By Charles Merritt, Jr
From heading off to college to marrying the love of your life to taking those dream vacations, life’s biggest moments are often tied to being financially responsible.
While memories of your first dance as newlyweds don’t often include the cost of the band, money is frequently front and center when planning for some of life’s larger events. From early adulthood through retirement, a credit card is one tool that can help you achieve your financial goals while offsetting some costs along the way.
These tips from financial experts can help you maximize financial tools like credit cards throughout life’s milestones.
For many, college represents the first instance of being responsible for personal finances. During this time, some students apply for their first credit cards to cover a wide range of costs such as books or travel expenses to and from school. Experts agree it’s important to start building credit at this age, but only if you can handle the responsibility associated with a credit card.
According to BetterMoneyHabits.com, an important rule for building strong credit is to spend no more than 30 percent of your available credit line. The online resource also recommends that students look for credit cards that offer low interest rates and no annual fee to help minimize finance charges if they aren’t able to pay their bills in full each month.
As people become more established professionally, they often become more comfortable financially, allowing them to pursue their passions. Using a credit card that offers rewards tied to interests is a strategy some young adults utilize. According to a Bank of America survey, 91 percent of Millennials ages 23-29 plan to use a rewards card to help pay for upcoming travel.
Marriage and Parenthood
A seismic shift often occurs when entering the marriage and parenthood stage of life. The individually minded spending of early adulthood transitions to down payments on homes and saving money for children’s educations. These years typically require more financial savviness to make every dollar count as large expenses requiring loans, such as houses and cars, are more prevalent during this stage.
By retirement age, you’ve likely spent decades saving and are looking to enjoy the fruits of your years of labor. While the amount saved for retirement varies greatly depending on your situation, it’s always important to spend wisely during retirement, and a credit card that reaps high rewards can help.
Find more information and credit card options at bankofamerica.com/creditcards.