After months (or years) of whittlingaway at the balance on your credit card,you're ready to pay off the balance, soyou write a check for the amount on thecredit card statement. Next month, youget a bill for interest; if you ignore it,you'll get another one the followingmonth for interest on the interest plus alate penalty. That's the residual interesttrap (ie, being charged for interest thataccrues between when you write thecheck and when the card issuer processesit). Call your issuer before youwrite the check. Tell the phone rep thatyou're paying off the balance but wantto avoid residual interest and ask whatthe balance will be in 10 days. You mayend up with a credit if your check isprocessed faster, but it's better than pilingup more interest charges.