They say that all humans are created equal, unfortunately that’s not true when it comes to your credit score. Is your credit score better than your husband’s? Is his better than yours?
What is a credit score?
A credit score is a numerical value between 300 and 900 that determines our credit worthiness at any given point in time. In a nutshell it’s a representation of how good we are with money, if we make our credit payments on time and if we manage or mismanage our money.
To the single woman out there your credit score can be like a golf game or a yoga class – you always want to make yourself better and since it’s a solo sport all the control is in your hands. However what happens if you’re married?
Your credit score could become a source of competition if you are both trying to improve your financial situation, but what if you have a great credit score and your husband doesn’t? That can be troublesome – but only if you let it.
Here’s how to cope if your credit score is better than your husband:
Remember it’s only temporary
Just remember that a credit score is not forever. You will always have one, but you can improve your credit score by changing your financial habits. If you (as a couple) have financial plans they may need to be set on hold until he works on paying off balances, updating his information with the credit bureaus (Equifax and TransUnion) and closing unused accounts. Be patient because your financial life will get better in six to 12 months with changes in habits.
Help him change his ways
Making changes is not easy, especially if it means changing your lifestyle or is completely out of the normal for your behavior. This may seem harsh, but it has to be done if you want to improve your credit score and in turn your financial life.
Sit down together and make a plan to help him stop using his credit cards and start making payments. That could be budgeting an allowance with no wiggle room, cutting some household expenses so he can spend the money on paying off debt and closing credit cards once they are paid off.
Check his credit score every six months or so and I’m sure you’ll start to see the number go up. That in itself (in addition to making his wife happy) is motivation enough to keep living a responsible financial life.
Overcome the mentality of money
Relationships with credit cards can be like a roller coaster. There are ups when you’re spending and downs when you get your monthly bill and realize you can’t pay it off. So often people need to spend money to make themselves feel better; only when he overcomes this mentality will he truly be able to change his ways.
Help keep his mind off spending money in stores and online. Don’t talk about buying new things, eating out or taking vacations. This can all make him feel bad because not only can’t he afford to do any of those things right now, he’s actually preventing you from doing them too.
My advice is to focus on each other, stay in and enjoy free (or cheap) couple’s activities. LOL! Netflix, I meant watching Netflix.