Credit Cards

Adding Girlfriend (who has terrible credit) to my Credit Card... Need Advice

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  • Feb 10th, 2019 10:40 pm
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[OP]
Newbie
Jan 29, 2019
1 posts
2 upvotes

Adding Girlfriend (who has terrible credit) to my Credit Card... Need Advice

Hello all! Creating a burner account for this. The short version of this is I want to help my long term girlfriend build and repair her credit. Her ex husband totally ruined her credit (complete deadbeat) and left her with 2 kids completely high and dry. She is awesome and I love her and I want to try and help her. My credit is between 740-760 depending on TransUnion or Eqifax, so its not bad.. I've been separated myself and have slowly over time built it back up from the 600s. We are starting a new life together and blending families, she wants to completely cut ties with her ex and finances and start over (which is mostly done now). I've been doing some "googling" and it seems like if I add her to one of my credit cards as an authorized user, that can quickly bring her rating up... true? Or would we have to apply for a credit card together?

It doesn't seem like either of these options will hurt my credit....unless things aren't paid off etc. What I have been doing this last year is using my credit card for 99% of payments and at the end of the month, paying it off in full.

Does anyone have any thoughts of the best and safest way for me to help her and bring her credit up by using my credit to assist?
59 replies
Deal Addict
Dec 12, 2009
4773 posts
2359 upvotes
Toronto
TomJ29295 wrote: Does anyone have any thoughts of the best and safest way for me to help her and bring her credit up by using my credit to assist?
If you don't have the cash to front the security for a secured credit card in her name, then do a cash advance on one of yours.
The card will be in her name and on her credit report.
Only risk to you is the amount you front for the security deposit.
Member
Jan 8, 2009
292 posts
74 upvotes
If she is not responsible for payment on the card it wouldn’t help her in any way to add her to your card.

I could be wrong but I just checked and my credit card does not show up in my wife’s credit report. She has her own card with her name in it, but I’m responsible for the account.

There is no shortcut to fixing credit. Wait for the bad debt to clear off the credit report in 6 years (assuming those accounts aren’t active, as they will never leave if kept active). Help offset the bad rating with a $500 secured card if she can’t get a regular card.

Joint loans of some sort could also help but as long as she has collections, bankruptcy, or other 90+ days late, the credit score will be stubbornly low until those drop off.
Deal Fanatic
Nov 22, 2015
5789 posts
5299 upvotes
TomJ29295 wrote: Hello all! Creating a burner account for this. The short version of this is I want to help my long term girlfriend build and repair her credit. Her ex husband totally ruined her credit (complete deadbeat) and left her with 2 kids completely high and dry. She is awesome and I love her and I want to try and help her. My credit is between 740-760 depending on TransUnion or Eqifax, so its not bad.. I've been separated myself and have slowly over time built it back up from the 600s. We are starting a new life together and blending families, she wants to completely cut ties with her ex and finances and start over (which is mostly done now). I've been doing some "googling" and it seems like if I add her to one of my credit cards as an authorized user, that can quickly bring her rating up... true? Or would we have to apply for a credit card together?

It doesn't seem like either of these options will hurt my credit....unless things aren't paid off etc. What I have been doing this last year is using my credit card for 99% of payments and at the end of the month, paying it off in full.

Does anyone have any thoughts of the best and safest way for me to help her and bring her credit up by using my credit to assist?
False. You'd have to apply for a joint credit card - not all FIs offer this.
Deal Addict
Dec 16, 2017
2541 posts
1037 upvotes
CND Brain & Hear…
@TomJ29295 in Canada, auth user (supp card) won't get any credit rebuilding.

Most of your info came from the US market where it was indeed the case
Give me a J. I'm a maniac and an African expert.
Deal Addict
Nov 13, 2013
2763 posts
1463 upvotes
Ottawa
No adding her to your card will not help her credit. A supplementary card lets her make purchases on here account but otherwise you remain solely responsible. If you trust her than this can be a good way to give her access to a credit. There are expensive cards that will allow her to rebuild her credit slowly (as in the Capitalone link). I would ask for what purpose are you trying to improve her credit? Do you want to buy a house together? Your income and credit might be enough and frankly you probably shouldn't buy something that you can't afford on your own anyway. Same story for a car etc.

And yeah good luck.
Deal Addict
Jan 15, 2017
4114 posts
3619 upvotes
I echo the same advice - adding her name to your credit card will not help her credit rating at all as it will not report to her report.

The best way for her to improve her credit rating is to apply for a credit card, use it wisely, and then wait. If she cannot receive an unsecured credit card, then apply for a secured credit card. There is no magic to increasing credit ratings - it takes time.

Just understand that as you are planning on blending families with her, her credit rating will impact your family life and the options that you have as a family.
Deal Fanatic
Apr 16, 2007
8032 posts
3330 upvotes
Financial District B…
TomJ29295 wrote: Hello all! Creating a burner account for this.
So you have another RFD account, hmm.

TomJ29295 wrote: I've been doing some "googling" and it seems like if I add her to one of my credit cards as an authorized user, that can quickly bring her rating up... true? Or would we have to apply for a credit card together?
Only true if both of your move to the USA.
Even down there a lot of the main revolving card issuers are now disallowing this practice as piggybacking off good card payers should be totally abolished.


She needs to apply and qualify for her own credit
----------------------------Licensed Credit Bureau member, S1, FI Automotive, CCP forums most banned = x 13 and counting, guess who that is?... stomped to the curb once again
Deal Guru
User avatar
Mar 23, 2008
12336 posts
8757 upvotes
Edmonton
As others have said... Help her by getting her a secured card, and let things recover. No quick fixes. She can get started with as little as $75, and she would have access to that as credit right away. So it doesn't even really cost her anything.

And duplicate accounts are against forum rules, which can result in both accounts being banned, I believe.

C
Newbie
Oct 22, 2012
21 posts
19 upvotes
Toronto
1. Pay off debt or start paying interest on time
2. Get a secure credit card if she doesn't even have one
3. Ask her to not use her credit card too much, especially not above the credit limit.
4. Pay the amount in full on time.
These steps will heal the credit score over time

Additional step to heal your reputation in your bank:
1. Start scheduling savings. Schedule that $10 per pay check goes to Saving account.
2. In TD, you can set up for every debit transaction in your chequing , you transfer 50 cents to all kinds of Saving Accounts
3. Don't wipe your saving account unless absolutely necessary

After 1 -2 years , you will be offered a better card , take it and keep using it .
You will be fine after about 3 years since you are not in the worst place.
Deal Fanatic
User avatar
Feb 19, 2010
6237 posts
2971 upvotes
I find it at least a little naive to suggest that her poor credit is solely the fault of her ex-husband. Was she bound and gagged or otherwise completely incapacitated during the marriage such that she had no input into her own financial life?

IOW, adding her to your account, which will not achieve what you're looking for anyway, is a huge risk for YOU. As others have already suggested, she needs to get an account in her own name and sink or swim on her own. Perhaps this is where you can assist her in managing her credit but it might be enlightening for you to see how she does now that she's escaped that nasty ex.
Last edited by Conquistador on Jan 31st, 2019 4:07 pm, edited 1 time in total.
Deal Fanatic
Dec 16, 2005
5690 posts
3763 upvotes
CNeufeld wrote: And duplicate accounts are against forum rules, which can result in both accounts being banned, I believe.
Give OP a break. He's about to destroy his credit... LOL
Last edited by mech9t5 on Jan 31st, 2019 3:30 pm, edited 1 time in total.
Deal Expert
User avatar
Apr 21, 2004
54665 posts
19455 upvotes
TomJ29295 wrote: Hello all! Creating a burner account for this. The short version of this is I want to help my long term girlfriend build and repair her credit. Her ex husband totally ruined her credit (complete deadbeat) and left her with 2 kids completely high and dry. She is awesome and I love her and I want to try and help her. My credit is between 740-760 depending on TransUnion or Eqifax, so its not bad.. I've been separated myself and have slowly over time built it back up from the 600s. We are starting a new life together and blending families, she wants to completely cut ties with her ex and finances and start over (which is mostly done now). I've been doing some "googling" and it seems like if I add her to one of my credit cards as an authorized user, that can quickly bring her rating up... true? Or would we have to apply for a credit card together?

It doesn't seem like either of these options will hurt my credit....unless things aren't paid off etc. What I have been doing this last year is using my credit card for 99% of payments and at the end of the month, paying it off in full.

Does anyone have any thoughts of the best and safest way for me to help her and bring her credit up by using my credit to assist?
Get her a secure card to rebuild her credit. But look into her credit file for telltale/derogatory signs (collection agency notes, etc.)

Why long term and not lifetime?

High /= addiction
Dry /= to performance correct?
Deal Addict
User avatar
Mar 3, 2005
1033 posts
741 upvotes
Mississauga
Authorizer user cards don't help because they don't report against the authorized user's credit bureau in Canada. (Different in US where they do!)

You could apply jointly for a card or loan with her (both are responsible/both are the borrower) this reports against both credit profiles.
[The ever present downside is that if one party defaults, the other is liable for the full amount.]

As someone mentioned above - the best [i.e. lowest risk for you] option is to help her obtain a secured card (from, for instance Capital One or HomeTrust). You can help her raise the deposit.

PHT
Temp. Banned
Apr 20, 2018
151 posts
72 upvotes
Under NO CIRCUMSTANCE should she EVER get to fiddle with YOUR CREDIT!

EVER.

Have her apply for a secured credit card. END OF STORY!
Temp. Banned
Apr 20, 2018
151 posts
72 upvotes
Or, get a new girlfriend who's RESPONSIBLE.

Serious.

Why do dudes fall into this sh?t?
Deal Addict
Aug 15, 2009
1524 posts
1194 upvotes
Montreal
I wouldn't touch her credit issues with a 10ft pole !

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