Debt Consolidation

Looking Out For Credit Card Offers? Beware Of These Three Most Deceptive Terms

Try searching for credit card offers on Google and you will be bombarded with thousands of relevant results, where each company claims to offer the best. This makes the task of choosing a suitable and affordable credit card for you very difficult. Things become much more complex with the very fact that most of those offers include several hidden catches. The majority of companies, even the most reputed ones, often use certain deceptive terms just to attract more customers. You must be well aware of those terms to protect yourself. Your unawareness can prove to be very costly, pushing you toward nasty credit card debt problems. Following are the three most common deceptive terms that you are likely to come across in many such offers.

0% APR

The credit card offers that are tagged with 0% APR do not necessarily mean the best. You are strongly recommended to read the fine prints thoroughly before you sign up. In most cases, the 0% APR is applicable to a very small period of time initially. Once that introductory period ends, the company may charge a very high interest rate, more than you are assuming. So, look into the fine prints thoroughly to find out how you will be charged once that introductory period ends. But, that’s not all. Many times, the 0% APR applies only as long as you make the payments in a timely manner. If you fail to make the payments in full, this lucrative offer may just disappear in a cloud of dust and the 0% APR may instantly turn into a huge 24.9% penalty. Here, you must also be aware of the legal provisions regarding such offers. As per the credit card laws in the United States of America, the introductory period (during which the 0% rate must apply to) must be at least six months. Make sure you review each and every aspect of these offers thoroughly before making a decision like transferring say $2000 of credit card balance to these cards.

“You Have Been Pre-Approved”

The credit card offers that come with the tag “you are pre-approved (or pre-selected)” also often do not mean what they say (or what you assume they say). In most cases, your selection or approval only means that you are eligible to receive these offers; it does not necessarily mean that you qualify to get the credit card offered. There are still certain minimum eligibility criteria to meet. If you do not meet those criteria, your application may get denied. Companies send this type of offer to their target customers who fall within a specific credit range. For example, if you have a high credit rating, you will receive offers meant for people with high credit. If the data they collected about you are not correct, you may even receive offers that you do not qualify to.

0% Fraud Liability

Many credit card offers also tell you that you will have 0% fraud liability in case you become a victim of identity theft. It means, in such cases, where your credit card is used in an unauthorized way, you will not be held liable to make the payments. It is important for you to understand that there is nothing like 0% or 10% or 20% fraud liability. As per the federal laws, you are already protected against any such fraud. The maximum amount of money you can be charged in such cases is $50. So, even if a company is offering you 0% fraud liability, this is no added bonus – you deserve it anyway; it’s your legal right. It is important to note that these types of offers do not even necessarily mean that you will not be charged that $50 allowed by the laws.

The next time you receive credit card offers through emails or snail mails, make sure you pay special attention to these highly deceptive terms. Your awareness plays the key role when it comes to protecting yourself against possible credit card fraud or scams. The more informed you are, the better you will be able to handle your credit card debts.


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Posted in Credit Card Debt Consolidation, Debt Consolidation | 1 Comment »

One Response to “Looking Out For Credit Card Offers? Beware Of These Three Most Deceptive Terms”

  1. Sams says:

    Very brilliantly described. Credit card companies offer its consumers some really exciting things. Selection of best credit card can become difficult due to such attractive offers. Some reputable companies also try to distract the consumers by using such deceptive terms which can not be easily understood. Whenever we see something at zero percent we think that it is the best suitable option for us. But all that glitters is not gold always, just like that is the zero percent APR. Companies use this term to attract the consumers but they applies it for a very short term period and if you fail to make the payments in full, this zero percent will instantly jump to very high interest rate with heavy penalty charges also. So, every body should go through the terms and conditions thoroughly before accepting the offer. Now there is a new rule, in case of identity theft, you have to pay some certain amount, but companies advertise it as the zero percent fraud liability which is not true. So, it is good to study the conditions carefully and then make a selection of the best credit card company for you.

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