Spending money is easy, but spending money can be done even easier when all is required is swiping your credit card. When you use a credit card, you do not see the actual money disappearing from your pockets, wallets, and purses. It is also possible to even spend without the realization that whatever you charge on that card has to be paid back in full and adding interest. Charges start to build, interest fees raise and late fees are assessed at a fast rate. Your excessive credit card use has been turned into massive credit card debt, and now you find yourself in a financial crisis. It is a bad place to be in, but you are by far not alone. In fact, it was reported by the Federal Reserve that the average credit card debt in each household is over $15,000 in this year alone. All this could be avoided if you pay attention to the warning signs that you must stop using credit cards. Keep reading to determine if you should stop using credit cards for good.
WARNING! Don’t Stop Sadness with Shopping
It is possible that you have heard that retail therapy is the best way to mend a broken heart. It is true that shopping can cast away all of your worries and strife, and you feel like the happiest person in the world. That is until your credit card statement arrives or you spend until your card is declined. You have a mended heart, but a broken bank! One warning that you should stop using credit cards is because it can affect you financially and mentally. There have been research conducted to show the impact that shopping can have on a person. The survey showed that about 60% of surveyed participants admitted to purchasing something just to make them feel happier. But here is something you may have not expected—those respondents also surveyed for having high feelings of loneliness and unhappiness. Not only is emotional spending bad for your pockets, but also bad for your mental state.
DANGER! You’re Spending More than You Can
It is very easy to spend outside of your budget when you are getting the primary tool for spending money. Credit cards are equipped with spending limits. Sometimes those spending limits are set extremely above your appropriate spending limit. This means that you are given a credit card limit that you try to reach but cannot afford to reach. For example, if you are on a $5,000 a month spending range, you should not be reaching your credit card’s $10,000 limit. Another warning that you should stop using credit cards is when you cannot stop yourself from spending more money than you can afford to pay back. There has actually been research conducted to determine what causes unnecessary spending when those individuals are not able to afford it. The top reason is because people do not see the negative impact of making nonsensical purchases when you use a credit card versus using cash.
OH NO! You Can’t Remember What You Got
If you have ever been in a situation where you were looking over your credit card statement and discovered some charges that you do not remember, you definitely need to stop using credit cards. This could mean only one thing—that the purchase you made was not necessary at all and you should have stopped yourself from making the purchase. Most credit card companies send out statements monthly, so you do not get documentation of credit card use until later. If you are not aware of the credit card use on your statement and fraud is not involved, you should stop using credit cards immediately.
STOP! Don’t Swipe Your Card for That
A responsible credit card holder uses his or her credit card only when completely necessary. He or she uses it for emergency purchases or large purchases. So, if you find yourself using your credit card to pay for weekly groceries or to fill up your tank with gas, you should stop using credit cards. Do not let the small purchases be the reason you end up in credit card trouble.
WARNING! You Can’t Afford Those Points
There are a very small group of individuals who are able to use their credit card points and cash them in for paid trips and merchandise. In fact, there is a larger portion of the world that is unable to do that at all. So, if you are constantly using your credit cards in an effort to rack up on credit card points, you are flashing a warning sign that you should stop using credit cards. Keep in mind that the people who are able to use their points for freebies have been using credit cards for a long time and have been able to keep up with payments. If you are working harder to keep up with the payments and the points just are not adding, put down the card immediately.
If you are experiencing any of the above warning signs, please stop using credit cards immediately. Do not wait until you are too much in financial jeopardy to decide to not use the card anymore.