Maintaining a healthy credit score is a big priority for many Americans. With a great credit score consumers can save tens-of-thousands of dollars on mortgage rates, pay less money for car insurance and even qualify for specific jobs. In times of economic downturn, it may be prudent to remove yourself from the credit card spending cycle. Closing your credit card account may not be the best solution as that action may actually negatively impact your credit score. However, there are some smart tips for using your credit card to survive hard times.
Often large credit card debt is accrued by people who needed to use their credit cards to purchase necessities like gas and groceries during rough times. However, that process may end up costing substantially more down the line. If you charge the basic necessities, it is important to try to pay off your credit card bill in full every month or risk paying more than you bargained for in the guise of compound interest charges.
Since it is not recommended to completely close out your credit cards, you can use that line of credit to make small manageable purchases monthly and then pay off the balance in full. If you just use a credit card for one tank of gas a month you should be able to easily afford that purchase, as well as keep your credit history strong.
Don’t forget about credit cards that give rewards. By using credit cards with rewards to pay for all your necessities, you will get gift certificates or even cash in return – which will save you some money.