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College of Human Ecology

Kansas Saves: Tame Credit Card Spending

Tuesday, January 3, 2006

MANHATTAN, Kan. - Shopping with a credit card can speed resolution if a product or service doesn't live up to advertised claims, but using credit successfully typically requires self-discipline, said Carol Young, Kansas State University Research and Extension family financial management specialist.

"If paying with a credit card, shoppers may spend more than if paying with cash or a debit card," said Young, who suggested asking yourself five questions before using your credit card:

  1. Will this purchase help me meet one of my goals?
  2. What do I have to give up to get it?
  3. Would I buy this if I had to pay cash?
  4. Would I come back tomorrow to buy this?
  5. If I charge this, can I pay off this month's bill?

To make asking such questions a habit, local and district K-State Research and Extension offices are offering credit card covers imprinted with these spending questions. The covers are part of Kansas Saves, a campaign to encourage saving and successful money management. The financial management campaign is part of a larger national effort called America Saves and sponsored by the Consumer Federation of America.

For more information, check with local or district K-State Research and Extension offices or visit Extension's Web site: www.oznet.ksu.edu/financialmanagement/ and click on Kansas Saves.

This article was posted on Tuesday, January 3, 2006, and is filed under College News, Family Studies & Human Services.