Credit card is the new trend. Gone are the days when people used to pay in cash for whatever they buy. Now, they don’t feel secure enough to carry paper bills everywhere. And, it’s fair too. With all the development and new technologies, the payment system has advanced too. It has given the spenders security and surety about the spending of their hard-earned money.
Today, they prefer to use a master, debit, visa, or secured credit card for the payment. And, if not at a brick or mortar shop, they intend to use an online banking system for whatever they shop for. Firstly, there are endless benefits of credit card payment and to a name a few:
- Cash backs
- Rewards and bonuses
- Card loss replacement
- Universal acceptance
- Cash security
And so many more. But, the conflict arises in whether or not one can get all these benefits from different cards? Or, to be precise, can you have multiple cards simultaneously to double-fold all these advantages? So, let’s find the answer to this and all your other queries related to owning various cards, their positive and negative impact on your credit.
Can You Apply For Multiple Cards Simultaneously?
To answer it simply, yes, you can surely apply for multiple cards at one time. After that, however, the debate starts on whether or not it is a good idea to do that. Supposedly, you applied for two cards in a short span or even on the same day. And, you got the approval too. But, the problem arises when this application portrays ‘red flags’ for your future creditors.
“According to the FICO score model, one request generates one inquiry which can lower your score by 5 points. So, now think about all the requests you’ll be initiating on your multiple cards.”
Moreover, multiple cards will urge you to:
- Spend more to get the maximum rewards of each card
- Apply for more cards to benefit from multiple card promotions
However, doing will affect your score in two ways:
- Your overextending money will make you fall into credit debt
- New credit companies will see you as a risk or may offer you cards at higher interest rates
Multiple Credit Cards: Good or Bad?
As we explained in the earlier section, yes, you can get registered for multiple cards simultaneously. But, we also mentioned a comparison of what it will make you do and how it will affect your credit. So, the question arises: What are the goods and the bad of applying for multiple cards? Or, to be exact, if you have to have multiple cards for maximum rewards and gifts. But, then, how much should you wait to apply for the second card?
|Low debt utilization equals a good credit score||Opening two accounts at the same time can damage your credit score|
|It’s good to have a backup card, especially while traveling||If you’re an uncontrolled spender, multiple cards can be your worst nightmare|
|Benefiting from the multiple rewards, bonuses, and referral gifts||The more the credit cards, the more credit handling you need|
|Security from credit fraudulent||You may spend over the limit on one card trying to maintain the balance of other|
In conclusion, there are almost equal disadvantages as advantages of having multiple cards. But, of course, you need to survive too, and the benefits seem preferable and feasible for you.
The question arises: If you must apply for two cards, how much should you wait between the registration? Let’s find the answer to this in the next section below.
Should You Wait Between Applying For Multiple Cards?
Applying for different credit cards altogether is definitely not a good idea. Also, you should avoid multiple registrations in a short period. So then, when is the right time to apply for another card? Is there a designated time you must wait to get the maximum advantage?
Well, the answer to both questions is vague as there is no such specific time limit to follow. Yes, there is no standard ‘waiting time’ to pause the applications. Instead, the actual timing between applying for multiple cards actually depends on your credit history. For instance, here are some of the basic points that can measure the time you must take between applications:
# You Belong To the Starter Credit Card Holders
It means if you are new to the credit card world and want to build your credit score. Then, you can apply for another starter card to help maintain your positive payment and debt history.
However still, you must wait for at least five to six months to apply for your second card. As like this, you can save your credit history from a hard inquiry hit.
# You Belong To A Poor Credit Card Score Group
It means previously; you weren’t able to maintain your good credit history. And, now you want to start fresh and put some effort into balancing your debt and score. You can start with your current card by start paying your debt payment first by little. Then, followed by a new registration to take it low and slow.
However, still, even if you have started the downpayment of your credit debt. You must wait for a few months to apply for the second one.
# You Belong To Recently Denied Approval Group
First thing first, it doesn’t matter whether your request was approved or denied. What matters is your application. But, yes, the hard inquiry usually happens when you apply. And, despite the approval or denial, the company checks deeply through your credit score.
The best thing is to improve what’s wrong in your history and then reapply for the card. But, make sure you sign up for a credit card that will be beneficial for your credit history.
# You Belong To An Extraordinary Credit History Group
You have got the perfect credit history, your debt utilization rate is low, and you don’t have any bad remarks. Only if you have all these, one or two hard inquiries in a short period won’t affect your credit score much. In fact, the pros might outrun the cons.
Still, you must recheck your history and score if you want to apply for multiple cards simultaneously.
Tips To Avoid Mistakes Between Credit Card Applications
Image Credits: Freepik
You have got the answer to whether or not you can have multiple cards at the same time. You know all the pros and cons of having various cards simultaneously. You know the groups and times you need to check between credit applications. But, still, you might be needing some tips to make sure nothing goes wrong. And, there is no negative impact of those applications on your credit score, balance, and overall history.
To ensure you get the maximum benefits and minimum disadvantages out of your multiple credit card sprees. We have come up with some working tips to make your credit life a happy life. Here you go:
- You must take a gap of 90 days in-between applications. No matter what your intention is to open a new account. To avoid any negative impact, you should take a break between registrations.
- Try to keep your credit utilization ratio at a minimum value. And, that’s only possible if you pay your bills on time monthly.
- If you already own multiple cards, manage them well to keep your credit score and history as positive as possible.
- If you have an exceptional credit score card, apply for the second at a low to zero interest rate. Also, ensure they allow cash transfer so you can get the best from both without losing your good credit.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ’s)
Before we move forward to conclude this thorough discussion, let’s read answers to some of the most commonly asked questions on multiple cards and credit.
Note: After a deep and brief research on professional studies and credit card expert analysis, we have deducted all these answers.
Can my score be increased faster by having multiple cards?
Yes, multiple cards may be helpful to increase your score faster as they’ll aid in keeping a low debt value. For instance, you’ll be able to use the 30% credit utilization value of multiple cards. And, that will help you keep all the cards at a low credit ratio, leaving a better impact on your score. However, according to Credit’s analysis, unnecessary credit cards may leave a negative impact than a positive on your score.
Is it wrong to keep multiple credit cards with zero balance?
It’s not certain if it’s wrong or not, but surely, it can make you look risky to lenders. So, if you ever need to get a loan from your credit company or bank, multiple cards with zero or no balance can harm your reputation and chance to get a loan. To put it simply, having multiple cards with an outstanding balance is bad in the short term.
If I cancel one of the cards I own, will it hurt my score?
It depends. Canceling an older account will definitely hurt your score more. But, closing an account with a higher annual fee that you can’t afford anymore is always the best option. Generally, the cancellation of a card is better than keeping it aside and not using it.
Will multiple credit cards affect my credit?
Firstly, multiple cards can affect good or bad depending on how you prefer to use them. If you maintain your score, you will get never-ending benefits. However, if you fail to pay your bills or even cross each card’s credit limit, it can negatively affect your history. Also, keep one thing in mind: applying for multiple cards results in hard inquiries, which impacts the score.
Is it bad to have multiple cards and not use them?
Well, it’s not necessarily bad. Of course, you can have various multiple cards and not use them all. And it won’t affect your credit score much in the short run. However, the issuer might cancel your registration due to inactivity and failed to use the cards for so long. As a result, it may bring your credit score down to a lower value, which can negatively affect your credit history.
Is there any downside if I apply for more than one card?
To simply answer, no. Having multiple cards is not bad as long as you are paying the bills on time. In fact, it might be beneficial as you can enjoy all the benefits from different cards at a time. According to FICO, having multiple cards has endless perks, which is a sign for you to sign up now!
Is there a downside to register for multiple cards?
As we explained in our earlier section, multiple card registration in a short time is not a good idea. It leads to hard inquiries, resulting in the deduction of fewer than five points from your score. Of course, it’s not much of a downside if you have a good credit history. But, if you’re already struggling, it will only increase your burden.
How many inquiries are too many for credit history?
In general, six or higher hard inquiries can badly impact your credit score. Of course, some of them might get disputed or unauthorized. Still, it is best to keep the inquiries low if you want to maintain the best credit utilization rate. Plus, you can also get help from a credit expert to solve the issue.
We hope, by now, you know it is acceptable to have multiple credit cards as long as you can manage them well. The tip to keep them in your favor is to research the policies of the card company you are applying for. It is best to find the positives and negatives of every card you want to own.
Keep your due dates in check, know your card limit, and don’t overuse the balance to avoid turning them against you.