“Out of sight, out of mind,” isn’t a phrase that you should use when referring to your credit card statement. By knowing how to read your credit card statement and staying on top of it, you can actually save in the long run. On top of saving money, you can also save yourself some time and energy by taking a look at your statement. Below I’ve listed a few of the reasons you should pay attention to that mail you’re used to tossing, and why.
Stop Fraudulent Credit Card Charges Fast
According to a recent study, one case of identity fraud occurs every 3 seconds. Three seconds! Thankfully, because of the high risk of fraud in today’s society, credit card companies do a pretty good job of monitoring our accounts for suspicious activity. However, you may find yourself with a frozen account if the company believes that you’ve been a victim. The best way to make sure you don’t end up with fraudulent charges, is to keep an eye on your account statements yourself. Don’t wait for the company to let you know, because by then it might be too late.
Uncover the Gray Charges
Although you may feel that they’re fraudulent, gray charges are actually just expenses that you, the cardholder, never intended to make. Because the amount of these charges is typically so small, it’s easy to overlook them if you don’t pay attention to credit card statements each month (or even more often if you have online access to your cards). Often, these charges are accrued by accidently signing up for services online. Free trials are one of the most common sources of gray charges – you sign up for the trial and then forget to cancel your membership before your card is charged. If you don’t take the time to monitor your statements then you could end up paying for a service that you aren’t using for months, and not even realize it.
Look for Mistakes
Just like everything and everyone else, credit card issuers can sometimes make mistakes. Unfortunately, their mistakes can result in unwanted fees or charges for the cardholder. These charges can be as minimal as being charged for a paper statement when you only get electronic statements, or as large as getting charged twice for one purchase that you made. Although the latter can wreak immediate havoc on your account, the smaller fees add up over time as well. Staying vigilant will help to keep these accidental fees at bay, and keep you from running the risk of doing damage to your credit score.
Even though checking your credit card statement may seem tedious or boring, it can help you out in the long run. Mistakes and fraud are a part of our world, and by watching out for them you can save yourself money and some unneeded stress down the road. Don’t add that statement to the ever-growing pile of unopened mail – take a couple minutes, open it, review it, and get on with your day.
If you find yourself struggling with debt or would like to find out about becoming debt free, call DebtHelper.com at 800-920-2262, or visit @ www.debthelper.com.