Let's face it, nobody wants to be whacked with late fees. . .
Getting charged with late fees on your bad credit charge card can cost you a small fortune if you let it get out of hand. In fact, at anywhere from $20 to $40 per charge and potentially being reported to the credit bureaus, those late fees are definitely something to avoid.
Ideally you'll be using your bad credit charge card to help you establish an on-time payment history with the credit bureaus. Whether you're using a secured or unsecured card, you should be sure that they report your payment information to the credit bureaus in order to get the most out of this credit account. But since they report to the credit bureaus you want to be sure not to have lots of late payments or else you lose out on the benefit of having your bad credit charge card in the first place.
Pay Your Bill Right Away
Of course, the obvious way to avoid this type of situation is to just pay your bill on time. An easy way to do this is to set up automatic payments via your checking account of another bank account. That way, if you're using your card to pay for a small monthly bill that you know you'll always be able to cover with your checking account, you can just have the money come out automatically and have your payments made virtually on autopilot. You can also pay by phone instead of online but most banks charge a fee for this service so this should be kept as a last resort when a payment just slips your mind. Otherwise, the online option is probably better.
Allow Enough Time For Your Payment To Get There
If you mail your bill in, don't wait until the last minute. Since it takes a few days or more for the bill to reach your bank and be processed, you should allow for that amount of time when you mail your bill. In fact, it's probably just best to go ahead and pay them as soon as you get paid, either every week or bi-weekly. Just take a look at what bills are coming due between when you get paid and the next time you get paid and send in all the upcoming bills at once. It takes a lot less time and is easier to remember than paying numerous bills at various times throughout the month.
Change When Your Payment Is Due
One of the best things you can do to save yourself a ton of headaches each month is try to synchronize when your bills are due with when you get paid. It can be stressful having everything due at once, say at the beginning of the month, especially when you know you'll be "good for it" in a couple of weeks. Some creditors won't allow you to change your billing date but many of them will so it's worth a call to them to make see what their policy is. Even if only a handful of them will let you change, that can be enough to ensure that none of your bills are late and that your payments are spread out throughout the month and don't hit you all at once.
Find Out How Extra Payments Affect Your Next Due Date
Finally, if you send in multiple payments, for instance your minimum payment when it's due and then an extra payment a little later, be sure to check whether or not that extra payment changes the due date of your next bill. It might not. Unfortunately sometimes people think that the extra payment made earlier will push off the next time their bill is due for an additional 30 days or so, but this is not always the case. So be sure to check your next statement when it comes in and plan accordingly.
By following these simple steps, you can avoid paying late fees on your bad credit charge card and ensure that you continue building an on-time payment history in order to boost your credit rating.
How many of these tips can you take action on today?
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