We’re capping off our credit card interest series with another conversation starter (or ender, depending on the crowd). Read on to learn about the section of your statement that many of us try to ignore – your statement balance.
Your statement balance (or new balance, as described on a Capital One statement) is comprised of the amounts you owe from last statement, plus any new purchases, balance transfers, cash advances, fees and interest charges, minus any payments, returns or credits.
Making at least the minimum payment on your balance by the due date specified on your statement is one of the ways you can keep your account in good standing. But if you want to help reduce interest charges, it’s best to make more than the minimum payment, or better yet, to pay your balance in full.
Your statement is an overview of your account during a particular period in time. If there have been any transactions on your credit card since your last billing period, your current balance could be different from your statement balance. You can typically view your current balance when you access your account online – just keep in mind that it doesn’t account for pending transactions, so your available credit may be smaller (or larger, if you have any pending credits or refunds) than you think.
Tip: If you’re having a hard time paying your balance in full, try to take a breather from spending on non-essentials for a little while and make more than the minimum payment by your statement due date each month. Make sure you know where to find your statement so you can access your payment details, or set up payment alerts that let you know when your statement is ready.
Credit cards can be confusing. But they don’t have to be intimidating. Ultimately, we want you to feel empowered when you use your credit card. And, if that involves breaking down terms that don’t exactly roll off the tongue, we’re happy to keep the conversation going!