Why should you use credit? How can credit impact your life? What kinds of interest rates and hidden fees should you expect? These are all great questions involving credit and many people have these same questions. If you are curious to learn more about how consumer credit works, then read no further.

When you are looking over all of the rate and fee information for your credit card make sure that you know which ones are permanent and which ones may be part of a promotion. You do not want to make the mistake of going for a card with very low rates and then they balloon shortly after.

Credit cards should always be kept below a specific amount. This total depends on the amount of income your family has, but most experts agree that you should not be using more than ten percent of your cards total at any time. This helps insure you don’t get in over your head.

Take the time to play around with numbers. Before you go out and put a pair of fifty dollar shoes on your credit card, sit with a calculator and figure out the interest costs. It may make you second-think the idea of buying those shoes that you think you need.

Carefully utilize your credit cards. Give yourself spending limits and only buy things that you know you can afford. If you use the card for something, ensure you can pay it back immediately. When you have a balance on the card, it is too easy for the debt to grow and this makes it more difficult to clear completely.

The signature strips on the back of your new credit cards should be signed as soon as you receive them. Too many consumers forget this important step, and their credit cards are that much more at risk of theft. Most merchants require that your signature matches your I.D. This can help to ensure no one uses your card unauthorized.

Getting a brand new credit card as soon as you are legally able to isn’t necessarily the best idea. While doing this is common, it’s a good idea to wait until a certain level of maturity and understanding can be gained. Spend some time living as an adult and learning what it will take to incorporate credit cards.

Instead of just blindly applying for cards, hoping for approval, and letting credit card companies decide your terms for you, know what you are in for. One way to effectively do this is, to get a free copy of your credit report. This will help you know a ballpark idea of what cards you might be approved for, and what your terms might look like.

By reading this article you are a few steps ahead of the masses. Many people never take the time to inform themselves about intelligent credit, yet information is the key to using credit properly. Continue educating yourself and improving your own, personal credit situation so that you can rest easy at night.