We all know credit cards can be a valuable weapon in your spending arsenal. They can help you build good credit when you’re just starting out, and can come to your aid in the event of an emergency. But if you’re not careful, they can do way more harm than good. In this CU Insight article, John Petit explains that when it comes to spending, there are three ways you should never use your credit card…

To make you feel better: A new purchase can make you feel good, but being crushed by debt probably won’t help. If you just have to splurge, use the cash in your pocket or make sure you’re spending from your checking account.

To pay hospital bills: Credit cards are best when being used on a purchase that you can pay off easily. Medical bills usually aren’t small, so think about how long it could take you to pay off that balance. You’ll probably cringe each month when you see an interest charge added to your account.

To start a small business: Small businesses don’t easily succeed. If you can’t afford the things you need to start your business, maybe find a small biz loan or look to buy used stuff on craigslist. The last thing you want is loads of debt and new equipment you’re stuck with.

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