Almost every person I talk to has the same story regarding how they got into debt. It starts out with “I was doing fine and then…” and then you insert how some tragic event happened or they just got lazy and stuff started going on the credit card. It seems the majority of people (myself included) never really wanted to get in debt and planned on paying off that credit card. But now that they got themselves in over their heads, credit cards are the bane of their existence.
Having lived with this demon called credit card debt in some form or another for the last 7-8 years, I finally decided start using it to help me. Instead of being ruled by it.
Back in December, I did something I told myself I would never do again. I got another credit card. However, I got this new card not because my others were maxed out (which they were) and I needed more room to purchase more stuff, no I got this card because I wanted to earn as much cash back as I could. I got it for the benefits. So after researching for a while, I found the best card for me, the Discover card. I get 5% back on just about any purchase. It’s awesome.
To use this correct, I had to discipline myself. Nothing goes on here that isn’t budgeted for. Everything that can go on here will go on here. I will pay this off twice a month (because I get paid two a month). Also, I don’t have to worry about if I have enough money in my account when x bill comes in. Because everything else is on my credit card and I pay that when I have the money.
Halfish a year later and I am still paying it off twice a month, we put everything on there (groceries, eating out, gas, dates, etc.), and we are earning rewards! In fact we just cashed in our first $50 reward in the form of a credit back to the card. Why? Because I just bought Nutcracker box seats at half off ($50 a seat!) for December and $50 is coming from our date budget and $50 from this credit. Basically, we got buy one at half off get one free box seats to the Nutcracker. *Boom!* #Hustler
My recommendations for someone starting out with this:
1) Find the best card for the rewards you want. If you just want cash, again, I recommend the Discover Card.
2) STICK TO YOUR BUDGET! Seriously, not sticking to a budget is how you got in this mess in the first place.
3) Pay it off as soon as you get paid. You already budgeted for it, so you know you have the money. Do not wait to pay this off. Making 2 or 3 small payments a month of $300 each is a LOT easier to swallow than making one giant payment at the end of the month.
Don’t pay the credit card company’s interest, make them pay you.