How Many Credit Cards You Should Have for a Good Credit Score
How many credit cards should you have for a good credit score? If you’re one of those people who holds up the line at stores because you’re trying to figure out which of your 10 credit cards to pay with, it may be time to do some consolidating.
How many credit cards should you have open? You should have no more than two personal credit cards and one of those credit cards should be reserved for regular, everyday use — the other credit card should be used only in the case of an emergency. If you have regular expenses tied to work, you might consider opening a third credit card. This way, all the purchases your employer needs to reimburse you for are on the same card.
How many credit cards should a college student have? The ideal number of credit cards for college students to carry is often one. One card will allow them to build credit, but keep that process manageable. With a single card, it should be easy to keep track of purchases, the balance and the due date. That same card will offer the safety and security of federal law that limits fraud losses to no more than $50.
With too many cards, you may end up spending more in total than you realize and with so many bills, you increase the odds of not paying one of them on time. Paying late will hurt your financial reputation, trigger onerous late fees and often result in higher penalty interest rates — not to mention that it will damage and lower your credit score.
How many credit cards is too many? The more credit cards you have, the easier it is to achieve a low credit utilization rate and increase your credit score. Credit Card users with an exceptional credit score of over 800 have an average of seven credit cards and users with a strong score of 700-799 average six credit cards.
Be careful not to apply for too many credit cards at once, though. Applying for a card will result in a what’s called a hard inquiry from the issuer (you get penalized when a lender checks your credit), and too many of these will lower your credit score. You can avoid this by spacing out your applications by a few months to a year.
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