By Philip Tirone of 720creditscore.com.
Many so-called experts say that you should adopt a cash-only policy and ignore credit cards. But here’s the truth…
They are dead wrong.
Avoiding credit won’t make life easier. In fact, it will make life a heck of a lot harder. It also won’t make your credit score improve. In fact, it will make your credit score drop like a lead balloon.
If you adopt a cash-only policy, you’ll end up with no credit. And no credit is just as bad as poor credit. You see, the credit-scoring bureaus want to see that you can responsibly handle many different types of credit before they award you a good credit score. If you don’t accumulate a proven track record, you won’t get a good score.
Now, a lot of people who have been through a financial meltdown decide that the only way to turn their lives around is to stop using credit. But think of it like this: Let’s say you took a math test in school, and you failed. Your grade was an F, so you decided to stop taking math tests—to just wipe your hands clean of math tests.
Would your grade improve? Heck no. And your credit score won’t improve if stop using credit cards either. I always say that having no credit score is just as bad as having a poor credit score. They credit-scoring bureaus won’t have any information on which to judge you, so they will think: Better safe than sorry. And they will give you a low credit score.
- You’ll have a hard time getting great insurance premium rates.
- You might be unable to find a job.
- Landlords might not want to rent to you.
And if you ever need a loan (and you probably will!), you will get lousy terms and pay an arm-and-a-leg in interest.
So they next time someone tells you to wipe your hands clean of credit, ignore them!
This doesn’t mean that you should get yourself into debt with your credit cards. It means you should use your credit cards wisely. Keep a low balance (less than 30 percent of the limit), and pay your bills on time every month.