This is the craziest story you’ll read all week: Man Has 1,497 Credit Cards via ABC News
1,497! Can you imagine? With a credit line totaling $1.7 MILLION too. Just insane.
And he keeps adding to it…
In fact, he literally holds the Guinness World Record for owning the most (valid) cards out of anyone! A bet that started over four decades ago that never quite ended, haha… you can guess who’s winning ;)
And if you’re wondering about his credit (which I know you are), here’s what he says:
It’s nearly perfect. I have a nearly perfect credit score. I only use one card and I pay it off at the end of the month. But you should see the length of my credit report – wow!
How do you even manage all that??? I can barely stay on top of my TWO cards, haha…
Which brings me to the actual *point* of this post. Other than helping you to spit out your coffee ;)
Do you know how many cards you own, and where they are? And most importantly, do you know WHY??
I assume none of you are trying to go after this guy’s record, but having a system in place to manage it all is key regardless. And hopefully your system is tight just like his!
Personally, I only like having two cards: one for personal expenses, and one for business. I do have a third open simply to hold onto my good credit history over the years (and to max out my credit available, but not used, @$65,000 to help pump up the score even more), but I’ve long since realized that I work best keeping my finances as simple and streamlined as possible. Even if I don’t earn millions in cash back or miles chasing new credit cards all over… If that’s your game, great, just make sure your system matches up with your goals :) It’s okay not to want to be a travel hacker!
(And if you do want to be one, check out this article my boy Brad did for us last year – Travel Hacking 101. He’s a bad ass when it comes to milking rewards out of cards… and shares his system too.)
If you don’t know how many cards you have, or where they are (or what the balances/interest rates/due dates are), please – for the love of all things finance – STOP reading this right now and go find out!
Open up a new spreadsheet, and create five columns:
- Name of credit card (ex. Amex)
- Balance left
- Interest rate
- Minimum monthly payment
- Due date
(EXTRA CREDIT: Add a tab where you store usernames/passwords to make it easy to update later. And then make sure to password protect the spreadsheet! (Which is easily done in Excel))
Similar to tracking your net worth, you have to KNOW where all your accounts are to manage it efficiently. And seeing it all in one spot is POWERFUL too!! Scary at times, but powerful…
This will also help you figure out which to kill off first too if you’re in debt. Maybe you choose the snowball/motivational method of knocking off the one with the lowest balance first and move up from there, or maybe you go the financially smarter route of wiping away the one with the highest interest rate first. Either way, seeing what you’re dealing with is important. And then YOU get control over them, vs them controlling you.
All this to say know what accounts you own and why. If you’re happy with everything, pat yourself on the back and consider these three minutes you just spent reading this a waste :) If you’re not, make this week the week you get squared away once and for all. You’re probably still working on your NY’s resolutions right? Was money on it? Hurry up and do it before the motivation fades!!
Curious now to see how many cards y’all own, and what your total credit lines open are too? Let us know in the comments below so we can gawk and have some fun! No judging of course, as always, but cool to see how peoples’ systems are set up… Especially around money.
Share some of the tricks and hacks you rock too so we can learn from them while here!
Hat tip to Payoff.com for passing over this world record holding gem… what a riot…
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PS: If you don't trust yourself with another credit card, ignore this! This strategy is to help you get out of debt quicker, not risk adding more to it.