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Paycheck Chronicles

Keep It Simple (Stupid)

So, today I had yet another incident where I felt like our finances were too complicated.  I have one department store credit card and I rarely use it.  However, I bought some Christmas presents with it because it was simple.  Last week, I logged onto the account to pay the bill and there was some problem with the website.  I forgot until today, and it was due on Monday!   Aauuugghh!  I'm not sure if I am frustrated because I forgot, or mad that the system was down when I tried to pay the first time, or just irritated that I keep occasionally using this card that gives me trouble.

All in all, I think we've got relatively simple finances.  We use Navy Federal as our primary bank, with all our deposits going there, and we pay our bills out of that account.  We each have a Navy Federal Credit Visa.  I have a checking and savings account with USAA, plus a MasterCard (allotment goes to savings, I use the credit card for Christmas shopping, and then pay the credit card with the money in my savings account.)  My husband has a USAA Amex and his stinky Government Card.  We have a small account with Pentagon Federal to pay our PenFed Gas Rewards credit card.  We only use it for gas, and we aren't using it at all while we are overseas.  So, three banks, six national credit cards (one the stinky Government Card) and one store card.  We could simplify more but it seems a reasonable amount for us.  So why is this so hard?

I am in awe of those of you who are successfully juggling payments on a wallet full of credit cards.  I would be missing due dates left and right.  Even if you are keeping your payments up, you might find it easier to cut down to just a few cards.  Less than six, based on my experience.

I'm curious...how many cards and bank accounts do you have?  Is it manageable for you, or is it too much?  What would be your magic number?

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