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Watch Out for Those Credit Cards

Brenda
September 18, 2008

     It seems like just about everyday that I go to the mailbox my kids, Brian and Brittany, are getting mail to apply for a credit Card. Credit Cards can be a good thing in case of emergencies, if you can pay it off that month and not have to pay interest on the money you used. But if you use it for things that are not essential then it can become very dangerous for your future.
    Today many college kids are getting credit cards and using them for pleasure. When they are unable to pay the high balances, they end up hurting their credit. When they graduate they find it very hard to be able to get a good start with buying or renting a nice place. Many places today are doing a very extensive credit check.
    Recently I talked with a teen who has gotten their self into the situation of credit card debit and wasn’t sure how they were going to get out of it. I explained to them that being in college and working a lot of hours to pay off credit card debit would eventually burn them out and could cause problems with their college education. I also expressed to them that when you are in college that you don’t need the added stress because it can cause grades to go down and then the tuition that your parents have paid becomes wasted and your parens work hard to send you to college.
    I did little research on teenage credit card debit and this is what I found.
    Did you know that more than 54 percent of college freshmen carry a credit card? By their sophomore year, the percentage of students who own at least one card rises to 92 percent.
    Some people feel that credit cards teach teenagers to be more financially responsible, but teen credit card debt statistics indicate differently. Providing a teenager with a credit card could actually teach them to be financially irresponsible—like buying things that they really can’t afford. Unfortunately, this makes teens a target of credit card companies. Marketers have effectively convinced many teens and their parents that credit card ownership is like an initiation rite into adulthood.
    Statistics show that credit cards do not encourage self-restraint in teens. Some may argue that through the use of credit cards, teenagers don’t learn how to say no to themselves. Instead, credit cards promote the 'spend now and deal with the consequences later' mindset. Learning to say no is an important lesson for teens to learn because without it they may be on the road to debt before they graduate college. Teens don’t always realize the excessive interest rates and fees that the credit card companies impose on them. As credit card debt builds, students may lose out on admission to graduate school, a job, or an apartment because of their damaged credit history.
    For some teens, debt can become enough of a burden to cause them to drop out of school. Did you know that 7 to 10 percent of college students will drop out of school because of credit problems. Students buried in credit debt don’t see any other way to pay off their debt and are embarrassed to admit to their parents that they can’t pay it. Instead, they go out and get a job, work more hours than their class schedule can realistically handle, and grades start to suffer.* (For more information go to http://creditcards.lovetoknow.com/
Teen_Credit_Card_Debt_Statistics)
    Think long and hard before you accept that credit card! Proverbs 22:7 says: “The rich ruleth over the poor, and the borrower is servant to the lender”. Don’t get caught in the debt trap.  God’s rich, let Him meet all your needs (Philippians 4:19).
   
 



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