More than half of adults in Ireland own a credit card. A substantial six in ten however don’t know what interest rate they pay. This is despite the fact that most credit card owners use their plastic very frequently. The majority of adults tend to use their cards every month for ad hoc spending, rather than for one-off purchases throughout the year. The findings were revealed in a new national survey commissioned by the Irish League of Credit Unions (ILCU).
Close to three quarters of adults in the survey felt that credit card companies don’t do enough to explain how interest rates work. More than two thirds agreed that the general public lacks understanding of how credit card interest works. It’s understandable then that many don’t know where to turn when they can’t figure out why the interest continues to mount on each credit card bill.
Michael Boland, Lending and Business Development Manager says that First Choice Credit Union can help: “Our friendly staff are always available to talk about complex financial terms and ensure that our members fully understand any financial product they avail of. In fact, we would encourage anyone struggling with their credit card bills in our area to come in to us for a chat and see how we can help. We know there is a worrying lack of knowledge among credit card users about both the rate of interest being charged, and how the interest actually works. Part of our ethos at the credit union is financial education, so anyone struggling to come to grips with credit card interest, or other financial issues, is welcome to approach us for guidance.”
Michael continued “For those who feel they might rely on their credit card too much, or think they have no other option but to use credit card finance, we would encourage them to speak to us about a credit union loan. Interest rates on our loans are far better value than even the lowest interest rate on a credit card in Ireland. Our loans are approved quickly and terms and conditions are straightforward and transparent, with no hidden fees. Our friendly loan officers are always more than happy to take the time to go through all the finer details with the borrower and ensure they full understand monthly repayments and the total cost of credit.”
In addition, First Choice Credit Union also offers a debt consolidation loan. The product aims to help members refinance high interest debts and combine all of their debt into a single, straightforward payment at a fair and reasonable rate*. A restructured payment like this can ease pressure and make it easier for people to get on top of their debt and manage it in a way that suits their everyday lives.
Michael continued “As we make decisions locally, we are happy to take the time to get to know the individual circumstances of all of our members, and so we can work with each individual borrower to structure loan repayments in a way that works best for them. I would strongly encourage anyone in need of financial education or assistance to speak with us here at First Choice Credit Union.”
*For a €5,000 variable interest rate loan over 3 years, with 156 weekly repayments of €38.16, an interest Rate of 11.95%, and a representative APR of 12.68%, the total amount payable by the member is €5,951.68.
For further information please contact our lending team on 094 9022969, email us at firstname.lastname@example.org , apply online below or drop into any of our branches in Achill, Balla, Ballyhaunis and Castlebar.