07 Aug

What to Consider When Choosing Credit Cards

When you’re looking for credit cards, you want to make sure you get one that fits your wants and needs. It might be a little overwhelming trying to navigate through all the different choices being offered, and instead of choosing the first one that sends you a letter in the mail, you should shop around to see which card fits your spending habits and has the rewards you want.

Why Do You Want A Credit Card?

This is the first question you should answer before beginning to look at any credit cards. There can be a variety of reasons ranging from building your credit score, earning card rewards, or making large purchases! These common reasons often have different cards that work best for each.

Building Credit

Credit Cards are a fantastic tool for building credit. If this is the reason you’re looking into a card, you should look for something with no annual fee. To build credit, you should pay off your card every month, which means you can afford to go with a card with a higher interest rate.

Some credit cards require you to pay an annual fee that can range up to hundreds of dollars, however, this is an easy requirement to fulfill. Due to the sheer volume of credit cards available, many of them have no annual fees. Be sure to check the fine print as some cards won’t charge you an annual fee until the second year of being a cardholder.

Earning Rewards

Different cards come with different rewards, while some come with no rewards at all. Rewards typically include cashback, free trips, airline points, hotel stays, gift cards, and merchandise! There is an unlimited number of rewards you can find on credit cards now, in fact, there are great cards that give you rewards just for spending! RMLEFCU credit AND debit cards allow for LEO Card Rewards where you can redeem gift cards, cash back, charitable donations, travel, experiences, event tickets, and merchandise.

If you want to earn rewards, try to find a card that offers rewards based on how you’re already spending. This is so you can get maximum rewards without having to go out of your way to spend differently.

Large Purchases

If you’re looking for a card to make a large purchase, credit limit and percentage rate are the two things you should focus on. Credit cards usually have high-interest rates, but if your credit score is looking good, you can shop around for a lower APR*. You can also find cards with 0% interest for the first few months – 1 year, which means an interest-free loan, for the time being, given if you pay it back within the time.

If you’re looking for a large credit limit, some cards will allow you to request an upgrade your credit limit after a year or more if you continuously pay your card on time. Some cards even offer balance transfers with no fees for better APR, credit limit, or a grace period!

Having a plan to know what to look for in a credit card is important so you’re not stuck with a card that doesn’t match your needs and wants. To have good credit card usage, remember these guidelines: always pay your bill on time, pay your bill in full each month, and have a plan for large purchases. Speak to an RMLEFCU representative today for any questions you have regarding our variety of credit card options! Contact us at (303) 458-6660 or lending@rmlefcu.org.

05 Apr

 The Advantages and Benefits of Credit Cards

Credit Card

While credit cards and debit cards may seem quite similar, they are actually very different when it comes to how they are used. A debit card is directly linked to a checking account or money market and transactions are taken from the available balance in that account. Credit cards, on the other hand, are not linked to a checking account and there is no balance due immediately after a transaction. Instead, it works with monthly payments.

Credit cards often get a bad reputation, because of the delayed balance due and temptation surrounding that, but the truth is they can be very advantageous to your finances! Credit cards are a great tool for earning rewards, traveling, building credit, and handling emergencies or unplanned expenses. And, if you use them correctly, these advantages can even earn you money!

Benefits of Using a Credit Card

Let’s talk about the biggest benefit. Building your credit. A credit card is a line of credit and paying it off in full every statement can help you build your credit.

Along with that, when used responsibly, they can be beneficial when traveling. Major hotels and car rentals often require a hold on a credit or debit card. If you don’t currently have the funds in your account for the deposit/hold, it’s great to use a credit card for the time being.

You can also earn rewards on your card for purchases you make. These rewards can be in forms of cash back, discounts, or even travel miles! For those who use their cards regularly, a rewards card might be the best option for you so you can earn those extra points and redeem them for rewards!

How Do I Use Credit Cards Responsibly?

Treating your credit card as a debit card is a top priority. You should never spend more than what you can pay back. It’s essential for anyone who decides to open a line of credit to consider how they plan to make the payments and how to use their new purchasing power responsibly.

Credit cards also offer balance transfer options. These options allow a cardholder to transfer the balance on one or multiple credit cards to another card. The transferred balance is now subject to the interest rate and terms of the new card. Be sure to read the terms and conditions of you are to utilize the balance transfer option!

Which Card Should I Apply For?

There are credit cards options for every kind of spender. Some are specifically tailored for people trying to build up their credit, usually with a deposit attached to the card. There are some cards with low-interest rates for users who want to keep money on their card and there’s also rewards cards that offer enticing rewards in exchange for spending.

RMLEFCU offers three credit card options for our members. The Classic Visa, the Platinum Visa Select, and the Platinum Visa.

These three cards all have the following benefits:

  • Accepted worldwide
  • No fee for cash advances or balance transfer
  • Competitive rates with no annual fees
  • 25-day grace period to pay for purchases
  • Make payments and view statements online

Don’t know which card to choose? Watch this video to see which card is right for you!

If you have any questions or concerns, give us a call at (303) 458-6660 or visit a branch today.

27 Jun

Giving a Child a Credit Card: Why It’s Not as Crazy an Idea as It Sounds

Giving a Child a Credit Card

Do you remember when it first started to really sink in that you were going to have to repay all of those purchases you racked up on your credit card, plus interest? Many of us learn this lesson in early adulthood when we first become financially independent, but there is a way to help your children to this epiphany before it has to happen the hard way. By giving a child a credit card at an age as young as 12, you can keep the training wheels on while still helping them build credit and learn valuable financial lessons.

Builds Accountability

Skills like budgeting and money management come with practice, so why not start early?

Giving a cash allowance to a child is one step in building accountability, but giving them the capability to make credit purchases will take that budgeting training to the next level. Learning about delayed consequences for your spending decisions is something many adults have not even mastered yet. Start instilling the idea that choices you make today will always have consequences tomorrow while your children are still young.

Learn About How and When to Use Credit Cards

There is no harm in responsible use of credit cards. Using credit cards regularly will help lenders see that you are reliable to pay off debts, and when you are confident that you can afford to repay what you have borrowed, credit cards can be used to earn reward points and budget large purchases.

Giving a child practice making decisions of when to use credit versus cash will give them valuable financial practice for their adult life, and hopefully, avoid later falling into debt.

Online shopping is still growing and credit cards tend to be safer than debit for online purchases. By giving your child their own, they can make online purchases with their own money and not need to borrow a parent’s credit card.

Establish Credit Early

Many people begin building credit once they are adults. By allowing a child as young as 12 to have a credit card in their name, you can help them to build valuable credit gradually and be better prepared for larger purchases as young adults such as college loans, vehicles, and eventually their first home.

Parents Are Still in Control

With credit cards for children under 18, a parent or guardian can still be the responsible party and can track their child’s spending. These cards tend to have low, manageable limits and can be linked to a debt account for easy payments. You can kill two birds with one stone by giving a child a credit card; learn how to responsibly use a credit card while establishing a credit history.

Giving a Child a Credit Card

Open a credit card for your child in their name to help them learn valuable financial lessons early on in life. You will still retain control and the ability to track their spending, but with them being the primary holder, you can more closely give them the accountability a credit card of their own will one day require.

14 Nov

Tips for Using a Credit Card Safely Online

Use a Credit Card Safely for Online ShoppingAs the holiday season approaches, many of our members will be shopping online for gifts. Shopping online can save money and be super convenient for people on the go. But while having its many advantages, online shopping introduces as many potential threats to your financial security. Cyber fraud is big business and there are dangerous individuals online looking to profit off of your misfortune. The trick is to take extra precautions when buying online and be aware of suspicious websites. Please read these tips to help you keep your online transactions safe this holiday season. Read More