I am delighted to say that I am a credit card deadbeat! In fact, some of you might already be credit card deadbeats too, if so, I commend you for your excellent work! Now, as for those who don’t know what a credit card deadbeat is, before you start thinking I have a screw loose, you may want to continue reading!
When I say that I am a credit card deadbeat, I don’t mean that I avoid my credit card bills. To the contrary, a credit card deadbeat is the insider term used by credit card company executives and refers to all of the credit card users who pay off their bill each month promptly; in doing so, such customers pay no interest and prevent the creditor from making any profit! That’s me! I love being a credit card deadbeat!
The alternative to being a credit card deadbeat is what credit card executives call a revolver. A revolver is a credit card user that constantly carries a balance and is charged regular, monthly interest on their charges. Credit card companies love revolvers because they, in essence, increase the bottom line for the credit card company and make them a nice profit. Further, from an insider perspective, the best customers not only carry a balance, but also make their payments late, triggering extra fees and a higher interest rate.
Okay, so I’ve been a credit card deadbeat for awhile now, but last year I went even further in improved my deadbeat ways. Not only did I hang onto my hard earned cash by refusing to line the wallets of the credit card companies, but I also happily lined my own wallet with their money, to the tune of $1,402. Yes, that’s right, they paid me $1,402 to use their cards; continue reading to find out how!
Cash Back Credit Card
First, I applied online for a Cash Back Credit Card and I was instantly approved. My new cash back credit card arrived to my house the following week ready for me to use. This card offered me 0% APR for 12 months and carried no annual fee; With it, I made all of my gas purchases, as well as grocery and drugstore purchases and earned 5% back cash back on the gas purchases and 1% back on all other purchases. I have a family of four and the gas purchases included gas for my spouse’s car as well. My average monthly purchases and cash back earnings were as follows:
Monthly Gas Purchases $325 x .05 = $16.25
Monthly Grocery Bill $1,200 x .01 =$12.00
Monthly Drugstore Purchases $160 x .01 = 1.60
Total Cash Back Earnings From Credit Card $ 29.85 x 12 = $358.20
Airline Rewards Credit Card
I also applied for an airline rewards credit card and again was instantly approved online. Like the cash back credit card, my new airline rewards credit card arrived the following week, came with a 0% introductory APR for 12 months and had no annual fee. This credit card earns 1 frequent flyer mile for every $1 charged.
I charged many of my miscellaneous expenses, including major purchases and business expenses, on my new Airline Rewards Credit Card. As a result, the qualified expenses came to an average of $2,250 monthly or $27,000 for the year, earning 27,000 frequent flyer miles, more than enough for an airline ticket to Hawaii: a $500 value!
0% Introductory APR for 12 Months
Now here’s the kicker. Since both credit cards came with a 0% introductory APR for 12 months, I paid only the minimum payments on each card and placed the money for my purchases into a savings account earning 2.5% (rates have gone up since). Using averages for simplicity, I made 12 monthly deposits of $3,935 into a savings account earning 2.5% interest compounded monthly. By the end of the year, I earned $544 in interest!
My Total Credit Card Earnings for the Year
So here is my total earnings from the cash back credit card, airline rewards card, and interest earned.
Cash Back 12 x 29.85 = $358
Free Airline Ticket $500
Savings Account Interest $544
Total Earned $1,402
Just to make sure I maintain my deadbeat ways, now that the 0% introductory rate has expired, I’ve paid off my balance from the money I deposited into my savings account during the year. To be a credit card deadbeat you need persistence, determination, and discipline. I did it, and so can you!
The invention of credit cards was a giant leap forward for humans. People around the world use their credit cards for all kinds of purchases and payments. The credit cards give the people, the freedom of purchasing what they want, without having to depend on their bank balance. Credit cards are used by all kinds of people in cities and towns across the world. It is a fact that a credit card can be a boon as well as a bane at the same time.
At times, people do not know how to effectively manage their credit cards. This is why, their credit score is severely affected and they find it hard to acquire financial assistance from banks and other lenders. In order to make sure that your credit score is not affected, you need to effectively manage your cards. You need to be careful about making payments and using the card for any purchase.
When you make your credit card payments on time, your credit score improves and you can obtain higher amount of credit. On the other hand, if you fail to make the payments on time, your credit score is negatively affected and you may not get any further credit from financial institutions. Here are a few important tips which will help you in effectively managing your credit cards:
1. Plan your purchases - Before purchasing or buying any product, determine if it is necessary to buy it. You must make a list of your priorities and stick to that so that you can arrange for the money needed to pay your credit card bills. At any point of time, make sure that you do not purchase something too expensive as it will make you cross your monthly budget or the credit limit on your card.
An effective way of way of planning your purchases is to make a shopping list. At the beginning of the month, try to make a list of things you need to buy with the card and stick to that list as much as possible.
2. Always check your statements - Check your statements on a monthly basis as the statements will help you understand your spending pattern. Based on your observation, you can try to avoid unnecessary purchases. Also, checking the statements will help you in knowing the minimum payment due for a particular month, so that you can make that payment on time and avoid extra charges or fees.
You can easily check your statements online, and you can also use your smartphones to keep a track on your card usage. Mobile alerts can be very helpful in ensuring that you do not end up paying more than what you are supposed to, when you use your credit card for any transaction.
3. Try to make full payment - Try to make full payments, whenever possible. When you pay your credit cards in full and within the due date, you do not have to pay any interest on the billed amount. Besides, paying the credit card balances in full will help in improving your credit score. Even if you are not able to pay your credit card balances in full, you should always make sure that you pay the minimum amount due, within the due date.
Apart from saving a substantial amount of money on interest, you will also be able to improve your credit score and increase your chances of obtaining more credit in the future.
4. Keep a track of supplementary cards - At times, you might forget the fact that you have provided supplementary cards to your family members and these cards are linked to your credit card account. The way these cards are used can have an impact on your credit card account. Hence, you should keep a track on them and also ensure that the transactions completed with them are paid for within the payment due date.
Besides, you also need to keep a track of these cards so that you can ensure that the credit limit of your card is not exceeded. If it is exceeded, you will end up paying an over limit fee and other hefty charges.
5. Look out for promotional offers - Why pay more when you can get the same product by paying less? Be a little smart when using your plastic money and make sure that you utilize the variety of offers and promotions provided by the card issuers from time to time. These promotions can provide you with access to discounts, deals and privileges across different segments such as dining, travel, shopping and so on.
You can not only save money through these promotional offers but you can also enjoy a variety of other exclusive privileges which will enhance your experience of using a credit card. Make sure that you always visit a website where you can find information about such promotions so that you can take full advantage of them.
6. Make multiple payments in a month - Do not just limit yourself to making a single payment within the payment due date every month. Instead, try to make multiple payments even if you pay small amounts. It has been observed that the credit card issuers and the credit bureau tend to send payment reports more than once every month, if there is a lot of payment activity in an account.
When you make multiple payments you make sure that the lot of positive information about your credit card usage is being sent to the credit bureau and in the process your credit score will get a big boost. For example, if the minimum payment due for the month is S$1500, do make a payment of S$1500 and apart from that also make other amounts in the same month.
7. Avoid cash advances - You will be provided with the feature of withdrawing cash with your credit card but you should avoid utilizing this feature. When you withdraw cash with your card, you will be charged a cash advance fee and you will also not get any interest free period to make the payment.
Cash advances will increase your minimum payment due and the overall balance of your card and will make it difficult to pay off the balance in full. It can also have a very negative effect on your credit score and so it is important that you try to avoid cash advances as much as possible.