Late Credit Card Payment Penalties

Missed Credit Card Payment Penalty

Last year, I accidentally missed one credit card payment. As a result of this, all of my credit cards upped my APR to 29.99%. I have been paying the minimum on time to each of these cards, but I have not been successful in getting them to lower the APR. One company promised me that if I made payments on time for six months, it would automatically be lowered, but now they refuse to lower it. Only one company has worked with me. I've tried transferring balances, but I don't get many offers anymore. Any advice would be appreciated. My advice is never, ever miss a credit card payment. Thanks in advance for any help, tips, etc.

Ask for Help

I had a problem like that and I called and asked to speak to the collections department. Tell them you want to repay the bill and can they help you by lowering the interest. They may close your account, but it is probably for the best. I have closed all my credit cards but one.

Give Yourself Plenty of Time

I have heard that if you want your payment to be on time, mail it about 10 days before it is due. That way, your payment should arrive on time, and you shouldn't be penalized.

Try that, and if you can, also attempt to pay more than the minimum. You may find that the total goes down faster. If you pay only the minimum, you will have to pay it off a lot longer.
Kathy D. in Sonora, CA

Pay Off Balances with Loan

Have they considered taking out a personal loan from a credit union, paying off all the balances, closing the accounts, and then paying off the fixed-rate personal loan (the fixed interest rate will be lower than %29!)? This will require some discipline and you must close the accounts that you pay off to keep from even tempting yourself.

Editor's Note: If Kelly can control the temptation of adding to her balance, the thing to do would be to use the loan to pay off all balances. However, she should leave the accounts open, so her credit score will not negatively affected.

Take the Next Step

  • Use these Credit Card Calculators to find out: The true cost of paying the minimum, what will it take to pay off your current balance, whether a cash back or low interest card is better for you, how much you could save by transferring your balances, and more.

Share your thoughts about this article with the editor.

Debt Book
Stay Connected with TDS

Do you struggle to get ahead financially?

Surviving Tough Times is a weekly newsletter aimed at helping you stretch your dollars and make the most of your resources.

Debt Checklist

And get a copy of Are You Heading for Debt Trouble?
A Simple Checklist and What You Can Do About It
for FREE!

Your Email:

View the TDS Privacy Policy.

Debt Book