Credit Card Offers - Are Students Prepared?

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Though the recent financial meltdown has considerably reduced the number of credit card offers you are seeing in your mailbox, the inevitable offer will still show up. College students get their fair share of offers even though they likely don't have much of an income. With a little common sense, these credit card offers can represent a golden opportunity.

Starting out Slow

Credit cards are a great way to establish a good credit record. They're also a good way to ruin it. Though you may receive multiple credit card offers, you should pick two at the most, trying to find the lowest interest rates. A good start is one each of MasterCard and Visa.

Some credit cards offered to students are often accompanied by high interest rates. If you hold out, often you will see the rates start to come down. Also, avoid cards that have annual fees, even if they offer a slightly lower interest rate. As long as you keep your revolving debt low, the interest rates will unlikely match the yearly fee. Make sure you understand all the fees associated with the card. Fees such as ATM transactions, late fees, etc. can quickly add up.

Once you have the card, you need to establish a small balance. Many people think the best way to establish credit is to pay the bill in full each month but this isn't true. The key is to keep a small balance and pay your bill on time each month. If you are successful in doing this, you will see your credit rating continue to rise and you will receive more credit card offers. Soon you will be offered lower interest rates and other benefits associated with good credit.
Good credit is important to have in the modern world. College is a good time to start as long as you are responsible with your finances and don't bite the hook of every credit card offer that comes your way.

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