Saturday, June 20, 2009

THERE'S NO CREDIT FOR USING CREDIT WISELY

In case you missed it, the NYTimes recently ran THIS ARTICLE about how people who have high credit card balances are now being offered some pretty sweet deals by the credit card companies. You rememer those credit card companies, don't you? They're the ones who took zillions in government hand-outs when they'd over-extended themselves. I guess now they're just extending a helping hand to consumers who have also over-extended themselves.

What I don't understand is how people like us, people who pay their credit card balance in full every month, and on time every month, are now being told that their interest rate will increase, and the monthly grace period will be decreased. Or that one late payment will result in the interest rate increasing even further. Huh? Because I've lived within my means and met my financial obligations I'm being penalized? Had I made minimum payments and/or missed a few payments perhaps the credit card company would be calling me too to say that they'd forgive all or part of my debt.

What's happened to personal responsibility? To living within your means? Yeah, I know, you work hard, you DESERVE a vacation, a new car, a fancy house in a great neighborhood, a big screen HD television, whatever. Don't we all? But life isn't fair that way, and not all of us will ever be in the position to own the latest and most hip car/stereo system, whatever. Most of us will ever own a yacht or vacation on our own private island. Some of us might not even be able to afford a vacation (yes, I've been there too!), but that's just the way it is. Unless of course you're one of the largest bank in America and you need a hand-out because you've used poor judgement and faulty accounting methods. Or if you're living beyond your means on credit cards issued by those very same banks. Our economy seems to be built on sand that's rapidly shifting beneath our feet, and for some reason, everyone seems surprised!

3 Comments :

At 6/20/2009 03:13:00 AM , Blogger Gil said...

I had a tax client about 15 years ago that was a retired food salesman and he ran up huge credit card debt thanks to Foxwoods Casino and his own actions. He bragged about how easy it was to talk the credit card companies out of interest and late fees. Also, claimed to be able to talk them out of principal. He then paid off credit card 'A' with credit card 'B' that was offering free interest for a stated grace period if you transferred your balance from 'A' over to a new account with 'B'. He must have been one heck of a salesman in his younger days! We taught our two kids to pay their cards off when the statements come in and if they need a loan, for a major purchase, see the credit union.

The instant gratification youth of today have a lot to learn!

 
At 6/20/2009 03:39:00 AM , Blogger Barbara said...

I've made transfers from one CC to another to take advantage of zero percent interest, but only because it was in MY best interests. When the free period was over the CC was paid off - unfortunately most people just let the balance ride - often at higher than normal interest rates.

 
At 6/21/2009 09:27:00 AM , Blogger Judith in Umbria said...

You are not a profitable customer. I am not, either. They want to keep the fools spending who pay interest on interest, because that's where the big bucks are-- if they don't go bankrupt, that is.

 

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