Things I Wish I Knew About Credit Cards (And How I’ve Turned Things Around)

When you graduate high school, you get a ton of offers for credit cards. As an 18-year-old, it’s exciting to have access to funds to buy whatever you’d like. Sure, you know you have to pay the money back, but with a minimum requirement of 30 bucks a month, you’ll be fine. You wrack up charges on everything from your cell phone bill and gas to food and entertainment. You pay down the balance when you can and suddenly, the credit card company increases your limit. 

A Never-Ending Cycle

You continue this cycle of financial irresponsibility, perhaps you even apply for a few more cards. Fast-forward a few years and you’re a college graduate, ready to face the world. The only problem is you’ve got thousands of dollars of debt on your shoulders. Everything from renting an apartment and getting car insurance to applying for a personal loan and affording your everyday expenses is an uphill battle. Your credit card debt and poor credit history result in you getting rejected, paying more for things you need, and very little income to support yourself. 

Something Has To Give

Debt has a way of consuming your life. When it gets out of hand, the pressures to repay it all cause you physical, financial, and emotional strife. You want to break the cycle and get things back on track, but when you add it up, you become intimidated. You might try a few things, but it isn’t long before you feel hopeless. That’s where I found myself at the age of 25. I was in over my head in debt, living a substandard life, and feeling like I was destined to be this way forever. 

Education Is Power

I decided to do extensive research on credit cards and debt repayment options. As I learned more about these topics, I began to feel empowered. I realized that with a little hard work I could turn things around. Now that I’m on the right path, I figured I could help others by sharing information I wish I knew before I applied for my first credit card. 

  • Credit Cards Aren’t Free Money – In the back of your mind, you know that credit cards are borrowed funds. Yet you charge things to your account like it’s free money. You make poor spending decisions and rack up a balance that you ultimately have to repay – with interest. 
  • Minimum Payments Won’t Suffice – When you review your credit card statements, they show you a balance and a minimum required payment. In the mind of a young adult, coughing up $30 is a lot better than paying the full amount due. Although paying the minimum is better than nothing, it essentially covers the interest, leaving the principal balance untouched. Interest and fees accumulate and the amount you owe increases. 
  • Interest Rates Matter – When a credit card company offers you $1,000 you’re not thinking about the 25% interest rate. What you don’t realize is that these rates represent how much extra you’ll have to pay for using the card. It’s applied on a monthly and annual basis which gets more expensive as your outstanding balance increases. 

Consolidating My Debt

Now that I had a better understanding of how credit cards work and how they should be used, I was ready to get things under control. I found BriceCapital.com. They’re a financial agency that offers debt consolidation loans to people with high-interest, high-balance credit cards. After answering a few questions, a representative was able to get me approved for a low-interest rate loan that was more affordable and easier to manage. 

The money I saved in interest and late fees enabled me to afford my everyday expenses. I was even able to treat myself to some fun and entertainment on occasion. Although it took a few years, I paid the debt consolidation loan from Brice Capital in full. 

I know that there are millions of Americans with thousands of dollars of credit card debt that is preventing them from living life to the fullest. Many of them, like myself, got caught up in the thrills of having a credit card without having the background knowledge to be responsible. Ultimately, the road to financial freedom starts with education and finding solutions like Brice Capital to help you get back on track. It may seem impossible today, but with hard work, dedication, and comprehension, you’ll get there. 

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