Submitted by Jen Jones on Thu, 01/14/2010 - 1:34pm
It's 2010, the year we take charge, so to speak, of our credit cards. In only a couple of months, credit card companies will have to fully abide by the provisions of the Credit Card Accountability, Responsibility and Disclosure Act (CARD). Some components of the act have already been in action.
Nevertheless, consumer advocates are expecting a slew of new credit card company tactics to increase, damage and elevate our debt, credit reports and heart rates. This is especially frustrating for those trying to re-establish a sound credit rating after bankruptcy. If more fees and restrictions come into play, it will take that much longer to use a credit card as a reputable credit source. (Remember though, this may not be a bad thing. Charge cards are a good way to use plastic and remain on top of your balance.)
We've discussed several times on the blog how credit issuers have started to counteract the measures by pushing interest rates just enough to not warrant any additional legislation yet get as much as possible from those Americans who already carry a significant monthly balance. For those with solid credit who manage a small balance over multiple cards, lenders have seized credit limits, decreasing what's available and consequently creating marks on credit reports.
(It should be noted that action is underway to prevent those specific initiatives from harming a credit rating.)
Here are a few new methods by which credit card companies will be able to gouge their customers.
Thankfully, consumers' use of credit cards is at its lowest point in more than two decades. And it looks as if it may stay that way.
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