June 25th

Having credit is a good thing. Some day you may need a loan to buy a house or a car. With zero credit, you may not be able to get a loan, period. You want to build credit history, good credit history. You want to show the credit reporting agencies that you are on on-time payer, every time over a period of years. That will give them the confidence to give you a mortgage, because they know you will pay it. I started out with a student credit card that had a limit of $1,000. I would buy a few things with it, especially things online, and used cash or check for everything else. I learned to pay the FULL amount every month, so that I never pay interest. Now, my limit is much higher, and I put nearly every purchase I make on the card, because I get cash back. I have always paid the credit card bill completely at the end of every billing cycle. This is even easier now with auto-pay options. You have to be careful! The plastic in your wallet is not free money, and forgetting to pay your bill, or not having enough in your bank account to pay the bill can really hurt your credit.

June 25th

When getting your first card, you should set a low limit, so that you're not tempted to buy something expensive and ruin yourself from the beginning. Learn to be disciplined within the bounds of the low spending limit. Make sure your card does not have any fees associated with it. Some card companies will give you more cash back, but with an annual fee. I highly recommend a card that provides cash back, because why not? As long as you're not spending money because you know you're going to get cash back... I hope this helps.

June 26th

My freshman year of college I used my debit card for everything. Then around Christmas time the details got stolen and my checking account was compromised. It took a few weeks to get it sorted out and I never got a complete refund, the bank was less than helpful. After that I got a credit card and started using that instead of my debit card for everything except cash withdrawals. I’ve had credit card numbers compromised twice since then and both times it was very straightforward to deal with and my checking account was safe. So my advice: get a card, use it instead of your debit card, don’t buy what you can’t afford, pay it off every month. I like chase and American Express, but that’s just an opinion, nerdwallet is a good resource for making a good choice

June 27th

I like the idea of requesting a small credit limit to start. There are also secured credit cards that you could get, which are backed by a deposit. Check it out at your bank or credit union. Credit cards are handy, but some may find the discipline of paying the full balance off monthly to be hard. The key is that you want to live within your means & earn interest from saving & investing rather than paying interest on debt. When buying a car, save up & pay in full- I’ve always done this. I hear there are ways to get house loans through manually underwriting without a credit score. I commend your efforts with living debt free & receiving scholarships!

June 28th

If you're planning to never go into debt (including a mortgage) then I wouldn't bother with a CC - it would just make going into debt that much easier.
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