Have you heard about the new credit card rules? Credit card companies must give you more time to review statements and rate changes, which helps you make better decisions when dealing with debt.
Statements must now be mailed at least 21 days before the due date. Credit card companies make a good profit from late fees and rate increases. To increase the amount of late payments, they began billing closer to the payment due date, sometimes forcing you to pay within a week. This allowed them to add fees and raise rates based on payment history. The new rule allows you a standard billing cycle to review your statement and remit payment.
Second, creditors must now notify you within 45 days of a rate change. This is better than the previous 15 days notice. The rule change gives you a chance to accept or decline the offer, and gives you time to shop for a new credit card company.
The rest of the Credit Card Act will go into effect next year, hopefully with more consumer protections. Remember: if you owe creditors a balance that can’t be paid in full each month, you give them power over your financial health.