National nonprofit American Consumer Credit Counseling explains what consumers need to look for before opening a credit card
Boston, MA – October 29, 2018
Although there are many credit cards that offer great rewards and low fees, there are also cards that should be avoided. It is important for consumers to understand their needs and study each card for hidden fees before applying. To help consumers, national nonprofit American Consumer Credit Counseling explains what types of credit cards to avoid.
“It is important that consumers read all the fine print before applying for a credit card,” said Steve Trumble, President, and CEO of American Consumer Credit Counseling. “Although a credit card should help you build credit and earn rewards, it can also create a lot of damage – especially if you haven’t done your homework and are unaware of hidden fees associated with your card.”
According to a recent survey by CreditCards.com, the average interest rate for new card accounts is about 17 percent. Experian found that 51 percent of consumers are most concerned about high interest rates with credit card use, followed by late fees (31 percent). A survey by the Federal Reserve Board found that 83 percent of adults have at least one credit card. The survey also found that 27 percent of consumers with a credit card carry a balance most of the time.
American Consumer Credit Counseling discusses what types of credit cards consumers should avoid.
- High Initiation Fees – Some cards charge high initiation fees before the consumer even makes a purchase. Although cards can’t charge more than 25 percent of the card’s credit in fees, the price still adds up.
- Interest Charges – Interest costs add up when you hold a balance. The best way to avoid this is to pay the balance in full. It is also important to completely avoid credit cards that have an annual percentage rate (APR) over 30 percent.
- Transaction Fees – Watch out for credit cards that charge balance transfers or cash advance fees. Search for cards that don’t charge these fees for at least the first 12 months. If you are a frequent traveler, avoid credit cards with foreign transaction fees – which can add three to five percent to the purchase price.
- No Credit Reporting – If the credit card doesn’t report to the credit bureaus, it will not help improve a consumer’s credit.
ACCC is a 501(c)3 organization that provides free credit counseling, bankruptcy counseling, and housing counseling to consumers nationwide in need of financial literacy education and money management. For more information, contact ACCC:
- For credit counseling, and student loan counseling call 800-769-3571
- For bankruptcy counseling, call 866-826-6924
- For housing counseling, call 866-826-7180
- Or visit us online at ConsumerCredit.com
About American Consumer Credit Counseling
American Consumer Credit Counseling (ACCC) is a nonprofit credit counseling 501(c)(3) organization dedicated to empowering consumers to achieve financial management through credit counseling, debt management, bankruptcy counseling, housing counseling, student loan counseling and financial education concerning debt solutions. To help consumers reach their goal of debt relief, ACCC provides a range of free consumer personal finance resources on a variety of topics including budgeting, credit and debt management, student loan assistance, youth and money, homeownership, identity theft, senior living, and retirement. Consumers can use ACCC’s worksheets, videos, calculators, and blog articles to make the best possible decisions regarding their financial future. ACCC holds an A+ rating with the Better Business Bureau and is a member of the National Foundation for Credit Counseling® (NFCC®). For more information or to access free financial education resources, log on to ConsumerCredit.com or visit https://www.consumercredit.com/debt-resources-tools/