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5 New Year Resolutions For Your Credit Cards

Review your cards' terms and list them in order of balances from smallest to largest. Focus your payment efforts on the card with the smallest balance while making minimum payments on your other cards. Once the first card is paid off, add the payment you were making on that card to the minimum payment of the card with the next smallest balance.

To save money while paying down your debt, consolidate to one or two cards or look for a balance transfer offer that offers better terms than your current cards.

4. Cut out pesky recurring charges

Little monthly charges on your credit card bill can add up to big bucks over the course of the year. Businesses are counting on you not wanting to hassle with tracking them down and cancelling that $9.99 recurring fee. Prove them wrong this year and review your card statement for charges for services you no longer want or need.

5. Monitor your credit report

Finally, according to a recent study from the federal Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, only about 20 percent of consumers requested their free annual credit report in 2011. It's hard to keep fraud and inaccurate information from bringing down your credit score if you never look at your reports. The government has guaranteed your right to a free report from the three major bureaus - TransUnion, Exifax and Experian - each year. Take them up on the offer!

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