If you're lucky, you have no complaints about your credit cards. You pay your bills on time; you don't get dinged with extra fees or unexpected charges.
But if you're one of the thousands of U.S. consumers who are unhappy with their credit card issuer, you've got a place to gripe. And see what others are complaining about, too.
On June 19, the federal government's new consumer watchdog agency - officially called the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau - allowed a peek inside its big database of credit card complaints. Since the agency opened last July, it's logged about 45,600 consumer complaints on credit cards, as well as mortgages, student loans and other financial products.
So far, only the credit card complaints have been made public - and only those logged since June 1 this year. (More listings are expected soon.) They're listed by bank (Citibank, Capital One, Wells Fargo, etc.), category (late fees, bill dispute, APR, etc.) and whether it was resolved satisfactorily. You can also locate the complaints by ZIP code.
CFPB staffers forward the complaints to the credit card issuer and try to help consumers reach a successful resolution. Naturally, not every credit card issuer is happy these consumer complaints are going public.
But John Ulzheimer, a consumer finance expert in Atlanta, Ga., says those banks should be thrilled. "Now they'll see what customers don't like," giving them a chance to fix problems "before customers dump them for competing banks."
To take a peek or to submit a complaint on credit cards, mortgages or other financial products/services, go to the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau website or call toll-free (855) 411-2372.