It is important to establish credit if you plan to buy a home or automobile some day. Credit cards also provide a means of reserving a hotel room or obtaining cash while you’re traveling.
If you are a college student, recent graduate, or a nonworking spouse, you can begin to establish credit by opening a savings or checking account in your own name. You can then apply for a department store and/or oil company credit card. Having someone else co-sign a loan for you will also get you started.
Creating a positive credit history for yourself requires using your credit card intelligently. Following are some dos and don’ts to help you manage credit effectively:
• DO NOT charge more than you can easily pay off in a month or two.
• DO NOT be fooled into paying just the low minimum amount listed on a bill. Credit card issuers make money on interest; there’s nothing they’d like more than to have you stretch out payments.
• DO consistently pay your bills by the due date.
• DO use credit for larger, durable purchases you really need, rather than non-durables, such as restaurant meals that are better paid in cash.
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Securities offered through LPL Financial, Member FINRA/SIPC. Advisory services offered through Wealth Enhancement Advisory Services, a registered investment advisor.