When I look back, it’s a scary thought that I began this goal in 2005. It’s now 2011 and while I’m not quite there and it hasn’t panned out the way I thought it would, it’s a lot better.
My first credit card wasn’t even really a credit card, and it was only for $300. Fast forward several years later and it was in the thousands. It’s not that credit cards are all bad, it’s just that most of us don’t use them properly.
Last month I finally got rid of my worst card, which I’d had for several years (the initial $300 card). I did some debt consolidation and the remanant of it is on smaller card, which is for emergencies.
I have written previously about how I was never a big spender, and it’s true, but I didn’t pay it off and I allowed them to keep giving me increases without paying attention and educating myself on the best way to use it.
The worst part was when I had decreased it by significant amount a few years back and I applied for a small increase because I was travelling and wanted emergency money and they said I wasn’t eligible. Ironic isn’t really the word, but strange yes? It didn’t matter when I was spending it on not so necessary things but when I needed for something important, well at the end of the day, it’s a finance company that wants to make as much money off you as possible.
It’s interesting to think after all the years I had the card when I finally paid it out, there was no thank you, no customer satisfaction questions, not even an attempt to keep me as a customer.
However I’m glad. I want to spent the rest of my life making better financial decisions. Perhaps I should add that as a goal.
Either way, I’m not saying don’t get a credit card, but if you can manage without one, good on you. I know there are many who can.
Educate yourself on your card, keep a spreadsheet and calculate repayments etc.
Think about the real cost of what you’re buying.