Joint credit cards and my credit score
February 10, 2013 12:49 PM Subscribe
Credit experts: When I enrolled in college, my father added me onto a new credit card to have at my disposal. Now it's becoming an albatross.
posted by drpynchon to Work & Money (11 answers total) 2 users marked this as a favorite
I am now many years out from that, and trying to optimize my credit. Unfortunately the card is still on my credit report (presumably my name is on the account), even though I haven't touched it personally in over a 15 years and don't even have the card, and my father has been the only user. Up until recently, the card was in excellent standing, and with a revolving balance and utilization ratio in the neighborhood of 15%. I let that go based on the notion that any negative impact on my overall credit might be marginal at those levels, and having an aging, regularly used account in good standing may even help. My other cards have limited utilization ratios. For reasons I'm not privy to, my father has decided to escalate the revolving balance on the card to closer to 60% (with a credit limit of about $20k). This is considerably increasing what creditors will see as my overall net utilization ratio. I'm uncomfortable prying into why he's carrying a month-to-month balance on a card like that in the first place, or how much the interest he's paying even is. My question is: at this point, if I can't convince dad to reduce utilization on this card to "optimal" levels, should we apply to take my name off the card (he would be fine with that and suggested it), or would that lead to potentially some other hit on my credit in the vein of a credit inquiry and the alleged harm done by closing accounts. I'm not so concerned about having this account fall off my report in 10 years if it's closed for what it's worth.