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How Many Credit Cards Should You Have?

Learn more about how many credit cards you should have at once.

When you look in your wallet, how many credit cards do you see? One, a half dozen, more? Is there a right number of credit cards to have? Or is it a personal choice? 

These are all excellent questions surrounding credit cards because there’s often a conversation about applying for cards, getting approved, improving your credit score, and the like, but not much focusing on the number of cards.  

If you want to learn how many credit cards you should have, you’ve come to the right place. 

Weighing The Pros and Cons of Your Credit Cards

Adding credit card approvals to your list can happen quickly. There’s always a new promotion or creative card that allows you to earn rewards, get cashback, pay 0% interest, and more, but do you need different types of cards to maximize your spending power?

It depends on your spending habits and the terms of the card. 

  • If you don’t use your card often and it comes with a hefty annual fee, you might be losing more than you’re gaining. Our cards have no annual fees.
  • If you use it every day and it doesn’t have any benefits or has a high-interest rate, then you’re missing out on what you could be earning and probably paying significantly more than you should for your purchases. 
  • If you collect cards and run their balances up each time without paying them off, you’re damaging your credit. 

Adding a new credit card can have many benefits, such as increasing your available credit, which will decrease your credit utilization ratio if you use it wisely. 

When weighing the pros and cons, you want to compare the card benefits to how you’re spending and decide if you’re making the most of what the card offers.  

Determining How Many Credit Cards You Should Have

Now, determining how many credit cards you should have is personal. 

To build a good credit history and maintain it over time, you want to have at least one credit card in your wallet that you regularly use, pay off on time, and maintain a utilization rate below 30%. 

Each month that you pay your credit card on time and maintain a low utilization rate, you report positive credit information to the three credit bureaus.  

Your payment history is the most crucial factor in determining your credit score. Ensure you maintain a positive payment history, so you don’t negatively impact your credit score. 

Two common conditions to consider that impact whether you should get a new credit card include your utilization rate and the benefits you earn. 

Utilization rate

If you need to lower your overall credit utilization rate, having multiple credit cards can help you, as long as you maintain a low balance on all cards. 

Earn rewards

Based on your spending habits, if you find that you can benefit from the rewards offered by your card, you can take advantage. These rewards might be cashback, gift cards to your favorite store, or even 0% interest for a period to transfer your balances and pay off debt quicker. 

Is There a Good Number of Credit Cards, Or Is It Based On The Person?

The number of credit cards you have is not as significant as how you manage them. 

As long as you maintain good spending habits, like the ones below, you can have as many cards as you want because it will show that you can handle credit accessibility without mismanaging your accounts. 

  • Pay your bill on time every month
  • Keep your utilization rate at or below 30%
  • Don’t close your accounts unless you’re doing so because you can’t practice good spending, or the annual fee isn’t worth it based on your spending habits. 
  • Only apply for credit cards every six months, so you don’t show too many applications. 

How Many Credit Cards Is Too Many?

You’ll find the answer to this question by looking at your spending habits. 

If you find that you’re struggling to maintain good credit with your current cards by missing payments and running up your utilization rate, you shouldn’t get any more until you’re able to manage your credit better. 

If you find that your annual fees on your cards aren’t worth the money or you can’t afford them, you might want to downgrade your card to one without an annual fee, such as one of these credit card options offered through Listerhill.

If I Have Too Many, Should I Close My Card?

If you think you have too many credit cards or aren’t taking advantage of them as you should and are considering closing them, you want to do your research first. Closing your credit cards might impact your credit, so you want to consider how the decision will affect your credit in the long run. 

Learn more about whether closing a credit card hurts your credit. 

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