Minimum Mistake

Physician's Money Digest, April30 2004, Volume 11, Issue 8

If your credit card company onlywants you to pay $15 on your $1000debt, why pay any more? Financialgurus flinch when consumers say theypay only the minimum on credit cardaccounts, because credit card debt usuallycomes with very high interest ratesthat can bleed a budget dry. Paying theminimum on a $1000 debt at an interestrate of 9.5% would take 8 years, if youdidn't charge anything else on the card,and would cost you more than $1400.Professional debt counselors advise payingoff as much of your credit card bill asyou can afford until it's gone, and thenpaying the balance in full every month. Ifyou must carry a balance, shop atBankRate (www.bankrate.com) for thecredit card with the lowest interestrate.