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I’m 18 and have no credit and I just want to start building my credit. If I responsibly use a credit card, would this be an effective way to do so? I’m really good with money so I will not just randomly buy stuff and forget about paying the bill. Also, what are some credit card traps I should look out for?

thanks in advance!

6 Thoughts on What’s the best way to use a credit card to raise my credit score?
  1. Reply
    November 25, 2011 at 11:39 am

    Don’t use credit cards. Pay cash. Don’t have a credit score. Listen to Dave Ramsey.

  2. Reply
    Ben 10
    November 25, 2011 at 12:38 pm

    make small balances and pay some off every month let a little bit carry over so your useing a little bit but not to high otherwise you have to pay a arm and a leg in interest

  3. Reply
    November 25, 2011 at 1:10 pm

    Use the card and pay the balance in full every month. There is absolutely no advantage to carrying balances. It does nothing extra for your credit. It just costs you interest.

    The most important thing to remember is to ALWAYS make the payment on time. Payments must be RECEIVED by the due date. If the due date falls on a weekend, your payment must be received by the Friday before.

    Lots of folks will also tell you to only use a certain percentage of your limit. This only makes any real difference to your score if you carry balances. Carrying balances of more than 30% of your limit will hurt your score. But pay off the balances and your score rebounds.

    The utilization rate does impact your score but it really isn’t enough to bother trying to figure out exactly when your card updates to the credit bureaus and then timing your purchases and payments to optimize the perfect utilization rate. Just use the card and pay the whole balance every month. It all evens out in the end.

  4. Reply
    Money Girl
    November 25, 2011 at 1:57 pm
  5. Reply
    stan c
    November 25, 2011 at 2:17 pm

    As of February 2010, you have to be 21 unless you been employed at least 18 to 24 months or have someone co-sign for you.

  6. Reply
    Handsome Rob
    November 25, 2011 at 2:22 pm

    Use the card only for regular purchases that you would have made anyway, such as groceries, gas or utilities. Then make sure to pay your bill in full and on time. Many credit card companies will let you set up an automatic payment directly from your bank account on a set day. This will ensure you aren’t late on payments, thus incurring interest fees.

    Also refer to the FTC guidelines on credit cards (link below).

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