May 10, 2011

How many is too many?

This past week I received two different card card offers in the mail which were amazing. The average credit cardholder has 3.5 credit cards (I think it's ridiculous when there are .5 in things that can't be halved.). I have 5 credit cards right now and I really want the two new cards I got offers for this week because they have such good rates but I don't want to get rid of any of the cards I have now because the only one I would get rid of I have had for a long time and it is good to have cards open that you have had for a while. I got to thinking about credit cards and how many is too many to have in your possession. (Was that last sentence too Carrie Bradshaw for you?)
I heard that you shouldn’t have too many or your credit score will go down. I always get enticing deals in the mail for new cards but I usually throw them away. I like cards with 0% APR (who doesn’t?). Before I had quit my previous job I would always pay my credit card bills in full every month because I hate carrying a balance. But after I quit and my cash flow was basically non-existent I have to carry balances on them which was hard for me to do but I couldn't stop spending. I even got a new card during my unemployment with a 0% APR so I could transfer my balances to that one and not have to pay interest. I wondering if I didn't have the 0% rate and I would have to pay interest would I have not spent so much?

I guess while I was buying everything and anything I really didn't realize what it would be like when I actually had to pay the cards. Out of the 5 cards I have only two have balances which isn't bad. I'm trying to not use the other three and just pay for eveything I buy with cash or my debit card. I do regret buying so much and now having to repay it all because I would like to be able to put more into savings now but I feel like I learned my lesson.

Since I got this new job, I have come up with a budget for myself so I can pay down the debt I have and put some into my savings account. One of the best things I have ever come across for somebody that has OCD over their finances like myself is You can link all of your accounts (bank, credit cards, 401K, student loans, etc.) to your Mint account and it grabs the information and compiles it in one place for you. It is such a convinent thing to have so you don't have to go to a bunch of different websites. The website has budgeting tools and goals that you can use to track your spending.

This is a screen shot of my accounts from the website.
As you can see I have a lot going on. There is even another investment account that would not fit in the screen shot. I also have two other bank accounts from my school's credit union but can't be linked to I would highly recommend signing up for if you have need a better way to track your spending and even if you just want to set savings goals for yourself it really makes you think about how can achieve those goals.

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Michelle said...

I have a bunch of credit cards but don't use them. Mainly because I don't have the money to pay them! HAHA I will check out I have a lot of debt from student loans so it would be nice to have a place to organize it all. Thanks for sharing! xoxo

Jules said...

Mint sounds like a great site and I need to check that out. It would be nice to have everything in one place. I'm pretty organized with everything and my budget, but I can always stand to do better.

I think between 5-8 cards is reasonable as long as you're not carrying high balances on all of them.

Heather said...

I'm going to have to check out! It sounds fabulous!

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