What Do You Mean I’m Overextended, That’s Impossible?
If you have credit card debt, this could happen to you. Mark, an unflappable businessman set his business up on a net 30-day basis. That is, he always paid off the people he owed within 30 days, including any credit card debt. That’s why when he went to make a business purchase on his credit card and got declined, he was livid! It was a run of the mill transaction that turned into a hair-raising nightmare. On this particular credit card, Mark had a credit limit of $22,000.00. At the time his outstanding balance was only $5980.00. He had that card approximately five years and had never been late with one single solitary payment. His credit score was in the 800 range.
Credit Card Debt Is Not What It Used To Be
When the sales associate informed him that his $2900.00 purchase had been DECLINED, Mark figured it was just a simple computer glitch. He calmly called the toll free number on the back of the card and spoke with a rep, which looked up his account. Turns out, they arbitrarily reduced his credit limit to $5900.00, (without any notice to mention). Mark was now over the limit on his account. Stunned, he demanded to speak with a supervisor, who informed him that in an effort to reduce credit risks, the company had introduced a new business model. Apparently, one result of this new initiative is… credit card holders are having their credit limits drastically reduced and some limits are altogether wiped out!
What happened to Mark is not an anomaly; it is becoming standard practice for many credit card companies. If your credit line hasn’t been arbitrarily reduced or totally wiped out, you’re either one of the lucky ones, or they haven’t gotten to your account number yet. Or, maybe they won’t touch your account, who knows? I’m sharing this to get you to take preemptive measures NOW! If you’re dependent on that credit limit and they take it away, where will you be? Where will your business be? Where will your personal finances be? Mark ended up having to juggle his business expenses with cash on hand and with his personal cards. In the end, no one at the company could give him an explanation as to why his credit limit was cut.
Credit Card Debt Abuse – Are You a Victim?
As unethical as it may seem, the practice of reducing or altogether wiping out a business or a person’s credit line is currently legal. The new laws prohibiting such action don’t go into effect until July 2010. Prior to that date, you can expect credit card companies to continue to getting away with credit card debt abuse. We call it that because, we’re seeing more and more cases in which cardholder’s accounts are immediately thrust into over the limit status. Once that happens, your credit score will plunge and it will most likely trigger other credit card companies to reduce or eliminate your credit line.