Credit cards can do you a lot of good — and even put more money in your pocket.
- Credit cards are often regarded as a dangerous financial tool.
- In reality, there’s much to be gained financially by charging expenses on a credit card.
You’ll often hear that it’s important to proceed with caution when using credit cards. And there’s definitely truth to that.
Some people rack up credit card balances when emergency situations arise and unplanned expenses hit. But others rack up balances by overspending on credit cards. And carrying a balance could mean losing a lot of money to interest over time.
While it’s true that credit cards can cause you to lose money, they can also cause you to gain money. Here are a couple of ways you might see your savings grow thanks to your credit cards.
1. You can score cash back on your purchases
The beauty of credit cards is that they reward you for the purchases you were already planning to make. The groceries you buy every week? Those could translate to serious cash back (especially these days, with food costs being so high). Those weekly gas station fill-ups? Those, too, could put cash in your pocket.
Better yet, many credit cards offer bonus cash in specific categories. While you might generally score 1% cash back on your purchases, you may be eligible for 3% cash back at the pump. In fact, it’s a good idea to coordinate your credit card usage to capitalize on opportunities like that.
2. You can snag a sign-up bonus
Many credit cards offer sign-up bonuses that put a pile of cash in your pocket for spending a certain amount of money within a few months of opening a new account. If you have larger purchases coming up, it pays to see what offers are out there.
Imagine you’ve been saving money to furnish the home you purchased last year and intend to spend around $3,000 on a dining room set and some couches for your living room. If you come across a credit card offer for a $250 sign-up bonus for spending $3,000 within three months of opening your account, that should be a pretty easy offer to snag.
Even if you don’t have a major purchase on the horizon, you might still manage to claim a sign-up bonus with a lower …….