My credit used to be really, really bad. I wasn’t responsible with credit cards & loans and didn’t really care about the impact anything would have on my credit score. I went bankrupt and still continued to incur more debt. I’ve become debt free multiple times, but I’ve finally learned my lesson. The last few years, I’ve been working hard to reduce debt and improve our finances.
My husband (otherwise known as Honey) was in the same crappy credit boat as me, except he never went bankrupt.
Now that I’m officially a real-life grown-up, I can see why it’s important to have good credit and have finally achieved it with hard work and determination. It is entirely possible to go from a credit score in the 500’s to the 700’s, if you put in the work.
Alternatively, you can also receive the same results another way. Since I’ve always been in charge of our finances, everything has been in my name (bills, credit cards, loans etc.). So my husband’s credit score was stagnant and his credit report was pretty much empty, even after mine began to flourish. So I did the easiest thing I could think of to improve his credit.
I added him onto one of my credit cards with the longest history and BAM! It worked like a charm, all of the sudden…he had credit history with no flaws. Now this can go both ways, if my credit was horrible and I added him on my credit card, it would damage his credit. This should only be done when you’re attempting to share good credit history, otherwise it’s just mean.
Why I Chose to Add Him to That Particular Card:
- The account was the oldest one I had
- In the last 3 years, there haven’t been any late payments at all
- In the last 3 years, I have never gone over my credit limit or faced any penalties
If you are planning to do something similar, make sure to check your credit report first. That way, you’ll know exactly where that particular account stands. Also, don’t forget that payment history is one of the biggest factors used in determining credit scores. So it might be more beneficial to choose a card or account with 100% on-time payments even if it’s not the oldest account your have on record.
One of my goals for 2012 was to add my husband onto my accounts so that I could improve his credit. Thankfully, just adding Honey onto one of them managed to achieve that goal; so I’ll just stop there and enjoy checking it off.
With my luck, I’d add him on to a couple other accounts and his credit score would plummet. Better safe than sorry; my goal was accomplished, so for now the one account is perfectly fine. In case you’re curious, his credit score was in the low 600’s and when he checked it the other day at Credit Sesame and it was 762. Pretty awesome.
What have you done to improve your credit score?