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My first credit card.

A generation ago I defaulted on a student loan so for my whole life I've paid in cash. It's weird. All these things I normally just stepped past, like buying that video game online or not bothering to apply for any sort of loan.

A whole world opened up, especially in the ease of online purchase department. I've decided to take a close look at these things I think I want because I've seen what a pain credit has been for my sisters.

I can say that I have two decks of Hell ordered from Artscow and on their way here The British and German Army decks.
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Joe Salamone
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Re: An amazing development
Be careful . . . I spend WAY too much money with credit cards. But I gotta have what I gotta have . . .
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Re: An amazing development
Credit cards are evil.

You can rack up huge balances if you are not careful. Especially with impulse purchases.

If you want to order stuff online, use the visa or mastercard gift cards.

If they are stolen, you're only out the amount of the card.

And that way you can keep track of what you are spending.
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Billy McBoatface
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Re: An amazing development
Couldn't you use a debit card instead of cash? I never even wanted a debit card, but my bank kept sending them to me; they seem required with any kind of checking account.
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Re: An amazing development
It's not just the online functionality I am hyped about. The credit is a useful small loan for what I am doing as a game publisher. I'm not stupid, I know what the problems with credit can be
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Richard S
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Re: An amazing development
What is this cash of which you speak?
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Re: An amazing development
thorndor wrote:
What is this cash of which you speak?


Dude, is your avatar a Hobbit reference?
 
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Re: An amazing development
Credit cards are fantastic! You get a lot more protection from fraud and theft than with a debit card. You can buy things anywhere at any time online or otherwise. You don't pay interest if you pay them off every month. You can get cash back, miles, rewards, etc.

Why wouldn't we all want free stuff and interest-free loans?
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Re: An amazing development
Del_Esau wrote:
thorndor wrote:
What is this cash of which you speak?


Dude, is your avatar a Hobbit reference?


Short answer: Yes

Slightly longer answer:

The name:

Thorndor (Thorondor) was the greatest of the Eagles of Manwë.

http://tolkiengateway.net/wiki/Thorondor

The avatar is a picture of same.


The ubergeek badge is written in Tengwar.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tengwar
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Re: An amazing development (edit: now a discussion about the merits and problems with credit cards)
jarredscott78 wrote:
Credit cards are fantastic! You get a lot more protection from fraud and theft than with a debit card. You can buy things anywhere at any time online or otherwise. You don't pay interest if you pay them off every month. You can get cash back, miles, rewards, etc.

Why wouldn't we all want free stuff and interest-free loans?

Although everything you say is true, the vast majority of people do not have the restraint required to pay them off every month.
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Re: An amazing development (edit: now a discussion about the merits and problems with credit cards)
Would you mind changing the name of the thread to:

Subject: An amazing development (edit: now a discussion about the merits and problems with credit cards and also Hobbits)
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jarredscott78 wrote:
Would you mind changing the name of the thread to:

Subject: An amazing development (edit: now a discussion about the merits and problems with credit cards and also Hobbits)


Done!
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A credit card is a tool, like a screwdriver. You can use a screwdriver for driving screws, opening paint cans, or causing a fatal cerebral hemorrhage. The screwdriver is neither good nor bad, it just has good and bad usages.

My view is if you can't afford to pay cash, you can even less afford to buy it by credit card. If you buy something for $20 on your credit card, you'll pay $3 (if you're very lucky!) to $5 a month until you pay it off. If you already have a balance on the card, you may pay that from the instant you buy the item--no grace period.

I bank with Wells Fargo. (Declaring interest, I also own their stock.) I'm not sure about the availability of the option, but WF pays my credit card from my checking account every month. I never pay interest. I cannot miss a payment. I do get 1% rebate on purchases (WF gets several %) and the protection of credit card laws..
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I think of credit cards as borrowing from a future me with more money.

Hobbits are okay, but I wish they would put on some shoes.
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Debit cards are like carrying cash, though a little too convenient. Credit cards on the other hand should be a safety net. I think you all know this. It is nice to make online purchases though. Congrats!
 
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Mease19 wrote:
Credit cards on the other hand should be a safety net. I think you all know this.

Pardon me (nothing personal): [ RANT ]

I do not know that. That's like a high wire acrobat saying, "I don't need a safety net: I've got a disintegration gun!" Great! So you dig yourself a deeper hole and hit harder when you do eventually hit. That's all the credit of a credit card does: it disintegrates money.

A real safety net is a liquid reserve--it doesn't have to be cash, just liquid. Like my WF stock. They pay me to loan them money, not the opposite. That's the way I like it. If I need cash, I can sell the stock in one market day for a few bucks, or if absolutely necessary I can margin the stock instantly (borrow against it) at 7.75%. And that's not some lying intro rate, that's the rate.

[ / RANT ]
 
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Tall_Walt wrote:
That's like a high wire acrobat saying, "I don't need a safety net: I've got a disintegration gun!" Great! So you dig yourself a deeper hole and hit harder when you do eventually hit.

Your analogy is broken: with a disintegration gun of sufficient power, you don't have to worry about eventually hitting. (The heat of the earth's mantle becomes an issue, though.)
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A credit card is not free money. It does nothing to increase the amount of money you have. It is simply a system for moving money around.

Also, a $20 purchase on a 29% credit card is $5 in A YEAR of interest, not $3 to $5 a month.

Also, it doesn't take any special effort to not abuse a credit card. It takes the ability to be honest with yourself and not be a moron distracted by short term gains.

Myself, I've not carried a credit card balance in 5 years.
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apotheos wrote:
Also, a $20 purchase on a 29% credit card is $5 in A YEAR of interest, not $3 to $5 a month.

Oops. You're right in principle, though it would take under 19% interest, because of compound interest. 29% interest would be about 50 cents a month. Although, I'm assuming monthly compounding of interest, which may be optimistic.

And the bank can always throw fees at you: credit card fee, deposit processing fee.... Bank of America for a long time charged you for using the internet or an ATM instead of a teller.

apotheos wrote:
Also, it doesn't take any special effort to not abuse a credit card. It takes the ability to be honest with yourself and not be a moron distracted by short term gains.

Absolutely right! When I think of the people who pay MSRP+40% at the local unfriendly local game store just for immediate gratification when they could .. . could . . . ooo, look at the pretty ad... robot
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As far as I can see, the only way to use a credit card is to:

PAY THE WHOLE BALANCE OFF EVERY MONTH AUTOMATICALLY


You get the flexibility of the credit card, it's consumer protection (which debit cards DON'T give you), and it gives you a motivation not to overspend as you know the money will be coming out of your account.

I have both my credit cards on Full Direct Debit payment. You can even make a profit on top of the 30 days credit by getting one of the cards that pays cashback on everything you spend.
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Tall_Walt wrote:
Mease19 wrote:
Credit cards on the other hand should be a safety net. I think you all know this.

Pardon me (nothing personal): [ RANT ]

.
A real safety net is a liquid reserve...

[ / RANT ]


When I say a safety net, I mean just that. When you're stuck on the side of the road and need a new transmission, you don't want to be there until the bank opens and you can wire money to the tow truck. I agree, liquid reserve is optimal and you should always pay yourself first after paying bills (putting money in savings), but sometimes you need money fast and that is what a credit card buys you.
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A technical snafu left some Visa prepaid cardholders stunned and horrified Monday to see a $23,148,855,308,184,500 charge on their statements.
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My wife and I use our Barnes and Noble card for all of our purchases as it gives points which eventually lead to getting a $25 B&N gift card in the mail every once in awhile.

I pay off our balance every two weeks to make sure we never pay any interest. The end result is that we've gotten several hundred dollars worth of gift cards over the last couple of years.
 
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echoota wrote:
My wife and I use our Barnes and Noble card for all of our purchases as it gives points which eventually lead to getting a $25 B&N gift card in the mail every once in awhile.


Too bad ThoughtHammer doesn't offer cards...
 
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