How Many Credit Cards Is Too Many?


You are at the register paying for a pair of new shoes at your favorite department store. The cashier asks if you would like to sign up their rewards program to save 10%. You are thinking who wouldn’t want to save 10%, of course you want to sign up. So you sign up for the stores credit card to get a discount on your purchase. Is that 10% off and a new credit card really benefiting you?

Stop and ask yourself if you really need another credit card. The more credit cards you have the greater chance you have of getting deeper into debt. It is important to remember that credit cards are not a form of supplemental income. The annual fees of the credit cards can also add up, so that 10% you saved will eventually cancel out.

Your credit score can also be negatively impacted by having too many credit cards. Which will in turn impact your ability to borrow money. Learn more about how a bad credit score can affect your life in our recent blog post (Little Known Causes for Bad Credit

In contrast, adding more cards can help your score by decreasing your credit utilization ratio (the amount of debt you carry compared to your available lines of credit). However, if you have a lot of credit cards with high limits and you go to a lender to take out a loan, the lender will take into consideration a situation where you ran those credit cards up and what your debt-to-income ratio would look like then.

So, how many credit cards is too many? There are people who are very successful using a single credit because it is easiest to manage one card. Having 3-5 cards is typically not a problem. But if you find all your credit card balances are increasing, that is a danger signal.


If it’s been a long time since you have checked your credit report, give us a shout here at Nationwide Credit Clearing.  Our Initial Credit Report and Consultation is Free of Charge!  Call Today!

Nationwide Credit Clearing

“Home of the Free Credit Report & Consultation”
2336 N. Damen
First Floor
Chicago, IL 60647

Phone: 773-862-7700
Toll Free: 877-334-3296
Fax: 773-862-7703

Credit Repair Illinois

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About Todd Stern

CEO and president of Nationwide Credit Clearing, Inc. Todd has been featured on the cable show “Fox Thing in the Morning” and is the host of the popular TV show “Credit Talk,” a weekly live call-in show in Chicago. You can follow Todd on and on Twitter
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