Defining Credit Card Finance Charges
There are other fees associated with the use of a credit card besides the actual charge from each purchase. These other costs can add to the total balance on your account that you have to pay. The common credit card fees you will encounter at some point are the annual fee, the APR, late payment fees and the finance charge. The finance fee is added to it every month while the others are less frequent.
The credit card finance charge will be the dollar amount that you have to pay to the credit card provider for the use of their lines of credit to make purchases. This finance charge will be different depending on the APR or annul Percentage rate of the card. This is how credit card finance charges affect you card balance.
Your individual credit card company will have its own policies and approach to calculate the finance charge for your card. The outstanding balance will determine how much you will end up paying in credit card finance charges each year more than the APR will affect it. You need to understand how your outstanding balance is calculated.
The outstanding balance on your credit card may be calculated during one billing cycle or within two billing cycles. You must note that there are three types of balances which are used to figure the amount of your annual finance charges. These balances are the adjusted balance, the average daily balance, and the previous balance. Each of these balances has something in common, in that you will need to decide if new or recent purchases will be counted as part of the relative balance. When you have done this, you can then calculate the credit card finance charge. The finance charges will vary depending upon the billing cycle based on the carry- over balance and the timing of different purchases and payments.
Many of the credit card companies provide credit cards that operate under what they call a minimum finance charge policy. With this type of finance charge the cardholder is given a flat rate for the finance charges each year. This will mean that the rate will not vary or fluctuate because of differences in the cards balance each billing cycle. Your minimum finance charge is activated when your card has a carry-over balance that goes into the following credit card billing cycle.
There is no way to avoid the credit card finance charge. It is a necessary cost which must be paid in order to continue using the convenience of the credit line to make purchases. This means that it is important to have a good idea of how they work with your particular credit card company. You should have a working knowledge of what affects the charges that are added to your balance that you will have to pay. What would you do if you are assessed a wrong amount and then pay for something that is not applicable? You must spend some time studying your credit card terms and uses in order to know what to watch for.