Why Americans Should Not Use Credit Cards

Topics: Money, Credit card, Debt Pages: 3 (980 words) Published: August 26, 2010
Why Americans Should Not Use Credit Cards
Helene Fox
Assignment Wk 7 (Rough Draft)
Lowrie Fawley
Axia College of University of Phoenix

Personal credit card debt doubled in the past four years and personal bankruptcies are at the highest rates ever and still more Americans are spending money that they do not have. According to the Nilson Report, February 2010, the average credit card debt per household with credit card debt is $15,788 and the number of credit cards held per family is 3.5. Credit cards are a huge convenience in everyday lives, allowing us to buy products easily online and by telephone and freeing us from carrying large amounts of cash when making purchases in the material world. There is a potential dark side to plastic with some unfortunate account holders getting out of their depth and building up debts that become a problem and cause of worry. The bad thing about credit card use is people never realize how much money they are spending, the swipe of the credit card at the register is quick and easy, but by paying for items with cash, people become more aware of their spending habits. By paying with cash, you can “feel” the money leaving, which is not true with credit cards, where upon flipping a credit card up on a counter, leaves you feeling nothing emotionally. Just as credit cards encourage overpaying for an item, they also allow individuals to buy more than budgeted. This is obviously a situation which is best to avoid and knowing when it is a bad idea to use a credit card can help you to avoid getting into difficulty. Why can’t Americans stop spending money? Are we addicted, in denial, peer pressured?

Keeping debt in control and limiting it only to what is necessary can be quite challenging and this is especially true for those people who hold credit cards. Not only are credit cards empowering in the sense that they allow individuals to purchase something without having to immediately pay but also in...
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