18 Year Old, Ready for first charge card.

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18 Year Old, Ready for first charge card.

Postby LuisB412 » Sat Apr 03, 2010 9:18 pm

Hi yall!

I will be turning 18 on April 12th and am in the process of trying to financially become a bit responsible. This brings me to the thought of trying and building a credit history. As of right now I have a checking/saving account and no credit cards. I do work and make a bit over the allocated limit to be claimed on my parents taxes. I am thinking of the Zync card by American Express as a way to start off. I am not sure though whether they will approve me or not. My mother does have a American Express Gold and a Starwoods Preferred Card. I appreciate any comments if possible!

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Postby FidelityAmex » Thu Apr 08, 2010 12:16 am

For your age I would stay away from credit card. Don't use it, just learn how to use cash and your debit card. I know you will think you are adult now, so you are a responsible person, but trust me I've been through this age before. You will end up in big debts and big mess on your credit report.

The banks are not that nice to offer you a student credit card. They know you will be in debts, and your parents will be responsible for your mess. That's how they make money. So final word, STAY AWAY from credit card for now. Wait until you are 21 years old with a decent jobs.

Keep my words or you will regret.

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I think you should get one but only if...

Postby jeffysdad » Thu Apr 08, 2010 6:06 am

You get one with a limit of $1,000 or less. If you are given a card with a higher limit, call them and tell them to cut it to $1,000.

Some day you will want to buy a plane ticket, rent a car, buy stuff online, etc., for these a credit card is invaluable. Debit cards do not offer the same protections as credit cards.

When you're making more money and have had more experience with credit your limit should go up.

I got my first card just before I turned 18. I got into debt up to my eyeballs within a few years, paid it off, did it again, paid it off, did it again...I'm out of debt now and will be staying that way.

I don't blame the cc companies for my debt, but I wish I had been more responsible. I learned; you will, too, hopefully you'll be smarter at the outset.
American Express: Blue Cash Preferred (groceries, 6%; gas, department store, 3%); Gold Delta SkyMiles (Delta Air Lines, 2 miles/dollar, free checked bag).
US Bank: Cash+ (utilities, phone, internet, restaurant, 5%; drugstores, 2%).
FIA Card Services: Fidelity Amex (everything, 2%); Fidelity Visa (everything, 1.5%).
Chase: Freedom (rotating, 5%); Amazon (Amazon.com, 3%); PriorityClub (IHG hotels, 5 points/dollar); Sapphire (not in use).

*All cards are registered with PriorityClub IDine program for 8 points/dollar at participating restaurants.

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Postby Cucumber » Fri Apr 09, 2010 3:26 am

My first credit card was when I was 18 and never got into debt. I think you just gotta have discipline with spending ya know. And yeah like a low limit of <1000 is most def a good idea. FYI I think now parents need to co-sign on cards if u are under 21.
Stop talking crap about him!

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Postby DoingHomework » Fri Apr 09, 2010 4:33 pm

Use the card for convenience ONLY. Never put something on the card that you cannot pay cash for today. It's hard to get in trouble if you follow that rule.

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Postby Originality » Sat Apr 10, 2010 1:18 pm

use credit cards only for emergency...and make sure you have money in the bank to pay off charge cards cause you need to pay in full.

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I'm 19

Postby iamthebella » Tue Apr 27, 2010 9:32 pm

I'm 19 and I currently have 3 credit cards... I got my first credit card with my bank or should I say credit union (Golden One)? It's was a visa card with a limit of $1000.00. Also I might add that it was a student card. I have had this card for 1.5 years now.

I got my second credit card in March with Best Buy which is with best buy which had a credit limit of 400 and got bumped up to 500 this year... I've had this card for over a year now.

And I just recently got an Amazon gift card.

I recently applied to buy a car, and my credit score came back at 710. (I needed a cosigner though, don't make enough at my job :( )

I think the best place to start is your bank. If you're 18 you're probably going to college so apply for a student card and those are usually good for starting credit. I got it right on my 18th birthday with 14% interest. Pretty sweet for a first card.

I don't recommend Bestbuy or Amazon cards because of the high interest rate, but if you're like me and pay them off right away it shouldn't be a problem.

I plan to keep these cards open for a very long time. I'm going to keep building credit and getting that higher credit score. :)

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Postby Mogul of Pineapples » Sun May 02, 2010 10:28 pm

Back when I was that age, I also go my first card through the bank I had been using. The benefit was that it was easy to get approved for, but the drawback was that they were horrible with raising my credit limit over time. Eventually I canceled the card because I had others opened in the year or two that followed with credit limits of 4 to 6x the amount.

About the interest, absolutely it's best to avoid carrying a balance at that age.One of the myths is that you need to carry a balance for your credit record. Nothing could be further from the truth- what is reported to the credit record is the billing cycle closing balance, whether you pay it in full or carry it is irrelevant.
Disclosure: I am a moderator/paid staff of this site, which does have advertising relationships with some credit cards that are discussed and linked to. Regardless, anything I say is my honest opinion.

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Postby Benny » Fri Jun 25, 2010 8:16 pm

Having worked at Wells Fargo "selling" credit cards (and other banking and credit products), I highly recommend you stick with your bank. Wells Fargo offers a "College" credit card which gives a limit somewhere between $500 and $1500 depending on your relationship with the bank.

Do all the basic stuff you read everywhere - keep your balance below 50% (at maximum - which can be hard on a $500 limit) and pay at least the minimum balance.

Personally, I'd stay clear of an American Express card until you've learned how to manage credit. You'll know when it's time to progress... If not, you'll be in a whole lot of trouble very fast.

Best of luck!

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Postby MTBer » Wed Jul 21, 2010 4:46 am

You either sink or swim. If you're truly responsible, there's no reason not to open up a credit card through your bank and start building your credit scores as soon as possible. After a year, apply for the ZYNC Card, as it appears they require at least the beginning of a good history. Ask your mother to get you a Gold Card under her account, since that will help build an 'in-company' relationship between you and American Express. A seemingly knowledgeable AMEX customer service rep. confirmed this. That's exactly what I did, and it worked. For what it's worth, I also have a car loan, so that may have slightly boosted my scores a little since it adds to my credit mix.

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