Avoid paying your taxes with credit cards

Pencil on income tax form

It might seem appealing, especially if you get frequent-flier miles or other rewards, to pay your taxes with a credit card.

But it's an expensive option. For starters, you'll be charged a "convenience fee" of 2.35% to 3.95% of the payment. So if you owe $500, you'll pay at least $12.45 more.

That's more than you'll ever get back, even with a good reward card.

If you don't pay off the balance when the bill comes, your tax payment will start accruing interest charges. In fact, if you're already carrying a balance, interest charges start the day you pay the Internal Revenue Service.

Most consumers are better off asking the IRS for an installment agreement that allows you to make monthly payments directly to the government.

If you owe less than $25,000, you can set up a payment plan online or fill out an Installment Agreement Request (Form 9465).

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