At some point, you’ve likely been offered financial products and services you hadn’t planned on buying. Perhaps it was in the form of extra insurance on a credit card or mortgage, or a “pre-approved” increase to a credit limit on your card when after calling the bank for something else. Maybe you’ve been approached in store and offered a credit card with reward points, free gifts, or special discounts.
No matter how you receive an offer, you need to make an informed decision when it comes to credit. There are rules Canadian banks must follow to ensure you are provided with information that is clear, simple, and not misleading. However, it is ultimately up to you to ensure you understand what you’re agreeing to – if you don’t, ask for clarification. If you’re still unsure, consider doing more research or asking friends or family for guidance.
Even if it seems like there’s little risk involved, you should never feel pressured to decide on the spot.
It helps to know the standard terms and conditions when signing up for new bank products and services. For instance, even though banks must give you notice, they can:
- close your account at any time
- increase your interest rate at any time
- lower your credit limit at any time
- increase your minimum payment amount at any time
- impose a penalty interest rate if you miss payments
- charge you a fee to close your account
If you have a credit card, it’s important to be aware that you might be offered add-on products or services such as balance protection insurance. For a monthly fee, this type of insurance covers all or part of your credit card balance if you become ill, lose your job, or pass away. This coverage is not for everyone. For instance, if you’re a student working part time, you may not be eligible for benefits in the event of job loss.
Ultimately, banks must get your permission before they can sell or provide you with any kind of financial product or service. Shop around and try to find the best deal that suits your needs.
At SolveYourDebts.com, there are many educational resources to help you make decisions on your financial future. Contact us today for a free consultation.