“If You Use Your Credit Cards, You Do Not Want to be Rich. – Mark Cuban

“If You Use Your Credit Cards, You Do Not Want to be Rich. – Mark Cuban

“If you use your credit cards, you do not want to be rich,” Mark Cuban said on an episode of The Ramsey Show. “That’s my favorite line; I tell it to people all the time,” he added. Cuban went on to share that people ask him where to invest all the time, and his response is to pay off all credit cards and burn them. “With your credit card, you know what your return is,” he told Ramsey. “If you’re paying 15%, 20% interest, if you pay that down, you just earned 15% or 20%.”

In an interview with Dave Ramsey, billionaire entrepreneur Mark Cuban shared his insights on wealth, business, and personal finance. His provocative statement, “If you use your credit cards, you do not want to be rich,” serves as a wake-up call for many who rely on credit cards without considering the long-term consequences.

Let’s dive into Cuban’s advice and explore how it can help you on your path to financial success.

Mark Cuban’s Stance on Credit Cards and Wealth

Mark Cuban doesn’t mince words when it comes to credit cards. He firmly believes that using credit cards is antithetical to building wealth. The reasoning behind this bold statement lies in the high interest rates associated with credit card debt.

When you carry a balance on your credit card, you’re essentially paying a premium for the privilege of spending money you don’t have. These interest charges can quickly accumulate, creating a significant obstacle to wealth accumulation.

Cuban advises that instead of using credit cards, people should focus on paying off their existing credit card debt. He views this as one of the best investments you can make.

By paying off high-interest credit card balances, you’re guaranteeing yourself a return equivalent to the interest rate you’re being charged – often 15-20% or more. Finding any other investment that can consistently offer such high returns is challenging.

The Power of Paying Off Debt

Cuban’s advice aligns with the perspectives of many wealthy individuals. Dave Ramsey said that when asked about the best way to build wealth, 75% of wealthy people say to get out of debt and stay out of debt.

This isn’t just about avoiding high interest rates; it’s about gaining control over your most powerful wealth-building tool: your income.

When you’re debt-free, every dollar you earn can be directed towards savings, investments, or building your business. You’re no longer servicing debt, giving you more financial freedom and flexibility.

This approach allows you to take advantage of opportunities as they arise rather than being constrained by debt obligations.

Entrepreneurship in Today’s Economy

Despite economic challenges, Cuban believes that now is the best time in history to start a business. Technological advancements and the rise of the shared economy have created unprecedented opportunities for entrepreneurs.

You can start a technology business anywhere with just a laptop and an internet connection. Cuban points to examples like the teenager who made millions by creating apps for Minecraft or the founders of Twitch who built a billion-dollar business by streaming video game content.

These success stories demonstrate that, with creativity and effort, simple ideas can become profitable ventures.

The American Dream Is Alive: Lessons from Shark Tank

As an investor on the TV show Shark Tank, Cuban has seen firsthand that the American Dream is still achievable. He’s witnessed countless entrepreneurs from all walks of life turn their ideas into successful companies.

These individuals, often starting with little more than an idea and determination, prove that entrepreneurial dreams can become reality with courage and perseverance.

Cuban emphasizes that these success stories aren’t just about having a great idea. They’re about having the courage to pursue that idea, even facing challenges and uncertainty. This perspective inspires aspiring entrepreneurs everywhere.

Starting a Business with Limited Resources

One common misconception Cuban addresses is that businesses fail due to lacking capital. He argues that businesses fail due to a lack of brains and effort. Cuban emphasizes the importance of “sweat equity”—the time and effort you put into your business—as the most valuable form of capital.

Many successful businesses start with little to no money. By leveraging your skills, time, and effort, you can bootstrap your way to success.

This might mean living frugally, working long hours, or finding creative ways to stretch resources. The key is to focus on what you can control – your effort and ingenuity – rather than what you lack.

The Importance of Effort and Perseverance

Cuban frequently emphasizes that effort is the one thing in life you can control. He encourages a mindset of “grinding” – putting in consistent, hard work towards your goals. This philosophy applies not just to business but to all aspects of life.

Dealing with challenges and setbacks is part of the journey. Cuban advises embracing these difficulties as opportunities for growth and learning. Maintaining a positive attitude and putting in effort, even when times are tough, increases your chances of eventual success.

Embracing Technology and Innovation

The rapid pace of technological advancement creates constant opportunities for innovation. Cuban’s venture, Cyberdust, is an example of identifying a modern problem (digital privacy) and creating a technological solution. He encourages entrepreneurs to look for pain points in their lives or industries that technology could address.

Protecting Your Digital Footprint

In today’s digital age, managing your online presence is crucial. Cuban emphasizes the importance of controlling your digital footprint, as online information can have real-world consequences for your personal and professional life. Be mindful of what you share online, and consider using privacy-focused tools to protect your information.

Finding Your Passion and Pursuing Excellence

Cuban advises finding something you love and becoming great at it. This alignment of passion and skill can be a powerful driver of success.

Identifying your strengths and interests and dedicating yourself to excellence in each area increases your chances of personal fulfillment and professional success.

Overcoming Challenges: Cuban’s Journey

Cuban’s own story is inspiring. He shares anecdotes from his early days when he lived with multiple roommates and ate simple meals like ketchup and mustard sandwiches. Despite these challenges, he maintained a positive attitude, waking up each day excited about the possibilities.

This mindset—of seeing each day as an opportunity—was crucial to his eventual success. It reminds us that no matter our circumstances, maintaining hope and working toward our goals can lead to extraordinary outcomes.


Mark Cuban’s advice extends far beyond avoiding credit card debt. It’s about taking control of your financial future, embracing entrepreneurship, and persistently working towards your goals.

By avoiding the trap of easy credit, focusing on building a business rather than buying things, and approaching each day as an opportunity, you, too, can work towards building real wealth and achieving your dreams.