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Credit Card Terms Every Pet Owner Should Know


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Updated: 9/24/2021

It’s great when you can pay in cash for all your veterinary care expenses, but at times either because expenses are large, unexpected, or difficult to fit into your budget at the moment, credit cards can come in handy. When you’re going to use a credit card for these types of expenses, it’s essential to know the terms that the credit card company has put into place. With that in mind, here are some of the most important terms you need to know, whether you have a credit card for veterinary expenses or will in the future.

Minimum Monthly Payment

Each month, your credit card company will send you a statement listing various details, such as the total balance on your account. This statement, which you will probably receive via mail or email, will also indicate how much you must pay that month by a particular due date. Generally, the higher your total balance is, the higher the minimum monthly payment will be. If your credit card offers a promotional period during which you don’t have to pay interest, by paying the minimum monthly payment each month, you might or might not be able to pay off the promotional period’s total amount by the time the promotional period ends.

Equal Monthly Payments

When you make a payment that is an equal amount each month, you can pay off your total amount before the promotional period ends. This payment amount may be more than what you would pay if you just paid the minimum monthly amount each month during the promotional period.

Fixed Payment

Somewhat similar to equal monthly payments, with a fixed payment you pay an equal amount each month. This is part of a promotion that involves a lowered interest rate and makes it possible for you to pay off the amount you owe by the time the loan term ends.

Promotional Period

A promotional period is a certain time period during which you have promotional terms for your credit card’s financing. The promotion might entail, for example, no interest if you pay your purchase amount before the promotional period ends. A typical promotional period may last for 6 or 12 months, or perhaps even longer than that.

Finance Charges

Finance charges are the interest the credit card company charges you each month on a revolving credit card account. Your credit card company will specify how much interest you must pay. The company uses your balance on your account and the APR to figure out finance charges. The higher your balance on your credit card, the higher the finance charges typically are.

Deferred Interest

Some credit cards allow you to pay no interest if you pay off the balance on your account, or certain purchases on your account, within a certain period of time, such as 6 or 12 months. Meanwhile, your account continues to accumulate interest during that promotional time period. If you pay off the balance or promotional purchases, before that promotional period ends, you don’t have to pay interest on that amount. However, if you don’t pay off the balance for promotional purchases within that time period, then after the promotional period ends, you have to pay the interest that accumulated.

Revolving Credit Line

Credit cards usually have what’s called a revolving credit line. The credit card company allows you to borrow a certain amount – to add charges to your account that total a certain amount – and then, once you have paid that amount, you can borrow it again. This process can be repeated over and over again for as long as you have the credit card, assuming that you continue to meet all the credit card company’s requirements such as for paying your bill on time.

Special Financing

At times credit card companies make special financing available to people who have their credit cards, whether they have just obtained that credit card or are not new cardholders. The credit card company will let you know if your current credit rating allows you to qualify for special financing and, if so, what offers are available to you.

Standard Terms

All credit card purchases that are not included in promotional financing options fall under standard terms and don’t incorporate any special financing. Refer to the standard terms that the credit card company provided to you when you first received the credit card to find out exactly what your standard terms entail.

Getting Started

When you choose Vetary as your veterinary credit provider, you’ll complete a simple online application at Vetary.com and will find out whether your application is approved in less than an hour. Our efficient process means we save money, and we then share that savings with you. Vetary credit is accepted at 99% of veterinary practices. We make it easy to provide for your pet’s veterinary needs.

Tips for Using Credit Cards for Pet Expenses

Once you are aware of the terms and what they mean, you also need to know some important standards for using credit cards. For starters, always pay your credit card bill on time each month. Not doing so will probably lead to the credit card company charging you late fees and, if your bill is higher than the dollar amount limit on your account, over-the-limit fees. Even worse, paying late negatively impacts your credit rating.

To help you avoid paying late, set up a recurring payment with your credit card company so that they automatically receive a payment from you each month, or set up the payment on their website in advance of the payment date.

If possible, pay more than your minimum monthly payment. This will allow you to pay off your credit card balance more quickly and not pay as much in interest. Even better, pay off your bill in full if you’re able to do that.

By knowing how to properly handle credit cards and what the usage requirements are, you can successfully leverage credit cards that you use for pet expenses. In the process, you can access much-needed funds that can allow you to provide even better for your pet’s health needs.

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