While credit cards can be helpful for reaching your financial goals, it is important to keep a number of money management tips in mind when using them so that you can avoid the easy slide into debt through overspending. The Equifax Finance Blog shares info about the top ways people misuse and abuse their credit cards and ruin their FICO scores in the new article, “Seven Bad Credit Card Habits.”
All seven should be avoided, so make sure to see the whole list. Three of the practices that you definitely want to avoid are:
- Maxing out a card – hitting your limit on a card is bad news in lots of ways, including a big debt to pay back and a decrease in your available amount of credit. The amount you owe can account for as much as 30 percent of your credit score, so having too much debt can mean a big hit to your score.
- Having too many cards – having too many cards, usually more than two or three, makes it too easy to get your due dates and balances confused, which is an easy way to accidentally miss a payment or max out a card. Keep yourself from falling into this trap by keeping the right number for you and setting reminders to avoid costly mental and financial missteps.
- Letting other people use your cards – remember that every charge on your card reflects on you, so letting someone else use your card is just like letting them use your name and reputation. You are ultimately responsible for the charges, which will show on your credit report regardless of who used the card.
For more ways to keep control of your credit cards and avoid debt, check out the Equifax Finance Blog and follow @EFXFinanceBlog on Twitter!