Applying for a Credit Card With Your Love? Better Think It ThroughMarch 27, 2011 - 8:31 am
If you are in a new relationship that is moving towards a long-term situation, you may be tempted to apply for a credit card together to handle your financial affairs as a couple. However, joining someone on a credit card account before you are legally married requires some serious consideration because the obligations that come along with the joint application are no joke.
There are many things that can go wrong in a relationship and it really takes some thought as to what you are committing to especially when you are intermixing finances. Here are some of the concerns you should have before agreeing to apply for a joint credit card account:
Where Do Finances Rank?
In many cases, people will opt to get a joint credit card account simply because one part of the couple has a credit history that is less than perfect. You both should take the time to review your financial backgrounds and openly discuss why bad credit is part of your record. People who go into such commitments blindly often are the ones to carry the burden of the other person’s debts, which may occur after a breakup or may be the cause of one.
How Will It Be Managed?
Credit cards are a big responsibility and even small missteps can lead to big time charges. In the best interest of both parties, it should be previously discussed how the account will be paid for and managed. Even if you do not interact on other financial matters, you both need to figure out before hand who is paying the bills and how to ensure the credit card will also be kept up to date.
Which Card Is Right?
When you select a credit card on your own, you only have to worry about matching the lifestyle you lead. When you sign up for a joint account, you need to make sure that you are applying for a credit card which makes sense for both parties.
How Will Decisions Be Made?
If you have not been accustomed to handling financial matters together, it is also important to set down some guidelines concerning how the card will be used, what the spending limits will be, and when it is necessary to consult with the other person concerning big-priced purchases. Without ground rules being established, there will be no clear cut expectations on either side which can lead to much discord in the relationship.
Accepting the Reality
If you and your partner have been through the discussion concerning the above-mentioned topics and find there is no grounds for agreement, you both should consider keep finances separate in the short-term until you determine where the relationship is headed. Unfortunately, too many consumers mistakenly rush into applying for a credit account or inter-mixing other financial matters far too soon. When things go downhill in the relationship, one or the other person is left with the full weight and consequences of debt and bad credit marks. Additionally, many who are fresh in love do not take into consideration the reality of the financial difference of opinion and how much it will matter later in the relationship or if they eventually choose to marry. Being blinded by love can lead to bad financial choices on both sides of the relationship so it is important to take some time and make serious considerations before rushing into a tricky situation.