How financial associations affect your credit profile

Financial associations affect your credit profile. If you share finances with someone, they may be recorded on your credit report as a ‘financial associate’. This can impact your credit score and ability to get a loan.

How financial associations are created

You can get married, enter a civil partnership or move in with someone. But this won’t always create a financial association. However, if you share gas, electricity, or water bills in joint names, an association can be created. It’s the same if you get a joint loan, credit card or mortgage. Importantly, a joint application can create the association. Consequently, you don’t need to be accepted for a loan for an association to be created.

Financial associations can impact your ability to get a loan

Lenders will consider the household finances. In other words, if a couple share finances, lenders want to know whether both people could afford to pay back a loan. This is the case, even if only one person is actually applying.

An associate’s credit history may be taken into account when deciding your application. Lenders think financial associates affect your ability to pay back debt.

For example, if your partner missed credit payments, a lender might think you’ll help them repay their arrears before you pay your own debts. In another case, if a financial associate has a high credit card balance, a lender might think that the household is overspending. Consequently, they may refuse, for example, an increase in your credit limit.

If you have a low score, it can negatively affect a financial associate’s ability to get credit, even if you’re not making a joint application.

Joint applications may be rejected, even if you have a good credit score, but your partner has a low credit score.

Removing financial associations

Financial associations affect your credit profile. Therefore, it might be time to give your credit file a review if you’ve recently broken a financial tie with someone.

You can get a free ‘statutory’ copy of your credit report from:

If you see financial associations that are no longer valid,  ask a Credit Reference Agency to remove them. You’ll need to prove that the financial connection has ended.

You’ll need to complete a form of ‘financial disassociation’:

About Adrian Davies

With a background in money advice, Adrian's been campaigning for fairer finance for 25 years.

Get the loan you deserve

Get tips on how to boost your credit score, access affordable loans from responsible lenders and improve your financial health.
No spam. Unsubscribe anytime!