Financial decisions are hard to make because they can change the life of the person. That is why people take some time to think about it before acting. One of the first financial decisions that people have to make is the request and use of a credit card. If you are a teen ager one of the financial decisions that you have to make is getting a credit card. In that case you should be thinking about when to get it. In this article we are going to talk about the best age to get a credit card and that will answer that question
What is the ideal age to get a credit card according to people?
According to a survey made by Bankrate; most part of Americans thinks that 22 is the ideal age to get the first credit card. However, that age is a bit too high because teenagers may need credit cards when they start college or when they get the first job once they are out of high school. That makes us think that the age should be lower. In fact, some people say that the ideal age is around 18 years old.
But, according to the survey it is 22 and that may be because Americans think that before 22 is too early to manage debt. That is an important point because people should have some idea about how to use a credit card a manage debt before getting one. However, the age that people see as “ideal” now is lower than it was before which means that people is prepared earlier to get a credit card. But there is a legal limitation for the age of getting a credit card.
How old do you have to be to have a credit card?
The minimum age to get a credit card is 18 according to the law. But it won`t be simple because you have to prove that you have a source of income from a job (not from your parents) in order to pay the debt. And there are other options like secured cards that allow you to use it like a credit card. But, what if you are under 18 and want to get a credit card?
If you are under 18 and you want to get a credit card you will need to have an authorized user from an adult`s credit card. For example, if you father or mother has a credit card they can give you an authorized user of their credit card to you and you can use it. It is like an extension of the credit card of one of your parents. They usually have a low credit limit and you can use it as a regular credit card.
What is the “ideal” age according to experts?
Some experts say that the ideal age to get a credit card is as soon as you can. But, why should you get a card as soon as possible? Because a credit card will allow you to start practicing the use of a credit card and knowing how to make financial decisions correctly. So, if you can have an authorized user of one of your parent`s credit cards you should start using it and you learn about how to make financial decisions and how to manage your finances. But make sure to start with small amounts of money so you don`t get in any trouble.
However, that may represent a risk and if you don`t want to take any risk you should look for the opinion of other experts. Some of them say that there is no ideal age and the decision depends on the financial situation of the person. For example, if you are 25 years old and you have a job that gives you a regular or good financial situation then you will be able to get a credit card. You need to have a good income in order to get a credit card and use it without worrying about a late payment. That will allow you to manage correctly your finances and take less risk
In summary, there is no agreement among experts about an “ideal” age to get a credit card. It will depend on the person and how capable is to manage their finances. It is recommended to start with a credit card with low credit limit or a secured one. That will allow you to prevent a late payment that will impact your credit score and credit history. Those instruments are ideal to start building a credit history so you should not miss the chance to have a good one.
Obstacles to get a credit card when you are young
There are more conditions and obstacles to get a credit card now than before. That is partly because of the restrictions of credit cards for those who are under 21. Those people will need to have a co-signer or an authorized user from other credit card and that may not be easy especially if the parents don`t want to do it. And that is a problem for people under 21 because they may not get a good financial instrument which can be helpful to buy thing for high school or college.
However, the most important obstacle to get a credit card when you are young is the bad or non-existing credit score and credit history because the card issuer will make the decision based on it. There are some options in the market for people with that condition and they are mostly secured cards or credit cards with low credit limit and high APR. Make sure to check different options before making a decision.