Is Having Multiple Credit Cards Smart?
Perhaps you have a bunch of credit cards but there are still more slots left on your credit card holder and you’re thinking out loud, “Should I get another credit card?” Which would probably lead you to the next question, “What is the ideal number of credit cards?” And then another question comes to mind, “Is it wise for me to have multiple credit cards?”
Can you guess how many cards does an average person have?
If you answered four, you hit the nail on the head. Truth be told, having multiple credit cards is beneficial — but only to those who know how to manage their cash flow and credit card usage wisely. You know the drill. More credit cards will mean more rewards and more privileges — maybe even travel perks and zero-interest financing.
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Now back to the question — Is it smart to have multiple cards?
There is no straight answer. But as a rule of thumb, when you decide to get several credit cards, check out your credit score and financial situation first.
Some credit card pundits suggest some recommendations before a person decides to get another credit card.
Do you pay your card on time?
If you’re struggling hard and are having difficulty managing a single card, let alone getting another one. It’s best to keep that idea at bay. Wait until you are managing it well and your credit score is looking good.
Now, if you have a favorable credit score and that you tackle your credit conduct well, then you have higher chances of approval for a next card. If you’re responsible enough and you’re in charge of your spending and timely payment, you can open another credit card or two or as many as you desire.
If you decide to get another credit card, you should consider what type of credit card it should be. And if you have the right blend of credit card types. Fix your eyes on the goal — the objective is to save money and to make use of the benefits of utilizing multiple credit cards.
Not to have more ways of spending it. It cannot be overemphasized enough, once you manage your credit lines well, you can get more benefits and you will acquire an excellent credit score. Some of the advantages that you can reap from credit cards are cash back bonuses, travel rewards, lower interest rates, and many more.
If you’re allowed to make the best of the rewards points, having multiple cards is a great idea. Let’s say you buy more food, then you should consider credit cards with top rewards on grocery expenses.
If you’re on the road more often and consume gasoline, go for credit cards with rewards on gas purchases.
There are some cards that actually offer 5 times points on gasoline and huge cashback bonuses on grocery purchases. Come to think of it, this could ultimately allow you to save a pretty penny.
As previously mentioned, having several credit cards will enhance and improve your credit score, but there’s a clause attached to it —- if you manage them well. Now, let’s qualify what managing well means.
First off, make it a point to pay on time. Stay away from late payment charges and penalties. Manage your payment due dates properly. If you find it difficult to pay them on their due dates, you may request the bank to give your billing statement a reset so you can manage your payment schedules.
Another option is to set your credit card to automatically deduct from your bank account like an autopay. In that way, you will definitely not miss a payment date.
Take note of your credit utilization rate as well. To find this, add all your balances in all your credit cards and divide them by the total accessible credit limit. It’s also best not to max it out.
The big pluses in getting multiple credit cards are you can enlarge your buying capacity, your credit history is improved (if you pay well and on time), you will receive special privileges and benefits.
The biggest disadvantage is — there’s a big possibility that you will get yourself into a whole lot of debt. And yes, there’s a clause attached to it — if you are not responsible for managing your multiple credit cards.
In conclusion, just like in any decision making, it’s best to weigh the upsides and the downsides. Having more than one card or having multiple credit cards can be a wise idea — If you use them wisely and manage them wisely.
The answer lies in you.
So if you’re mulling over the possibility of acquiring more credit cards, make sure you check out your finances, your credit conduct, and your habits. Also, should you choose to get more credit cards, make sure you have the correct blend of cards in order to fully optimize the rewards and save money in the long run.
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