The Holidays and your Credit

The holidays are fast approaching and with it the media bombards us with constant commercials from cars to stores saying buy now and save 15% and pay later using our credit cards!

The United States is a credit driven society, it is the cornerstone of our economy. If you stop and pay attention to all the radio, TV and news advertisements credit is the one thing you do not have to worry about since the all the commercials say don’t worry about your credit just come on into our store!

The sales term for this is it’s a numbers game, get them in the door and throw them at the wall and see who sticks. Meaning of course let’s get everyone applying for our products and we will see who actually qualifies for it.

The problem is majority of consumers do not understand the damage it can do to the consumers credit score as most consumers have no clue of how credit works. If they do not qualify for something they listen to the next commercial that says don’t worry, just come on into the store. All of these inquiries can compound and damage the consumer’s credit score.

Now what about the store cards where you can save money? While the economy is still recovering everyone still needs to watch their dollars, especially around the holidays where a consumers spending is the highest of the entire year.

But if you stop and think about it, how much are you actually spending in that store? If you spend $150 then you really only saving approximately $22, it is of course a different story if you’re spending over a thousand dollars.

Then there is the discipline factor, most consumers if they have the credit will use that than the cash in their bank accounts and then before you know it, swiping the card here and there builds up to a point that the consumer is overwhelmed and over extended.

My advice to you (whether you want to take it or not) is do not apply for the cards if you can help it.

There was a chart that typically shows up on Facebook at the beginning of every year. It’s a savings plan designed to teach discipline. Every week of the new year you have the appropriate dollar for that week (ex: week # 1 save $1, week # 10 save $10).

The concept of this is to teach discipline techniques. At the end of the year you will have $1,378 saved, so my question to you is if you practiced that discipline and saved that much money would most of you reading this you really need to apply for a store credit card to buy holiday gifts?

Don’t let the banks and big business keep you under their thumb; now that you know it’s best to practice discipline (have I used that word enough?) then the banks will be coming to you offering credit that you can use to your benefit (free miles, cash back, etc) you just need to know how to use it.

Don’t fall into the trap of having 5, 10 even 15 credit cards and becoming a debt victim!

Want to learn more about how credit actually works and how lenders view you? Buy my book “The Real World of Credit” on my website www.waynethecreditguy or go to www.BN.com and get the electronic version on Barnes and Nobles website!