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Beat the System: Don’t Do Dumb Things with a Credit Card


This edition of Beat the System covers the dumbest things you can do with a credit card.

We’ll start with paying late. The due date isn’t a suggestion – it’s a hard deadline, according to Paying late could include extra fees, a drop in your credit score and possibly being rejected for future cards.

Maxing out your credit is also a bad idea, unless you’re in crisis. Creditors watch how close your balance is to your limit, which factors into your credit score.

If you’re someone who only does the minimum payment every month, you’ll probably be paying a lot extra. We did the math on paying off a $500 balance with a minimum payment of 2.5 percent. If your card charges 10 percent interest, it’ll take more than five years to pay off and you’ll waste more than $130 on interest charges.

These are just some of the dumb things you can do with a credit card. For more, click here.