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Be careful of racking up credit card debt during the holidays

holiday spending.jpg

Just about everyone loves to buy new things and with the holiday season here people are out in droves in Tampa and everywhere else buying gifts and other items for everyone on their list. However, one of the biggest traps consumers can fall into this time of year is racking up big credit card bills, only to find that they can't pay them off quickly once the holiday season is over.

There are several credit card traps people get caught up in, including signing up for new cards to get immediate discounts and spending more than they can afford to pay back so they can get that perfect gift. However, by falling into these traps consumes can not only rack up a huge debt but they can also hurt their credit scores at the same time.

According to one credit expert, just opening up a new account can cause your credit score to dip 50 to 60 points. Likewise, getting a credit check in order to open a new credit card account can knock your credit score down up to 20 points. A better way to spend for the holidays is to start saving up early for those extra holiday purchases. Another helpful hint is to spread your purchases over several cards to keep your balances low. This can also help your credit score.

It’s never a good idea to have too much credit card debt. When debt gets out of control it can be harmful to a person’s finances for many years to come. If a person feels that his or her debt is out of control then he or she might want to speak with a bankruptcy attorney for some professional help.

Source: KCTV, “Credit card spending at holidays can hurt your financial future,” DeAnn Smith and Erika Tallan, Nov. 29, 2013

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