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Crash Course to Credit Cards: Why get one?

18 Feb
First 4 digits of a credit card

Image via Wikipedia

Welcome to my Crash Course to Credit Cards series! In this post, I’ll be talking about the pros and cons of getting a getting card. (Note that this post is intended for Philippine based readers as the banking system here differ from other countries specially the United States.)

Why a credit card?

First, let’s define what a credit card is. According to Wikipedia, “A credit card is a small plastic card issued to users as a system of payment. It allows its holder to buy goods and services based on the holder’s promise to pay for these goods and services.”

Simply put, a credit card allows you to buy goods and pay for them later.

Why would I need one?

I remember back when I was working at a bank that issues credit cards. Whenever a credit card holder requests cancellation, we tell them to keep the card for emergencies. True. You’ll never know when you’ll need extra cash. Suppose you have to pay for something today, let’s say, a hospital bill. You can charge it to your credit card for the meantime and then pay for it once its due.

Here are other reasons to get a credit card:
  • Deferred Payments. Also called installments. You pay for what you bought monthly. This is what couples usually do whenever they need something. An appliance maybe. You get charged for the whole amount of what you bought but it gets spread into small, monthly payments making it easier to pay.
  • Security. Imagine going to the mall to buy a Php40,000 LCD TV in cash. With a credit card, you don’t have to physically carry money with you.
  • Convenience. You may charge your utility bills onto your credit card. That way, your credit card pays for your bills promptly. No need to worry about missing due dates.
  • Bonuses. Some credit cards earn points with usage. You can exchange those points for items or miles. With HSBC, you can get a tall beverage from Starbucks with a minimum purchase of Php2,000. With Citibank, you get movie passes for a minimum purchase of Php1,500. (Note that these are current promos and may end soon.)
  • Exclusivity. Some credit card companies offer special or VIP access to events like concerts and sale events. Others offer store discounts.

Those are the main advantages or perks of owning a credit card. But be warned, owning a credit card entails much responsibility or you’ll end up with a bad credit history. (More on this later in the series.)

If you want more first-hand information regarding credit cards, its better to ask someone who owns one. Ask a friend or a family member and know what its like to have a credit card.

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Crash Course to Credit Cards

9 Feb
Credit cards

Image via Wikipedia

I’ve been asked by many regarding credit cards. What are credit cards? How do you use them? I then decided to make a beginner’s guide to using and maintaining credit cards. Owning one can be a huge responsibility so take heed of my tips and advise!

 

Beginners’ Guide to Credit Cards

  • How to Apply for a Credit Card
  • Basic Credit Card Use and Tips
  • Decoding Financial Jargons
  • Getting Out of Debt
  • F.A.Q.s

Check back often for updates! Also, don’t hesitate to share your experiences with your credit cards.

 

I’m gonna get you… one way or another.

23 Jan

No, I’m not talking about killing someone. I’m talking about the thing I so wanted to have right now. A Digital Single-Lens Reflex camera commonly known as DSLR.

Why?

Back then, I’m into videos. Don’t know what caused the shift but I love doing them both. I love taking pictures and being able to share them others. We have a couple of point-and-shoot cameras of decent quality but my problem with those kind of cameras are the images they produce. I like to call them bland photos. I can’t have enough detail on the photo to be able to show others how good or breathtaking my subject is. I have a lot of things to consider. The bills ain’t gonna pay themselves, right?

So why not get one?

Ah. That’s the problem. You see, I don’t have the money to buy it right now. You may have had yours as a gift or bought it yourself. Good for you. I, however, am not that lucky my friend.

What now?

The million dollar question. What now? I was once an impulsive buyer. Whenever I decide to have something, I usually get it in less than half a month. How? Never mind the specifics, but what I did mostly was the buy-it-now-problems-later approach. I’ll buy the item now and worry about the money I spent later. This time, I’ll SAVE.

You heard me, save. Whoever told you that saving is easy was lying! (or its just me) I’ve been saving for a lot of things ever since I can read and write. I was not able to reach even half my goal. I either went impulsive and bought what I want right away or changed my mind and bought something else. I hope its different this time.

I’ll be making a How to Save post after I successfully start saving. Collating everything I learn from it.

“Do I need a Credit Card?”

16 Sep
CIMB Petronas MasterCard Gold Credit Card

Image by liewcf via Flickr

Part 1 of Credit Cards: Pinas Edition

Do you really need a credit card? Before you even think of getting one, try answering the following questions first:

  1. Are you an impulsive buyer? Do you often buy something you don’t really need?
  2. Have you missed payments for or have ran away from a debt?
  3. Do you spend more than you earn?

If you answered yes to any of the questions above, chances are, you’ll have a hard time managing a credit card and I suggest you stay away from them. Maintaining a credit card is a responsibility. You must have control over your finances and buying urges if you are to get one.

Credit card companies actually want you to overspend! Because overspending means you can’t pay your current balances in full forcing you to revolve or pay only the minimum. Revolving earns you interest and interest is profit for the credit card company. Worse is missing a payment entirely. Not only will you still earn interest, you also get charges for doing so.

But, there’s also the positive side of having a credit card.

  1. Convenience. Imagine not having to bring cash with you. Not to mention credit cards are accepted globally.
  2. Bonuses and Perks. Usage of credit cards often earns you points and miles. Perks like discounts are also good.
  3. Identification. Credit cards are also a form of identification on some establishments like hotels.
  4. and more…

In my next article, we’ll talk about how and where to get a credit card.

1st Earning Online!

12 Sep

I just got confirmation that my earnings from my 1st HYIP account had already been deposited on my Liberty Reserve account. That means, I GOT PAID! Proof that the program I’m currently in is not a scam…  yet.

Here’s a screenshot of my Liberty Reserve account:

I invested $50 and I got $66 in return after 12 days. (I only withdrew my $16 earning and left $50 for reinvestment. I had $8 already on my account so $16 plus $8 is $24. Whoa! Look at all those dollar signs! Haha!)

Since I’ve already proven its authenticity, I’ll be making a guide on how you’ll be able to invest too! Watch for it in the coming days.

(For your reference, Liberty Reserve is like Paypal. They process payments to and from online merchants. In this case, I use Liberty Reserve to fund my HYIP account and the merchant pays me via Liberty Reserve as well. Think of it as your online bank account.) Want to also earn online? Read my guide here.

liberty reserve logo

Image via Wikipedia

Wanted: Financial Manager

12 Sep
Detail on a 5-piso coin

Image via Wikipedia

Just recently, a friend of mine asked for my help in managing his finances. He’s having a hard time managing his money. He’s earning way more than me but he thinks its still short. He doesn’t really have a lavish lifestyle but he’s having trouble saving. Not that I’m an expert or anything but I’ve been saving and taking control of my hard earned cash and I’ve been getting good at it.

We’ll see what happens.

Credit Cards: Pinas Edition

10 Sep
Credit cards

Image via Wikipedia

 Do you own a credit card? Do you want to have one? Do you have one but are having a hard time managing it?

In the next couple of days, I’ll be blogging about credit cards. (from here on lets call them CC) The title says Pinas Edition because I’ll be dealing primarily with CCs issued in the Philippines. I’ve been a CC owner for more than a year now. I was also a previous employee of a local bank that offers CCs.  My goal is to give you a beginner’s guide to having, owning and maintaining a CC. I’ll try to keep the financial jargons to a minimum so people with zero credit card exposure could still follow.

My outline looks something like this:

  1. Why do I need a credit card?
  2. How do I get one? (banks that offer CCs, their requirements, procedures in applying)
  3. How to use and maintain one. (card activation, terms and conditions, special features, cut-off and due date, charges)
  4. Dangers of owning a CC.
  5. Hope for previous CC owners who were not able to handle their accounts well.

Please do understand that I’m not an expert in this matter. Everything I’m sharing is from my personal experiences and information I got from researching and asking. If you think I forgot an important topic, please let me know.

Stay tuned!

Earning money online.

31 Aug
make_money)online1

Image by denharsh via Flickr

I’m really into earning online. Who doesn’t want the convenience of staying at home browsing websites and earning at the same time? But finding a money making system that actually works can be tedious! Just try searching “make money online” on Google and you’ll get hundreds, if not, thousands of so-called “proven” ways to earn online.

I joined this particular website (sorry, can’t announce what just yet) wherein you get paid by browsing a specific number of websites a day. This is the 1st time I have joined such a website since money making schemes like this is risky and involves some investment.

Once I get my first earning from this scheme, I’ll share how I did it and how you can do it too because by then I have proof that the system works.

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