Money Matters story idea: Credit card strategies

January 18, 2013 01:30

When used correctly, credit cards can be a powerful part of your day-to-day financial world. They make paying for practically anything easier. They give you a mechanism to pay monthly expenses quickly and easily once a month. Many come with rewards, in the form of free or reduced-cost gifts, travel or event tickets. And when used consistently, they can help build and strengthen your credit rating, provided you maintain a low balance (less then 10 percent of your credit limit) or none at all.

However, credit cards are a double-edged sword than can get you into financial trouble. They can make it too easy to buy something for which you don't have sufficient cash. It can be easy to lose track of spending. Interest rates are high. And large balances can quickly drag down your credit rating.

CBS MoneyWatch has a starting point with some common credit card tips. Talk with a local financial planner in your area to add some persepective and provide your audience with strategies to best use their credit.