Although store credit cards feel like an obvious choice to open during the holidays, there’s always some negatives to remember about those positives that the store clerks tout. Here are some pieces of advice to keep in mind:
- Zero percent financing: Although most stores claim that their cards have zero percent financing, there’s the fine print to keep in mind. Is it waived interest, or is it deferred interest? Often it’s deferred interest, and that usually means that they’ll hit you with a retroactive charge if you don’t pay the full promotional balance during the promotional period. Also, once those interests rates do kick in, they’re often absurdly high.
- In-store discounts: Of course this sounds like a great deal, but you need to think about if it’s fully worthwhile. If you’ve opened a lot of cards for different stores, that’s a lot of hard credit score checks happening in succession. That could impact your score negatively, and if you’re looking for a loan, it might hurt your chances. Is the discount worth all that?
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