There is no rule of thumb how many credit cards someone should have. It will depend on how they are using their cards and whether a cardholder can refrain from opening an account they know they cannot manage well.
Starting Off – One Card Should Be The Limit:
If you are new to credit cards, you should start with only one. Over the next few years, you will learn how credit cards work and getting in the habit of paying your owed amount on time each and every month.
If you are new and have several accounts, each account has their own payment dates and the statements can make the learning curve even more difficult. New account holders must understand and know their own spending habits leading to debt. Also, if someone has several cards, lenders might take this as someone who has a habit of overspending.
Upgrading To An Intermediate Or Advanced Cards User:
After approximately one year and you have become more responsible in using your card, you can apply for another card. The second card might provide a lower interest rate, rewards for spending, or an interest-free offer for promotional financing. Some of these cards offer purchase protection policies and travel insurance.
There are some benefits for having several accounts including improving your credit history and reducing debt to credit ratio at the same time. This only works as long as the debt does not increase. These two factors will be taken into consideration when your credit score is calculated.
What Is Considered Too Many Credit Cards?
As a credit card holder, stop opening new accounts when you realize you can no longer manage your accounts responsibly. As a responsible user, paying your bill every month on time in full is key. You should be able to keep expenses under control and not create added debt. Some cardholders may already have too many cards when they start to pay expensive annual fees for benefits or rewards they don't even use.
If you are constantly struggling with your credit card debt, one card might be even too much. You can restore your credit and your finances if you take a break from using your credit card and pay for things using the funds you have available instead of grabbing your credit card.
When you first realize you are having problems making your minimum payments on time, it's time to reconsider your credit card use and choose another payment option instead. You will still be responsible for paying off the existing balance but using other payment methods can stop you from incurring any more debt.
Credit cards are easy for making payments but there must be a lot of responsibility behind them. There are many people who have discovered credit cards are just not for them.
Yoel “Mo” Molina and I am a lifelong resident of Miami, Fl. I am a graduate of Miami Senior High, Class of 1992, Georgia Institute of Technology, B.S. 1997 and University of Maine School of Law, J.D. 2001. I have been practicing law in Miami Since 2001. I am a former training prosecutor in the Miami-Dade State Attorney’s Office. I have experience in jury trials, appeals, and administrative hearings. I have appeared before judges across the State. My experience ranges from civil litigation matters, collection matters, foreclosure, business and corporate, contracts, real estate, leases and employment matters.