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When your SO is scared of credit...

Established Contributor

When your SO is scared of credit...

My ex (no, not Experian...) was terrified of credit cards in general because of what her parents went through with them. (The story as I've heard it revolves around irresponsible use from which they've learned and are now rebuilding.) Yet I've continued to ponder the "what if?" my future spouse has a similar fear. How have you talked about it in a way that isn't condescending or sounding like you're talking to them as you would a child?


TU FICO 8: 743 (10/17) — Ex FICO 8: 732 (11/17)
6 REPLIES
Valued Contributor

Re: When your SO is scared of credit...


GrasshopperStudent wrote:

My ex (no, not Experian...) was terrified of credit cards in general because of what her parents went through with them. (The story as I've heard it revolves around irresponsible use from which they've learned and are now rebuilding.) Yet I've continued to ponder the "what if?" my future spouse has a similar fear. How have you talked about it in a way that isn't condescending or sounding like you're talking to them as you would a child?


Most people would be better off without credit cards.  She has seen first hand what issues it can cause.  I mean what is the big deal if she doesn't want to use credit cards?  I went six years without any credit cards and I was perfectly fine.   Other than a home loan credit isnt' really neccessary. 

BOA Cash Rewards, AMEX BCE, AMEX PRG, AMEX Ameriprise Platinum, AMEX SPG, CITI AADvantage Platinum, Chase Hyatt, Chase Southwest Premier, Chase Southwest Plus, Barclay Arrival +, Barclay AAdvantage Red Aviator, USAA Prefered Cash Rewards , Cap One Quicksilver, Lendup L card, JCrew, Pottery Barn, Express, NFCU Go Rewards.
Frequent Contributor

Re: When your SO is scared of credit...

My husband doesn't use credit cards (because of past problems), but he's okay with me using them. When I decided I wanted to start using them again, we talked about it, and the aggreement was that I would get rid of the cards if either of us felt like it was getting out of hand (because I've also had problems in the past). It's been almost two years and there hasn't been a single problem. We're still debt-free besides our mortgage, and there have been no close-calls. People can change if they want to. Smiley Wink

 

I think what helped is that he understood why I wanted a credit card. It wasn't because I wanted to spend money I didn't have or boost my credit score. I only wanted cash back. He gets bonuses at work. I don't, so it's nice to generate some extra money on my own. Likewise, I understand why he doesn't want a credit card and more importantly, I respect it. It's okay for us to be different. We balance each other out. 

(Queen of Spades)
(Amazon Prime | Chase Freedom | Citi Double Cash | US Bank Cash+)
Established Contributor

Re: When your SO is scared of credit...

While I loosely agree, the statement "most people would be better off without credit cards" is a bit simplistic.  I think its better to say "without using credit cards."

 

There's a very good argument to be made for not using credit cards, but keeping one or two for emergency situtations where a person may not have a large chunk of cash readily available (or at all).   An unexpected home or auto repair, for example.  Or unexpected medical expenses.  Even with insurance, and of those things could suddenly be the source of a several-thousand dollar bill.

 

To be clear, buying a 50" flatscreen because its on sale today only is NOT an emergency.  Smiley Happy

 

My wife gets nervous when she creeps up to 2-3% utilization.   I'm fine with anything under 15% as long as I'm not paying interest.  We are both lucky enough to have the cash reserves to pay all our CC debt off if we needed to, but I see no harm in borrowing their money for 0% interest.

 

Between my regular rewards and bonuses, I generated roughly $1,000 in "extra" cash over the past 12 months.  And I'm not a churner.  It takes dicipline to do this, though, and if one does not have dicipline, one shouldn't play the cashback game, for sure!

My cards:

Amex BCE: $15K | Cap1 Venture: $18K | NFCU CR: $14.3K | Wells Fargo: $11K | Cap1 QS: $8.5K | Barclays Rewards: $7.75K | Discover IT: $6K | Sportsman's Guide: $5.9K | NRA: $5.5K | Legacy Visa: $2.75K | Elan Plat: $2.3K | Cap1 PS: 2K | Cabela's: $1K


Current Scores: EQ: 718 | TU: 742 | EX: 716

Established Member

Re: When your SO is scared of credit...

Same here. He doesn't use credit cards but he's ok with me using them when I need to. I'm also much more careful about using the cards to only get travel rewards or cash back and not to pay for stuff I don't have money for. I did that in the past and it really got me in trouble. He's also pretty understanding about why I'm using them.

Regular Contributor

Re: When your SO is scared of credit...

My wife isn't anti credit card, and she even agrees with me about getting a portfolio of cards that maximize our regular spending habits since we are fortunate to be in a position of not having to carry a balance or pay interest. We're in agreement that it makes sense to treat credit as a safer & dividend earning replacement for cash.

That being said she's clearly a bit freaked out by things like last months app spree ("wait, how many cards did you open??!") and other score gaming tactics that seem counterintuitive to people who don't study credit the way we do. Upon explanation of why / how what I'm doing will actually result in my scores going up & improving my overall profile she's not as worried but it's clear to me that she's still skeptical. I have on occasion showed her some of your guy's signatures & scores to demonstrate that having multiple cards isn't inherently a bad thing if properly managed.
Fico8 (Nov '17) - EQ 692(+18) TU 678 (+34) EX 691 (+24)
Highlighted
Valued Contributor

Re: When your SO is scared of credit...


GrasshopperStudent wrote:

My ex (no, not Experian...) was terrified of credit cards in general because of what her parents went through with them. (The story as I've heard it revolves around irresponsible use from which they've learned and are now rebuilding.) Yet I've continued to ponder the "what if?" my future spouse has a similar fear. How have you talked about it in a way that isn't condescending or sounding like you're talking to them as you would a child?


My spouse is slowly warming up to credit. Before his mortgage, he only ever had AU status on a couple of his parents cards. He got a mortgage in 2011 with no prior credit of his own, thanks to significant inherited investments with Wells Fargo, and a large downpayment. 

 

From that jumping off point, he got a Wells Fargo credit card ($6,000 limit), and a 0% auto loan through Subaru (Chase) financing. I convinced him to open a Blue Cash Everyday card a couple of years ago after he experienced fraud on his WF Visa and had no credit card for almost two weeks. 

 

With a whopping total of four credit accounts ever, my spouse has a credit score 90% of this forum (including me) dreams about. Car loan is paid off. Wells Fargo limit is up to $10,000. Blue Cash Everyday is up to $15,000, and the mortgage is 1/3rd paid down already. I've tried to convince him to get a third card for maximum scoring purposes, but he's not wanting one right now. 



Starting scores: 552 EQ, 570 TU, 558 EX Current scores (9/29/17): 746 EQ 721 TU 719 EX