However, a restrictive interpretation of that rule forced banks to reject applications from stay-at-home spouses with no income of their own. Even though you probably have access to your entire family's funds, you couldn't report that you make enough money to clear a card's balance. If you stated your husband's income as your own, you might have cleared an instant approval credit card application, but your new account could get closed down after a records check.
Fortunately, the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau issued a clarification to the earlier rule that should make it much easier to get a credit card in your own name. Under the CFPB's new guidance, you can report income to which you have "reasonable access." Officials announced the ruling in May 2013, giving banks six months to comply with the change. Therefore, it may be a little while before you see an application form that gives you an appropriate way to explain your family's finances.
Your desire for a credit card in your own name makes sense. If something bad happens to your husband, like a workplace injury or even death, your relative lack of credit in your own name could make it hard to qualify for the best rates on a mortgage or a homeowners' insurance policy. A basic, no-frills account can give you both an emergency safety net and the opportunity to grow your credit history without spending money on fees.
- I'm a 22-year-old female who makes about $1,000 a month. I have a credit union credit card with credit line of $500. I recently applied for a Lowe's credit card and was denied. I'm always on time with my credit card payments. What would be the reason?
- I am an 18-year-old with no credit history. I have read Curtis Arnold's book and am successfully paying my community college tuition on my own. Which card is best suited for me when I only plan on using my future card for gas purchases?
- How long does it take to establish credit when you have no credit?