According to a survey from The Ascent, 10% of respondents said that they had six or more credit cards. While having multiple credit cards can pose problems for California residents, there can also be benefits to having multiple cards. One of the key benefits is the ability to quickly raise a credit score as an individual will make multiple payments over a short period of time.
The more cards that a person has, the more credit that an individual has to use. Ideally, a person will use no more than 30% of a given credit line and no more than 30% of the total credit line across all open accounts. Having multiple cards can make it easier to handle a financial emergency even when an individual doesn't have any money in the bank. A final benefit is the ability to get more cash back or rack up other rewards faster.
There is no magic number of credit cards that a person can responsibly manage. The key is to not accumulate more debt than can be repaid in a reasonable amount of time. Individuals should analyze their finances and spending habits before applying for a credit card. Doing so can minimize the chances of missing a payment or using too much of the credit that a lender makes available.
Filing for bankruptcy may be an option for those who are struggling to pay down credit card or other debt balances. In a Chapter 7 proceeding, balances may be discharged without the need to make future payments. In a Chapter 13 proceeding, payments will be made to creditors per the terms of a plan that a debtor creates. An attorney may help an individual create a payment plan or talk more about the benefits of filing for bankruptcy protection.