The Hidden Reasons behind Aversion to Credit Cards


Discover the hidden reasons behind millennials’ aversion to credit cards in this eye-opening article. Delve into the surprising trend revealed by recent Money Pulse survey that uncovers why this generation, known for its prudence in avoiding debt, is the least inclined to possess a credit card. Uncover the underlying factors that contribute to this distinct financial behavior among young adults.

Delve into the eye-opening revelations of recent Money Pulse survey that shed light on a surprising trend among millennials. Discover why this generation, known for its prudence in avoiding debt, seems to be the least inclined to possess a credit card. Uncover the underlying factors that contribute to this distinct financial behavior among young adults.

Editors note: Some of the offers on this page may be expired. Check out our Best Credit Cards page for the most up-to-date offers for our favorite credit cards.

Seven years after the end of the Great Recession, many young adults remain wary about using credit, a new survey found.

While a majority of older Americans own a credit card, just 33% of adults between the ages of 18 and 29 say they have one, according to our Money Pulse survey.

Even as the economy and job prospects have improved, this generation hasnt warmed to the idea of using credit as a financial tool. Two years ago, when commissioned a similar survey, nearly two-thirds of young adults said they had no major credit cards, defined as cards issued by either American Express, Visa, MasterCard or Discover.

The survey was conducted May 19-22, 2016, by Princeton Survey Research Associates International and included responses from 1,002 adults living in the continental United States. The margin of error is plus or minus 3.7 percentage points.

Ive never owned nor have ever wanted to own a credit card, says Kristian Rivera, 25, a digital marketing specialist in New York City. It wasnt really a decision that I made, but growing up I was warned of the risks of having a credit card and advised to put off getting one as long as possible.

CARD OFFERS: Need a new credit card? Let credit cards help you find the right card today.

Learning from the past

I spoke with a number of young adults who dont own a credit card. They said they either shunned credit because of previous financial problems they encountered, or because they saw how debt affected their loved ones during the recession.

Revolving debt, which is made up mostly of credit cards, spiked to its highest level ever — $1.02 trillion — in July 2008 in the middle of the recession. It slowly fell over the next few years as cardholders either paid down their cards or issuers wrote off bad debts.


We dont want to make the same mistakes our parents made in the past, Rivera says. We want to do things smarter and safer.

Darnell Billups, 29, a U.S. Marine Corps captain stationed in Twentynine Palms, California, says when he and his wife, Natasha, married in 2011, they had a combined $40,000 in debt, including credit cards and student loans. They paid off their debts in 2013, just 2 weeks before Billups was deployed to Afghanistan for the second time.

Our thing is, we will never have a credit card ever again, Billups says.

More than just credit cards, the couple wants to steer clear of all debt. They recently opened a photography business, Emmanuel Photography & Designs, without taking on any debt, and they plan to eventually buy a house using only cash.

Its been just wonderful because we dont have to pay anyone back, he says.

Who is using credit?

Young adults arent the only demographic group shying away from credit card use. Our survey found that you are unlikely to own a credit card if you:

  • Have an annual income of less than $30,000.
  • Havent attended college.
  • Are black or Hispanic.

Credit card ownership is most prevalent among:

  • Baby boomers.
  • College graduates.
  • Adults with an annual income of more than $75,000.
  • Those who identify themselves as Republicans.

Why establishing credit matters

For young adults, one of the quickest ways to build credit is to get a credit card and use it responsibly.

FREE TOOL: Check your credit score for free today .

Without a strong credit history, millennials may find it more difficult to get an auto loan or a mortgage when theyre ready for those financial commitments, says Kent Thune, president and owner of Atlantic Capital Investments in Hilton Head Island, South Carolina.

Credit is a financial tool; debt is a financial problem.

Marc Aschoff learned this lesson when he and a group of friends tried to buy a rental property shortly after college. But since Aschoff had never had a credit card, he hadnt developed a solid credit history and none of the mortgage brokers he spoke with would qualify him for a mortgage.

Needless to say, this isnt something I considered, says Aschoff, 25, of Hoboken, New Jersey.

Aschoff and one of his business partners, Chris Sorrentino, also 25, say they now own credit cards only to help with their credit scores. And building up their credit helped them qualify for a mortgage.

They now own 3 rental properties near Lehigh University in Bethlehem, Pennsylvania. In January, Aschoff, Sorrentino and 2 other partners in their real estate firm — Acrez LLC — purchased a house in Springfield, New Jersey, with cash. They are now renovating and hope to resell.

The only debt we really take on is mortgage debt, Aschoff says. Other than that, debt is not our friend.

Other ways good credit helps

Your credit needs extend beyond a car or a house. Without a credit card, you may have a hard time getting a cellphone contract or renting a car, says Rod Griffin, director of public education for the credit bureau Experian. Your credit score determines whether you qualify for certain insurance policies.

As they go through life, they will need access to credit in order to do the things we want as adults, Griffin says.

Difference between credit and debt

Many of the young adults told me they dont have a problem with credit; its debt they worry about. Without a credit card, though, its harder to get into debt.

Aversion to debt is generally a healthy outlook, Griffin says, noting, Credit is a financial tool; debt is a financial problem.

Theres a fear of debt, he says. I think you have to have a healthy fear of debt, just not sheer terror.

Your credit card doesnt impress

While the majority of American adults own a credit card, that piece of plastic isnt something that can impress most people.

The survey found more than 8 out of 10 adults say if they were eating dinner at a restaurant with another person and that person paid with a premium rewards credit card — like a platinum or black card — it would leave no impression.

Indeed, the days when credit cards were seen as status symbols are probably numbered.

You dont see commercials and such on television and theres a guy that pulls out his gold card and people are looking at him admiringly, Thune says.

CARD SEARCH: Find the best reward credit card offers on today.

Allen Walton, 28, owner of the online retailer in Richardson, Texas, says he thinks if people actually saw someone pay with a high-end card, their responses might be different.

People that say they arent impressed, thats not necessarily true, Walton says.

But I guarantee if someone pulled that (premium card) out to pay for an $80 steak one night, anyone that saw would make a mental note of it because they themselves dont have it and know theyre probably not ever going to be given the opportunity.


Thanks to Source:





credit cards

credit cards

credit cards