Not long ago we discussed the possible ways a divorce can affect your credit reports. Fortunately, not all marriages end with a divorce, hence we feel obligated to explore the topic a little bit more. The time has come to analyze some of the most important facts regarding marriage and credit score. Is combining finances with your spouse a good or a bad thing?
How Can Marriage Affect Your Credit Score?
Firstly, let us get this out of the way: credit reports do not include your marital status, not your spouse’s identity, or their account history. However, things can get a bit more complicated once you decide to open a joint account or credit card.
What happens then is the information is included and maintained on your credit reports coming from the three largest agencies, i.e. Experian, TransUnion, and Equifax. In other words, all information regarding your joint finances becomes part of both your credit reports. Therefore, when it comes to marriage and credit score, these concepts might come hand in hand.
Responsibly managing your accounts translates to the improvement of both your credit scores. On the other hand, having difficulties in the repayment of loans means your creditworthiness could suffer.
Article that may interest you: Rebuild Credit After Divorce – a Complete Guide
Marriage and Credit Score: What About a Name Change?
There is a common misconception among many people in terms of marriage and credit score. The myth is that a name change will erase your previous credit history to let you start with a clean slate. Time to debunk that myth as no such thing is possible.
All you need to know is that after your name changes, you ought to report it to your credit card issuer. After that, your new name becomes a name variation, which is visible on your credit report.
Can One Ruin Their Spouse’s Credit?
So, you are just happily married and from now on decide to manage your finances together. Your spouse, however, has a poor credit score, and you might wonder if it will negatively affect your report. Luckily, such terms are not fixed.
Even if your spouse does not have high numbers on their report, there are ways to fix the credit. It is highly recommendable to consult a professional credit fix company. In the meantime, you can also review the following tips on managing your credit as a couple:
- Avoid late payments. Take care of all your due dates and repay all your financial commitments in time. Late payments may remain on your report for up to seven years, yet timely payments can work magic.
- Reduce credit card debts. Concentrate on repaying your credit cards and also examine your spouse’s obligations and limits. If the amounts exceed 30% of the credit limit, the higher credit use might begin to harm credit ratings.
- Manage old accounts. Consider if you and your spouse need all the accounts you have opened. Closing or maintaining some of them can effectively influence your score and utilization.
- Open new accounts. When it comes to marriage and credit score, joint accounts are a powerful tool. However, too many hard inquiries on your report may lower the score. Hence, handle them with care.
- Keep track of your credit report. Checking your credit regularly will help you point out any issues and take care of them. Such monitoring lets you control your score a lot better.
Marriage and Credit Score: A Conclusion
Understanding the ways, a marriage and credit score work is helpful to both spouses. Use your liberty to monitor and improve your reports along the way. Moreover, consider hiring a credit expert if you feel like there are things in need of fixing. Good luck with your marriage and joint finances!