We have a credit card account. Yes, despite all the talk about how bad they are for your personal finance, we do have one credit card. We mostly use it for online purchases (because debit credit cards are not very common in Canada yet as opposed to US) and paying monthly fees at YMCA. So, the balance always gets paid off, we never pay interest, and overall are more than responsible with it.
It just so happens that I had to put a rather big reimbursable expense on my Visa. Now, usually it’s a fairly simple transaction – I put it in, and before paying the Visa bill, I get reimbursed for the expense amount. This way I don’t end up paying any interest or fees, no big whoop. While usually our Visa bill is around $150 or so, this transaction sent it way over $3,000. Still, no big deal because I’ll still get reimbursed before I have to pay the visa bill.
But what do I get in the mail along with my Visa bill?
"Dear Mr. Financial Underdog,
We are writing to you about your credit account and pleased to advise you that because you effectively managed your account, we would like to offer you a credit card increase."
Nicely done, debt pushers. I can almost see your software ref flagging my account.
"– Hey, this guy usually spends only this amount on average, but this time around he went into stratosphere! Hey, maybe he needs more credit? Maybe he’s in trouble and now paying his bills with his credit card, I wonder how much more business we can get from him? If we’re lucky, he lost his job, and we’ll hook him up with all the credit he needs, just need to make it easier for him to access it. Let’s give him all he wants right now!”
Debt pushers are just like street gangs dealing drugs
There isn’t much difference between drug dealers and debt pushers. They use same approach. A troubled customer is the best customer! Just a different product. And I especially like the part how they complimented me on effective management of my account! When people start putting on huge amounts on credit cards – that’s not effective. Sure, my case is an anomaly, but in most cases it means people are out of control with their credit cards – and those are the best customers for banks, credit cards, and other debt pushers.
I’m not trying to say banks are bad and credit cards companies are evil. They do what they do, and have a place in our economy. But at all times, you have to understand why they are doing what they’re doing. An increase in spending limit on your Visa benefits them, not you. Beware of snakes when you’re playing outside. Beware of gangs pushing their products on troubled customers – even if this product happens to be debt.
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