Thursday, March 27, 2008

Store Credit Cards - Yea or Nay?

I guess as a follow-up to "my secret shame" is the question "are store credit cards - yea or nay?" I've got 4 and I am not sure I should cancel them or not. I don't use any but I do get some nice coupons from them.

I know exactly why we got two of the cards, we had just bought our first condo and needed to buy a washer/dryer/fridge and paint supplies. So we got a 10% discount on both purchases from Best Buy and Home Depot respectively. We saved $100 on the washer/dryer/fridge and had 18 months 0% interest. We paid it off on schedule. For our home repairs we saved $75 and had 1 year of 0% interest. This was back in 2002. I think we didn't cancel the cards after we paid them off because they kept sending us coupons. We still do get coupons like $10/50 at home depot, or $5/15 at Best Buy. So though nothings been charged in many years on the cards, we still have them.

The Gapcard I have no excuse. I think I got it back in 1998 and haven't used it since. But again they have lovely coupons. Though I'm less likely to use the coupon than either BB or Home Depot.

Finally we just got a furniture card this summer with our new couch. We had $100 coupon savings on the couch and 0% interest. It's paid off but they wouldn't take the coupon without using a credit card and no I asked they wouldn't give discount for paying cash. I either live where people don't give cash discounts or they don't give discounts either way. Anyway this card is still open because it too gives nice coupons. I have coupons for $100 furniture, and for cheaper IMAX movie tickets and food. Nothing I want to see, but I'm hoping to get more movie tickets for Batman this summer.

But are these the reasons people like store cards? Are they not using them but hooked on getting the coupons? Or do they actually shop there? I have to say we actually shop a lot at home depot. The other stores not so much, although everytime a $5/15 comes our way I buy DH a itunes gift card at Best Buy.

So I'm undecided whether store CC are yea or nay. What do you think?


Mom @ Wide Open Wallet said...

hmmm.. I would be interested in getting the home depot card just for those coupons. I've never had a store card.

Fabulously Broke said...

If you're saying "Store" cards as in grocery stores and pharmaceuticals, then YAY

The points I get from using just those two cards consolidating/building from all my purchases is amazing.. it's like free money.. which it kind of is.

but department stores, or places like home depot that I rarely shop at.. then nay...

Fabulously Broke said...

oh but only if I pay the cards off in full every month

otherwise, it would be "free money"

minimum wage said...

Store credit cards?

Put credit card in bowl, add water, store bowl in freezer.

Jim said...

Personally I like how they knock down the price if you use their card and financing program. I have bought plenty of appliances using a store card, 0% interest and no payments. Pay the balance before the period is up, owe nothing beyond the original purchase price. Our washer and dryer will be paid off this month. Right now I'm shopping for a LCD TV and seeing where the best price and possibly finance program is at. If I can get a deal to bring down the price or not cost me any additional amount, which works for me.

Instead of just throwing it on a credit card and paying interest on the purchase while trying to pay it off, it's better to think about what I'm doing first. I may want to buy things but I also want to realistically think about whether or not I can afford them. These cards I would never carry around for everyday purchases though, for any reason, ever.