As credit card offers show up in your mailbox, it’s important to read the fine print and thoroughly review the credit card information of any card that is of interest to you.
You can use Bankrate.com to learn about various credit cards and determine which one best meets your needs. You can narrow down your search, focusing on everything from the best cards for transferring a balance to the best credit cards for racking up frequent-flier miles.
Once you find a card that seems appealing, you may be tempted to click on the “apply” button right away. But don’t fill out the application until you do some more research.
Instead, find a link to the terms and conditions for that particular credit card. There you will find credit card information, such as the annual percentage rate, or APR, for purchases and balance transfers as well as the length of time for which those introductory rates are guaranteed.
The information will spell out the conditions under which a penalty APR can kick in, such as if you make a late payment or go over your credit limit. The site also will tell you whether the card carries annual fees, as well as the fees charged for transactions and the penalty fees.
Once you have that information at hand, you can compare it for each credit card you find appealing, along with comparing the features of each card you are considering.
Because applying for credit cards can affect your credit score, be sure to check the credit card information fully before filling out the application.