Adding new spouse as authorized user can help build credit history

Dear Experian,

My wife had no credit history before we were married. I set her up as authorized user for a couple of my frequently used credit cards. Does this help her build up her credit history?



Dear HNA,

Including your wife as an authorized user will help her establish a credit history.

Authorized user accounts are included in a credit report and can be considered when making lending decisions. However, an authorized user has no responsibility for repayment of the debt. For that reason, they often have less bearing on a lender’s decision, and may not be included in some credit score calculations.

Although authorized user accounts are not always included in credit scores, they will result in a credit history being established and eventually can help your wife qualify independently for her own accounts.

Adding your wife as a joint account holder may be more beneficial if you are trying to establish a credit history that will enable her to qualify for credit on her own more quickly.

As a joint account holder she will share full responsibility for the debt. Joint accounts will appear on both your report and hers, and will be included in credit score calculations, which is essential to qualifying for credit independently.

Thanks for asking.

- The “Ask Experian” team

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