Many trying to get and keep good credit are scared of marrying someone with credit that’s less than pristine. Well, fortunately, you can breathe a sigh of relief—marrying someone with bad credit won’t automatically tarnish yours. However, there are other ways that your spouse’s credit may impact you.
Many trying to get and keep good credit are scared of marrying someone with credit that’s less than pristine.
- You may be responsible for debt incurred after marriage. Depending on your state, you may become responsible for any debts that your spouse creates after you marry them. This is especially important to understand if you’re marrying someone who lacks financial savvy or discipline.
- It may be difficult to get a home loan. If you want to purchase a home, the lender will look at the credit of both you and your spouse. Unless you’re a high income earner and can afford the home loan on your own, it may be difficult to get approved for a mortgage if your spouse has bad credit.
- Your spouse may run up debts in your name. If you have your spouse on your credit card accounts as a co-applicant or authorized user, they have the power to run up debts that you may be unable to pay. If you allow your spouse to use your credit, set clear limits so that you can limit your exposure to risk.
- You may need to take on more credit risk. If your spouse is unable to qualify for credit because of their bad credit history, you may be forced to take on more debt to pay for your kid’s school tuition, afford a mortgage, or buy a car. This can negatively impact your credit by increasing your debt-to-income ratio.
If you’re marrying someone with bad credit, communicate openly about how they can fix their credit and reestablish financial health.