Mesa teen creates app to help prevent credit card debt

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By Christina O'Haver By Christina O'Haver
By Christina O'Haver By Christina O'Haver
By Christina O'Haver By Christina O'Haver
By Christina O'Haver By Christina O'Haver
By Christina O'Haver By Christina O'Haver

MESA, Ariz. -- Thanks to a Mesa teenager, there's an app that can help you decide if it’s really worth charging your credit card.

Antonio Ferris said he wanted to create a smartphone app that could help people prevent credit card debt. It took Ferris a year to get the app on the market.

The best part is it’s free.

"I feel like asking for money to help someone get out of debt is kind of hypocritical, and I really wanted to make sure my app was free," he said.

It's called the Cost of Credit Calculator and it's available in Google Play.

"Since I was younger, I really wanted to do something that makes a difference," he said. "Doing something charitable that can help people’s lives without asking for something in return, I feel like that can make an impact."

The 15-year-old said he used the calculus he was learning in school to create the app and worked with a freelance programmer to make sure it was user-friendly.

"If you pay the minimum payment, that $1,200 item could end up costing over $3,000,” Ferris said. “If you pay only $10 more per month, that would only end up costing almost half that -- $1,700."

There’s a settings tab on the app where you can also change the credit card APR to whatever your credit card charges and the minimum percent.

He said he hopes it will help people realize whether they should use their credit card to make a purchase or not.

"A lot of people really don't realize how much just paying a little bit extra could save them in total, especially since some of that money every month goes towards interest and not towards the principal,” he said. "It can help them really consider the savings of paying just a little bit more per month."

Ferris said he hopes to release the app for the iPhone by summer 2016.