Before you decide to open a joint credit card account there are a few things you should probably know. The most important detail out of all of the little facts involved with getting a joint credit card is who you are getting the account with. Most of the time whether or not it is a good idea hinges primarily on the person.
Many relationships may spur you into making quick, rash decisions, but this is never the wisest way to take the action of a joint credit card account. Make sure you’ve known the person long enough to trust in their reliability, because if they aren’t reliable you will likely end up suffering the consequences of someone else’s bad habits or recklessness.
Involving finances with relationships is also a common reason for people being torn apart. Consider every aspect of the situation over well before you make this decision.
Sharing a Credit Card Account Information
There are different types of joint accounts you can get. It is fairly evident that in a joint account you and another person have combined rights and responsibilities to a credit card account. Authorized user accounts and co-signer accounts might also apply to the same category as a joint account as they involve more than one person and one individual account.
These are all different types of shared credit. If you are an authorized user you are essentially using someone else’s credit. In this case they are the ones, not you, who will get billed for the expenses. When you are a co-signer things work in a reverse fashion. In this case you will be the one responsible for the bill but you won’t be able to use the account as it will be in someone else’s name. In a true joint account both you and the other individual will be full partners on the account.
This means you both have complete, equal access to account funds and you are both fully, equally liable. This does not mean that you can use half of he money in the account and share half the debt—you are %100 responsible for both.
Facts About Joint Credit Card Accounts
The person may not have credit that is as good as yours, in which case there is a better chance that they will drag your good credit downward. If they have bad spending habits then it will reflect in their credit score, and there is a good chance that, if you have a joint account, these habits will come to afflict your own score.
Having an equal score is much more safe, but even then you have to think about your relationship aside from finances and if it is stable enough for such a crucial decision. The best thing to do is ultimately open a joint account with someone who has better credit than you. Even then there can be interpersonal things which can go wrong, but your credit is a lot more likely to be safe and even improve.