Sure enough, the news channels were right. Letters have showed up from the credit card companies announcing all sorts of changes to our terms before new federal regs hit ’em early next year and seriously cramp their style.
How badly am I going to get screwed, I wondered, as I started opening the mail. Well, as it turned out, after sorting through all the pages of fine print, Bank of America isn’t going to change my existing, highly cherished 9.9% fixed rate — as long as I keep my nose clean. This assumes, of course, that I correctly interpreted the three or four pages of terms and explanations, and didn’t overlook anything.
Dear old Capital One, however, was another story. Aren’t they always? I’ve been ranting about them for years and now I get to rant some more. Whee! In their fine print I discovered that I’d missed some fine print earlier this year that changed my rate to a “promotional” rate, which of course was higher than my previous rate (like taxes, credit card rates only go up). Now, it’s always been my understanding that a promotional rate is one that goes with a particular promotion or special offer, and that if you don’t partake in said offer, said promotional rate doesn’t apply to you. Once again, Cap One and I seem to have different ways of interpreting things. Anyway, the bottom line is that the 9.9% fixed rate I had a couple of years ago that they arbitrarily changed to a 15.9% variable rate, and then earlier this year changed to a 17.9% promotional rate, is going to become my new purchase rate. Variable, I assume; I forgot to read that part. And to celebrate, they sent me yet another book of those damn credit card checks that I have to shred to make sure no one else tries to use them.
I quit using that Cap One card when they jacked up my rate two years ago, and they haven’t done anything yet to convince me I was wrong to do so. Meanwhile, BoA, despite all the bad things you keep hearing, seems to be treating me fairly and I continue to maintain a steady, low, revolving balance with them. I’ll drop them in a New York minute (way fast for an Okie) if they mess with me.
P.S. Okay, I’m definitely killing the WordPress proofreader. It just told me that in my last line above, I used the wrong article: “an Okie” should be “a Okie.”