Credit cards — a great tool when the economy is great, but let the economy get bad and people start worrying about how evil credit cards really are. Unfortunately people have to step back and realize that credit cards are really what you make of them. If you use them well, they’re a great tool. However, if they start becoming a crutch and a replacement for a good emergency fund, that’s where you start running into trouble. You can always find someone to get you a credit card — after all, your sow paying ways boost the credit card company’s bottom line.
However, this guide isn’t here to chastise you about your financial habits too much. If you’re suddenly finding yourself unemployed, then you will want to make sure that you actually look into your options when it comes to credit cards. See, most people are thinking about some tough decisions like whether or not to pay their debts or feed their families. We are never going to tell you that you should sacrifice your family’s basic needs to pay a credit card bill. You might not even have to make that choice if you have the right credit card. Indeed, the credit card companies are realizing that you’re going to have to make tough decisions and they want to boost morale and show the public at large that they aren’t heartless machines. This means that if you know that you just lost your job, you really do need to give the credit card company a call. They can postpone some of your payments, or even make a new payment plan.
The basic point here is that you definitely want to make contact. Dodging the credit card company is what actually makes them nervous. When you look like you’re never going to pay again is when the credit card company starts the collection process. As long as you adhere to the terms that they have worked out with you, you can repair your credit faster than if you just pretended that the problem isn’t there.
Yes, this is going to take some emotional bravery on your part. You’re going to be tempted to assume that there’s no way that you’re ever going to be able to take to someone that cares. However, that’s not true at all — many credit card companies are staffed with people that really do want to make sure that your credit remains in good standing. Happy customers are customers that will get out of their current situation and make enough money to where they can repay the card…and start spending again. Remember that the credit card company doesn’t make money until you start spending again. Anything that they can do to keep your financial situation stable while they can regroup is a good thing.
You will probably need to fax in proof of your unemployment. It helps if you qualify for actual unemployment benefits. This means that you actually were displaced because of the economy instead of just being fired. It’s always a good thing to check in the fine print as well — you might find these protections are automatic. On other credit cards, you’re going to have to buy a certain insurance.
Speaking of insurance, you might want to actually look into coverage for when you’re unemployed. This is separate coverage that you have to pay for when times are good, but it can really come in handy. So if you’re reading this and you’re not unemployed yet, you might want to go ahead and opt into this coverage. It can take a while to process claims of this nature, but it’s actually worth it.
The time is definitely right to make sure that you know all of your options when it comes to credit cards. You want to eventually find a new job and be able to pay down your credit cards faster, but the tips in this guide are designed to help keep the damage to a minimum -=- why not take action today?