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Chapter 7. Getting the Most From Your Cr... > Using Your Credit Cards Wisely

Using Your Credit Cards Wisely

I have emphasized throughout the preceding sections that credit cards have both good and bad sides. Used wisely, they can be an important part of your healthy financial situation. Used unwisely, they are a sure road to debt and lost control of your finances. The following sections contain my prescriptions for credit card wisdom.

Never Charge Anything You Cannot Pay Off

This is the most important piece of advice I can give you. The evil side of credit cards comes out when you start carrying a balance from month to month and paying those nasty interest charges. If you always pay your balance in full each month, you will never have this problem. And of course, this means that you should not charge anything you cannot pay for when the bill comes. When you look at some desirable item in a store, you should ask yourself, “Can I afford this?” What you are really asking is, “Do I have enough cash to pay for this when the credit card bill comes?” If not, don’t buy it, period, end of discussion.


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