Summary List Placement
Don’t funnel all spending through a single primary cardholder; instead, take a two-player approach.
Build a shared portfolio of cards and rewards that complements (rather than copies) one another.
Decide in advance how you’re going to share the rewards; don’t wait until it’s time to redeem!
Read Insider’s guide to the best rewards credit cards.
When you start sharing finances with someone else, your approach to credit cards may need adjustment. Here are five strategies that can help you and your partner take advantage of more credit card opportunities while avoiding some common mistakes.
Unite, don’t unify
Among the couples I know who have merged their financial lives, most of them put one person in charge of managing money. That person handles everyday pecuniary tasks like budgeting and paying bills, and serves as the primary user for credit card and bank accounts. This may be practical as a division of labor, but funneling your credit cards through just one primary cardholder surrenders all the potential of having a second.
To maximize credit card rewards and benefits, I recommend partners think of themselves as separate financial entities with mutual goals rather than as one. Specifically, let each of you serve as the primary cardholder on some accounts, and add each other as authorized users when it’s beneficial. This approach merges your finances in a way that promotes synergy rather than just efficiency, and it has numerous advantages.
To start with, adding a second player increases the number of cards, benefits, and rewards available to you. Credit card issuers may limit the number of accounts and the total amount of credit they’ll extend to any individual, but two individuals can have more accounts and more total credit than one. Working as a team effectively raises those …read more