Should i get a credit card?

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Fifi5
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I am currently living with my parents and gonna start uni this september (which has a study abroad year). I am really planning to get my own place in the next 5 years o so and I heard building a good credit score is good for mortgages and loans. I have a part time job at Greggs, but i'll probably reduce my hours when start uni.

Would it be a good idea to get a credit card, possibly a student credit card instead?
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HoldThisL
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you don't need a credit card for a good credit score, although it does help to show you're responsible, and you have to be careful with one. since you're not in a full time (or even necessarily regular) job, i don't think this is a great idea and you might not be accepted for one on that alone

are you taking about getting a place via buying or renting? you don't need a great credit score to rent, and 5 years wouldn't be very long to save up
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Fifi5
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(Original post by HoldThisL)
you don't need a credit card for a good credit score, although it does help to show you're responsible, and you have to be careful with one. since you're not in a full time (or even necessarily regular) job, i don't think this is a great idea and you might not be accepted for one on that alone

are you taking about getting a place via buying or renting? you don't need a great credit score to rent, and 5 years wouldn't be very long to save up
i'm thinking of buying a place, I have already saved a bit in my gap year and hoping to keep my good habits up in the coming years.
What other methods would you suggest to build a credit score?
Last edited by Fifi5; 1 month ago
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HoldThisL
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(Original post by Fifi5)
i'm thinking of buying a place, I have already saved a bit in my gap year and hoping to keep my good habits up in the coming year.
What other methods would you suggest to build a credit score?
having bank accounts in good standing, using but not misusing an overdraft, and sometimes having regular payments (like subscription services) can help
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𝓖𝓱𝓸𝓼𝓽𝓵𝓪𝓭𝔂
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(Original post by Fifi5)
I am currently living with my parents and gonna start uni this september (which has a study abroad year). I am really planning to get my own place in the next 5 years o so and I heard building a good credit score is good for mortgages and loans. I have a part time job at Greggs, but i'll probably reduce my hours when start uni.

Would it be a good idea to get a credit card, possibly a student credit card instead?
We started off with eldest having her own mobile phone contract and we pay it off to build a credit rating. Also having a student bank account.
Shes just got a credit card at easter (shes first year uni) and now using it, then paying off when the statement comes through. The credit card limit is not that large because of her age and that, but if it helps in the future getting that credit rating up then thats a good thing. I would suggest getting things like mobile phone or something like a contract like that to get a credit rating before jumping into getting a CC off the bat. Also before getting a credit card, check out experian and get a free credit score so you can see where your at. You need to be in the good section at the very least.
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Sgt.Incontro
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If you are certain you can pay your credit card off in full each month, AND plan to use it wisely (i.e. not spend beyond your means), I don't see any harm in getting one. I'd say go for it.

Just make sure you meet the requirements (e.g. salary) before applying, as if you are rejected it could harm your credit score further.
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martin7
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(Original post by Fifi5)
I am currently living with my parents and gonna start uni this september (which has a study abroad year). I am really planning to get my own place in the next 5 years o so and I heard building a good credit score is good for mortgages and loans. I have a part time job at Greggs, but i'll probably reduce my hours when start uni.

Would it be a good idea to get a credit card, possibly a student credit card instead?
If you have employment and an income, then it's worth considering getting a credit card.

That said:

  • Do some research and only apply for a card that you're likely to be approved for
  • Don't fib on your application
  • An application will result in a credit search being done, which will show up for other lenders. So I'd recommend applying for only one card, and if you get turned down, don't apply for another. A history of repeated applications looks like you're desperate to obtain credit, and that will look bad to other lenders
  • Don't spend excessively, and always always pay the balance in full. Never miss a payment. You can usually tell the card company to direct debit your current account for either the minimum payment or the full balance.
  • If you can't pay the full balance in any given month, always pay at least the minimum and as much of the rest as you can.

A key thing to note -- using a credit card properly won't hurt your credit score. But doing things like missing payments and exceeding your credit limit is likely to make things worse than if you'd never had a card in the first place.
Last edited by martin7; 1 month ago
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Kallisto
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(Original post by Fifi5)
I am currently living with my parents and gonna start uni this september (which has a study abroad year). I am really planning to get my own place in the next 5 years o so and I heard building a good credit score is good for mortgages and loans. I have a part time job at Greggs, but i'll probably reduce my hours when start uni.

Would it be a good idea to get a credit card, possibly a student credit card instead?
Sometimes, it is helpful to have a credit card. The hotel business in great cities for instance prefer a payment with a credit card and you can save money, because it is more expensive to pay without.
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IWMTom
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(Original post by HoldThisL)
having bank accounts in good standing, using but not misusing an overdraft, and sometimes having regular payments (like subscription services) can help
Regular payments to subscription services have no bearing on credit worthiness; lenders do not see that data.
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StriderHort
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Personally I prefer having one (or two)

It obv builds your score every month when used responsibly, but it is what it is, an agreement in advance from a lender to lend when needed and that's POWERFUL help in your corner at times. Takes the sting out of many emergencies and surprises.

(When my mum fell ill a few years back i had to drop out uni and lose my loan etc, i needed money for care costs but no bank would then touch me as my income was up in the air, if I didn't have pre existing credit agreements I'd have sank.)

It should go without saying that you need to give the money back, and they expect to make a profit from you one way or another.
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HoldThisL
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(Original post by IWMTom)
Regular payments to subscription services have no bearing on credit worthiness; lenders do not see that data.
on the contrary - https://www.experian.co.uk/consumer/experian-boost.html - CRAs can see it (although I don't know if ones other than Experian use it) and they can adjust your score accordingly, which lenders do see
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IWMTom
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(Original post by HoldThisL)
on the contrary - https://www.experian.co.uk/consumer/experian-boost.html - CRAs can see it (although I don't know if ones other than Experian use it) and they can adjust your score accordingly, which lenders do see
It's complete nonsense. A total marketing gimmick. No credit referencing algorithms I'm aware of take that into account.


Each lender has their own algorithms, they do not just take a "score" from Experian.
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HoldThisL
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(Original post by IWMTom)
It's complete nonsense. A total marketing gimmick. No credit referencing algorithms I'm aware of take that into account.


Each lender has their own algorithms, they do not just take a "score" from Experian.
Experian uses it and may adjust your score, so saying it can sometimes be useful to your creditworthiness is entirely justified, even if a score isn't a very important measure
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lucyyy12
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(Original post by Fifi5)
I am currently living with my parents and gonna start uni this september (which has a study abroad year). I am really planning to get my own place in the next 5 years o so and I heard building a good credit score is good for mortgages and loans. I have a part time job at Greggs, but i'll probably reduce my hours when start uni.

Would it be a good idea to get a credit card, possibly a student credit card instead?
seriously I wouldn't.
you don't have a steady income and you don't want to get into more debt on top of your student loans. This won't look good when applying for mortgages etc in the future.
right now and when at uni you want to save as much money as you possibly can. Money is always tight at uni, and studying abroad is only going to add to that cost.
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StriderHort
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(Original post by lucyyy12)
seriously I wouldn't.
you don't have a steady income and you don't want to get into more debt on top of your student loans. This won't look good when applying for mortgages etc in the future.
right now and when at uni you want to save as much money as you possibly can. Money is always tight at uni, and studying abroad is only going to add to that cost.
If a contract job isn't a steady income I'd like to hear what is?
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lucyyy12
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(Original post by StriderHort)
If a contract job isn't a steady income I'd like to hear what is?
a full time job.
You're only working part time right now and at uni you'll have less time for this.

Seriously you have to be careful with credit cards and spending money you don't actually have.
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StriderHort
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(Original post by lucyyy12)
a full time job.
You're only working part time right now and at uni you'll have less time for this.

Seriously you have to be careful with credit cards and spending money you don't actually have.
That's a matter of intensity, not stability. They are both steady incomes, they pay a set rate and intervals regularity mandated by contract. It is the very definition of a steady income. It's one thing to caution on the dangers of credit and someone's hourly rate and commitment may vary but there's no need to misuse terms.
Last edited by StriderHort; 1 month ago
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StriderHort
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Oh yeah, I forgot buyer protections for credit cards are massively better than debit cards, for many big ticket purchases it can be worth having a credit card JUST to take advantage of these protections (I'd have been taken for near £2k by a dodgy car sale but my credit card saved me, a debit card I'd have been done)
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lucyyy12
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(Original post by StriderHort)
That's a matter of intensity, not stability. They are both steady incomes, they pay a set rate and with set regularity mandated by contract. It is the very definition of a steady income. It's one thing to caution on the dangers of credit and someone's hourly rate and commitment may vary but there's no need to misuse terms.
Sorry I wasn't trying to start an argument. I was just trying to stress how tight money can be if you're at uni. If you don't live at home and have a year abroad you could be leaving with over £50,000 debt as it is.
I grew up in a pretty poor area so everyone where I live avoids credit cards like the plague as they can cause more trouble than their worth. I was always taught if you don't have the money, don't spend it.
You don't need a credit card for a good credit score, there are other ways to do it.
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StriderHort
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(Original post by lucyyy12)
Sorry I wasn't trying to start an argument. I was just trying to stress how tight money can be if you're at uni. If you don't live at home and have a year abroad you could be leaving with over £50,000 debt as it is.
I grew up in a pretty poor area so everyone where I live avoids credit cards like the plague as they can cause more trouble than their worth. I was always taught if you don't have the money, don't spend it.
You don't need a credit card for a good credit score, there are other ways to do it.
As said, stressing the dangers of lending when your income might be low or expected to change is reasonable, but coming from a banking background i'm a stickler for accuracy at times and feel if giving people general advice it has to be bang on. Telling someone with a job that they don't have a steady income isn't going to make them more savvy.

There is a certainly a danger in people seeing is as 'free' money, but that is very much an irresponsible way for them to act, not implicitly the products fault. I also grew up maybe not poor, but not flush either and debt was discouraged, but as i said, there can and likely will be plenty of times in your life where you NEED funding quickly, and 'living within your means' might mean the difference between getting home and being say, stranded abroad, or getting an operation when the NHS waiting list is years...
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