual fee when you can get away with not having a credit card like this.

4. Penalties

In a perfect world, people wouldn’t ever miss any credit card payments. But of course, there are lots of people out there who aren’t always able to make their credit card payments every month.

As a result of this, credit card providers have come up with a list of penalties for those who skip payments. And at times, these penalties can be very harsh.

For example, some credit card companies will increase the interest rates on their credit cards dramatically if someone misses even a single payment. They’ll also subject them to late fees and other penalties in an attempt to deter them from not making payments.

You aren’t going to find any credit cards that don’t come with any penalties attached to them. But you should be able to find some that will limit how harshly providers penalize people for missing payments. It’ll protect you in the event that you ever find yourself in a position where you can’t make a credit card payment.

5. Rewards

The credit card industry has become very competitive in recent years. Because of this, many credit card providers have started to try and entice people to sign up for their credit cards by offering them rewards.

In some cases, credit card providers will give people cashback on many of the purchases that they make with their cards. In other instances, they’ll reward them with things like free flights and free hotel rooms.

You should take full advantage of these rewards whenever you can. It’s always a good idea to see what kinds of rewards come with credit cards prior to signing up for one.

6. Security

You want to know that a credit card is safe and secure to use from the moment that you first stick it into your wallet. It’s why you should make sure that the credit card you sign up for has a special chip in it that’s designed to make your security a top priority.

You should also look into what will happen if someone fraudulently uses a credit card that you sign up for to make purchases that you didn’t authorize. You want to have a credit card provider in your corner that will work to rectify the situation so that you don’t end up with a huge bill on your hands.

7. Customer Service

You’re going to have to reach out to your credit card provider from time to time with questions and concerns that you have. With this in mind, you should be sure that they have a top-notch customer service department that is ready, willing, and able to help you.

You should put a credit card provider’s customer service team to the test before you apply for a credit card through them. If they aren’t up to your standards, they might not be the right provider for you.

Remember Each of These Factors When Selecting a Credit Card

The good news for you is that you’re going to have tons of choices when you’re working your way through the process of selecting a credit card. The bad news is that it’s very easy to get overwhelmed when you have so many options.

Keep the factors that we’ve mentioned here in mind when selecting a credit card to make choosing one easier on you. They’ll guide you in the right direction as you set out to find the right credit card.

Get more tips on picking out a credit card by reading some of the other articles posted on our blog.

Derick Baxter