and a credit card (Vanquis)....
Interested in your thoughts on this....
I had (in the past) bad debt, and some (whish is less now and getting better) debt that I am repaying (student loans from up to 15years ago) and with the new wife we are saving for our deposit now... hopefully we can get £20k in 18months, however my credit worries me.
I get letters from Vanquis offering me credit cards, but to honest I thought they were scam/junk, so just bin them with the pizza menu's! Also put off the massive %APR that the letters indicated
Never had a CCard so not even bothered looking into how they work... is it really the case that even with the Vanquis cards, total monthly balance repayments dont incur and % charges (so £60 spent at the shop will still only cost £60 at the end of the month)?
You don't pay any interest if you pay your balance in full each month, which is what I do as I only put small or one-off amounts on the card which I know I can afford to pay at the end of each month.
For example, where I used to buy something and pay for it using my debit card, I now pay for it with my credit card. I can then pay my credit card off at the end of the month (or even a few days after) using my debit card. I can log into my account online and make the payment that way.
I've also set up a direct debit for the minimum amount each month, so that even if I forget/fail to pay my balance in full, I don't miss a minimum repayment and my credit rating keeps on improving slowly but surely. Obviously if my credit card balance is zero, then I don't pay anything via direct debit.
The APR on "credit repair" credit cards is pretty horrendous (Vanquis is 39.9% and Aqua is 42.9%!) but so long as you are responsible (and believe me after the last 10 years of my life dragging myself out of the debt pit, I am!), and you only use the card for small or one-off payments which you KNOW you can afford to repay each month, then you don't pay interest anyway, and you can't go far wrong. They are by far and away one of the best ways to repair your credit rating.
The more you use the card(s) the better - if you can build a record of repaying on time then it will benefit you.