Simply put: They're expensive.
Consider the following penalties for missing a credit card payment:
The US Federal Reserve recently proposed a new rule that imposes limits on the penalty fees credit card issuers can charge, but the best way to use your card is to pay on time. Should you miss a payment, try to negotiate before paying a late fee and having your interest rate hiked.
If you're normally on time with your payments, it's pretty easy to have a late fee removed. (If you're habitually late, work on your credit card handling skills.) You don't even need to use secret negotiation tactics or threats of cancellation. Most companies will let cardholders waive one late fee per year, and the process is simple.
This also can work with bank fees and even utility bills; it's worth the phone call. After all, the money you'd be charged in late fees is money that could go into your savings account or emergency fund or used as fun money for a weekend getaway!
To avoid the hassle of late fees in the future, consider setting up automatic bill payments. You can still review your statements for accuracy, and you'll have the assurance that you'll pay on time, even if a bill slips your mind.
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