What happens if I have bad credit and I get married?

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I have very bad credit due to some decisions I made in college without really knowing what I was doing (dumb). I’m working very hard on monitoring and repairing it, but I understand that these things take time and the best way to go about it is to stay on top of your bills and debt and pay things on time (which i have been).

I’ve been living with my boyfriend for over a year and a half now and we’ve talked about marriage but he wants to wait because of my bad credit. What exactly would my credit score mean as a married person? I guess I am not completely sure what I would impact. Any help or advice would be appreciated.

  1. Reply
    Walter J
    June 26, 2011 at 2:08 pm

    Amanda, the main affect of your bad credit on your marriage would be to make it difficult for you to get joint credit, such as a car or home loan, or a joint credit card. On the other hand, if your husband can help pay off some of your old bills, eventually your score should improve. But your own credit rating would still only apply to you.

  2. Reply
    billy bad ass
    June 26, 2011 at 2:38 pm

    I had bad credit when I got married, and my wife has decent credit. We don’t have any joint accounts, which is why her credit remained fine. If you were to apply for new credit together, then they would potentially merge your accounts. Also, if you have collectors that are targetting you currently, it probably isnt a good time, but on the other-hand if they are old charged off accounts, you two should’nt notice any changes for the worse. Also, if you want to get rid of debt fast, and you credit is already not-so-great, I would recommend seeking a debt settlement company make sure they are certified u.s.o.b.a. and i.a.p.d.a. They have programs as quick as 6months to 1 yr. and dont have long term affects compared to other programs. I recommend the source listed below.

  3. Reply
    June 26, 2011 at 2:51 pm

    It means you would both be impacted by your bad credit. Companies would see you as a joint unit, and they would see that part of the unit has very bad credit, and they wouldn’t be likely to give you better terms than you would alone. By marrying you, he takes on your bad credit, and it’s not in either person’s interest for that to happen.

    Focus on eliminating your debt and repairing your credit. Consider it a future wedding gift for your husband-to-be.

  4. Reply
    June 26, 2011 at 3:32 pm

    The other answer explained, your spouse’s credit only applies on joint credit events such as buying a house ( mortgage -the big one) and any joint cards.

    You can agree after you are married you WILL NOT put his name on your credit cards. Thus your credit will not impact him, as much.

    If you have no joint events, he will not be impacted.

    Your credit could make it difficult for you to get a decent car loan.

    If you want to buy a house and your income is needed to qualify ..then by applying jointly that is a problem.

    Far as the day to day living expenses, I would highly suggest you keep totally separate finances and agree on which bills you will be responsible for. My spouse and I both have excellent credit. We do this so we can live together well without arguing over money.

    If you save before you see the money (like 401K, etc) you will never miss it.

    I would recommend one of those non profit credit counselors.
    Why not see a credit counselor now, an expert…to get your credit where it needs to be. You will both feel better.

    I guess there are counselors and those that “settle debt”.

    “Any debt settlement program will have a short-term, adverse effect on your credit during the program. This may affect your ability to apply for new credit while your accounts are being settled. Once the debt has been paid off through a settlement program, a client is then free to rebuild a solid credit profile without holding the burden of any outstanding debt.”

    Good luck.

    I guess I would aggressively figure out how I could get completely debt free…and start saving. This will prove a lot.

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