Pre-Approved Visa: Merrick Bank

The other day I received a pre-approved credit card offer from Merrick Bank that promised to double my initial credit limit of $600 to $1200 provided that I hold up my end of the bargain and make at least the minimum payment due for 7 months straight.

It sounded like a great deal and I was ready to jump on it, even at an APR of 24.99 percent. That is until I read the small print that said I would be charged a $72 annual fee just for the privilege. That's right...Merrick Bank would bill me $6 every month for perpetuity no matter what, or until I decided to close the account.

This means that even if I carried a zero balance, I would still be forced to make a $6 payment each month. $6 may not seem like a lot but if you should ever be late making that $6 payment, you'd be charged an outrageous $35 late fee. So, your $6 payment turns into a $41 payment in the blink of an eye. No thank you!

My guess is that once they see that I didn't respond to the initial offer, they'll up the ante with a sweeter counter offer minus the monthly fee and most likely at a lower interest rate. If not, oh well...I have plenty of new credit cards as of late and I'll be just fine.

You might also like: First Interstate Credit Card Offers

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You Know It's a SCAM When...

I get hundreds of questions every month from people saying they received a call from some random debt collector stating that they needed to hear from "either you or your attorney" by a certain deadline or else they'd commence with legal proceedings against them. If you ever get that call then you can safely assume that it is just a scam.

How do I know it's a scam? It's simple. The last person a debt collector wants snooping around in their shady business is an attorney! It's because 9 times out of 10 the debt collector is using illegal collection tactics to shake people down of their money.

The ONLY reason why they'd tell you to have your attorney or legal representative call them back is that when the word "attorney" is mentioned in a live conversation or voicemail it makes the matter sound serious. If you actually did have an attorney call them back they'd freaking crap their pants!!!

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