Credit Cards: A Necessary Evil

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    Nov 22, 2012
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In society today credit cards are a way of life. Pop culture plasters the media with images of celebrities buying things with credit cards. This promotion has raised credit cards to a status symbol. The most infamous credit card is the black American Express card which has reached a mythical status. The black American Express is the Holy Grail of the modern era. Plastic has replaced paper as the most common method of purchase while checks are virtually extinct. Credit cards are easy to use and have several benefits. Credit cards are accepted almost everywhere and are great for purchasing things online. They are more secure than debit cards and they are great for use in emergencies. credit cards are a really powerful tool but they should be used wisely.

The best benefit of credit cards is that all purchases are insured against identity theft. Debit cards lack the  same level of security. Consumers can purchase goods and service online much more securely when they use a credit card because if their information is stolen or unlawfully used there are protective measures taken. Another benefit of credit cards is that they are helpful in unexpected emergencies. Life can bring about unpleasant surprises that can be quite costly. By having credit available, it helps users pay for things that they otherwise could not afford.

All the convenience comes with a price in the form of interest rates. Each month a percentage of the principal is billed to the credit card user. Based on the user's credit history the interest level could be either marginal or acute. Credit cards are a dangerous gamble for people with shaky credit.  Credit cards are the ultimate temptation. Many fall into a cycle of debt because they can not control their spending when they use credit cards.

The average family today has just under 16,000 in debt. Once people fall behind on payments their interest rates are raised and their debt problems compound. On the other hand when used correctly credit cards can help positively build credit scores. Credit cards are not for the faint of heart, only the wise. Use them with extreme caution.

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Virginia Montgomery is a stay at home mom who enjoys writing articles for Interesting Articles.

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