There are plenty of advantages credit cards offer, and you won’t run out of reasons to believe so when you’re browsing the Internet. How can you resist the sheer convenience anyway? With access to local and international stores, off and online, owning a credit card for the greater populace is a must.
However, impractical use of your credit card could lead to something terrible. Here are 7 examples of what could happen when you don’t use your credit card properly:
It will Accumulate into a Massive Debt
When has debt ever been a good thing? It’s a constant drain on your money and patience. Debts of this size often happen when you miss your due dates or pay only monthly minimum fees for your credit card charges.
To avoid this, take only two months or less to settle your credit for huge purchases, and make it a point to pay (even just a little) above the minimum fee every month.
It becomes an Addiction
You know a certain trait addicted people share? They don’t know they’re addicts. The same thing happens to you with prolonged irresponsible credit card use. You unknowingly live beyond your means and spend more than what you actually earn. When your credit limit is increased in particular, it will fool you into thinking you have all the spending power in the world to exhaust—which you don’t.
Though you could expect relapses when you try changing your ways, the best solution is to prevent the addiction in the first place. Make a budget, teach yourself to stick to it, and ultimately rein in and control your shopaholic tendencies.
It makes you unhealthy
Unlike dealing with a post-breakup where you get depressingly fat because of comfort food and stress-eating, your on-going relationship with your credit card does the same thing without even breaking your heart. That’s right: your credit card makes you unhealthy.
In the Journal of Consumer Research (2011), they said credit cards “weaken impulse control,” which often leads to unhealthy food purchases. Say, if you’re out with friends and you feel hungry, need a smoke, or a drink, it’s so easy to just swipe your card and indulge.
Using your credit card for groceries, lavish restaurants, and vices is never a good idea, so if you’re not making a planned purchase, it’s best to leave your credit card in your sock drawer.
It won’t give you the Chance to Save Money
At all. No matter how hard you try to save, everything you earn will go into paying your debt.
To attempt to save, don’t set an all-too-high target to save for while you’re working on lessening your debt. Start small, with coins and small bills. As much as it hurts to know you’ve no savings safety net yet, remember that being debt-free is your first priority.
It will Ruin your Credit Reputation
Applying for a mortgage, a new credit card, a new mobile plan, or buying a new car might become a tad difficult if you’re having credit card troubles. Companies require proof of billing or bank statements to prove your identity and your ability to pay your bills.
Think about your plans for the future before you use your credit card for things you merely want and almost always never need.
It will generate unwanted Calls from Debt Collectors
Because they will call you over and over until you respond and pay your bills. It’s their job to collect what you owe, and they don’t care if someone in your family is sick, or if your salary came in late.
Maintain a good credit reputation to save yourself from this particular suffering. If you still end up stuck in this situation, don’t make promises you can’t keep. Don’t lie your way out of these situations. Instead, work on your debt, apply for zero interest balance transfers, or for a last resort—file for bankruptcy.
Keep the necessary documents or bills safe, record conversations or meetings with the collector, and consult a lawyer to know how you could protect your rights. Remember that debt collectors don’t have any right to abuse you.
It doesn’t Really End
You’ll get new, more tempting offers (right after you’ve looked away from the promo of a lifetime). You’ll see new items (you would die to have). You’ll have countless personal debates about the pros and cons of owning a credit card. It will be an endless problem you’ll find yourself dealing with but won’t be able to resolve.
When you’ve had a terrible experience with your credit card, and you sincerely call it evil, you’ll notice that while you’re still suffering or after you’ve gone a particularly bad patch—it doesn’t really seem to end. The cycle is endless. Your irresponsible credit cards use will continue to haunt you and more often than not, you’ll end up making the same mistakes—if you don’t do something to stop it now.
The only way to avoid these series of unfortunate events is to make sure you practice responsible and practical spending. Don’t let your credit card make the worst of your financial situation. Be a wise credit card holder and your credit card will never turn evil on you.