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Myth Busting: Credit Cards

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It’s a long-held myth that credit cards are the source of all evil because they nurture the inner shopaholic and help us incur debt. Not true! If used responsibly, credit cards can be very helpful.

Credit cards are convenient. You can use them practically anytime and anywhere. To some, the biggest benefit of a credit card is the option for installment payments for higher-priced items.

Credit cards also have benefits besides short-term gratification. In the long term, credit cards can help build credit history and improve credit scores — use them, pay them off and keep them open for a long time to build credit.

Here’s why using a credit card is a good idea:

1. Credit cards can boost your credit score. Using and paying off credit cards help build your credit score — which is important when you apply for a loan to buy a new car or house.

2. There are rewards and benefits. Many credit cards offer airline miles, hotel points, cash back or points redeemable for merchandise or other rewards. If you play your cards right, your rewards can pay for an entire vacation!

3. Your cards have purchase protection. Many credit card companies offer theft and loss protection for purchases made on your card. Some cards extend the manufacturer’s warranty at no charge.

The key is to use credit cards responsibly: always pay your bill on time and spend only what you can afford. If you plan to carry a balance, a card with a lower interest rate may be better than one with a rewards program.

City CU’s Mastercard® offers a low interest rate and a rewards program. Apply today.

City CU also provides free credit counseling to Members and non-members. Learn more here.