Browse Category: Credit Card

Millennials: Afraid of Paying with Plastic? Think Again

Millennials—like any other generation—are wary of a number of things… like cable and sketchy Tinder dates. And, as it turns out, also credit cards.

 

In fact, a 2016 Bankrate survey found that only 33 percent of 18- to 29-year-olds own a credit card, which is an alarmingly low percentage. As a 24-year-old, I understand why younger adults who are still trying to get a good grasp on their finances are hesitant to really utilize that piece of plastic. After hearing horror stories of how unpaid bills destroyed someone’s credit score and cautionary tales of drowning in debt, how can you blame us?

 

My younger self was also scared to use that shiny piece of plastic. I felt more secure with my debit card, and had peace of mind knowing I had the funds to back up my (sometimes frivolous) purchases. Credit cards, in my mind, were like a gateway drug. Would I get addicted to spending money I didn’t have? Would I ruin my life by letting unpaid bills stack up? Yeah, I’ll stick to swiping my debit, thank you very much.

 

But, eventually, my thirst for financial freedom outweighed my fear, and I slowly started using credit cards. I steadily built a solid credit score, used cash-back rewards to pay down my bill every month, and learned how to responsibly use credit cards. Because that’s the thing: You’ll only benefit from the perks provided by credit cards if you pay your bill off on time, every month.

 

Admittedly, that can be easier said than done. To remind myself to use my credit cards responsibly, I would stick Post-It notes all over my planner, reminding me to pay that dang bill. I would slide my credit card in the back slot of my wallet whenever I went out for a night of drinking to help curb the temptation of spending more money than I had. I would constantly stress over due dates, balances and credit utilization ratios.

 

However, when it comes to adulting, there are just some things you have to boss up and do. Like figuring out what a 401(k) actually is, scheduling your own doctor’s appointment and eating a vegetable every now and then. I know… ick.

 

Teaching yourself how to use credit cards responsibly (and why they aren’t as scary as they might sound) is one of those adult lessons they often don’t teach in school. It’ll take a little patience, organization and self-discipline. But once you do figure out a system that works for you, and which credit cards give you the most bang for your buck, your credit score will climb and your savings will skyrocket.

 

Now with Debitize, credit card beginners have a tool that does all that hard work for them (I swear, Gen Z is so spoiled!). My advice? If you’re a credit card newbie, sign up STAT, and start plotting how you’ll use all those rewards you’re about to rack up from finally paying with plastic.

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About Sarah Berger, The Cashlorette

Sarah Berger

 

Sarah Berger is the author of The Cashlorette (a Bankrate Inc. company), a personal finance blog for young women. The Cashlorette’s mission is to empower young women to live the life they want, without sacrificing savings or going into debt.

 

Credit card - Credit score

Quiz: How Much do you Really Know about Credit Score?

Your credit score is undoubtedly one of the most important aspects of your personal finance portfolio. It has an impact on your ability to secure a home loan, auto loan, and affects your credit interest rate, among other things. It’s important to ensure you have a solid foundation of knowledge about this score so you can achieve your goals.

Take this credit score quiz to test your credit knowledge. To see if you answered correctly, just skip to the end to see the answers.   Continue Reading

Do You Know the Difference between Current Balance and Statement Balance? (You Should)

It’s one of the more confusing things when it comes to your credit card – the difference between current balance and statement balance.

When you check your credit card balance, you’ll typically see two different numbers – a current balance and a statement balance. What’s the difference? And how much do you actually need to pay to avoid interest fees? 53 percent of Americans don’t “completely understand” their credit card terms – don’t be one of them!

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First Credit Card

The Ultimate Guide to Your First Credit Card

Are you applying for your first credit card? Don’t worry – we’ve got you covered!

You finally realize you need a credit card – this is a big milestone in your financial life. Your first credit card plays a huge part in building a strong credit history, which makes it even more important to pick the right one.

It’s easy for you to feel lost when the options seem endless. After all, you will have to compare APR, annual fees, minimum payment, transaction fees – things that you might not be familiar with. Fret not, we’ll explain it all here.

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