The Marriage Multiplier

For just about anything you want to get off your chest about credit cards.
4 posts
Sevenfeet
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Joined: Thu Jan 17, 2013 7:20 pm
Location: United States

The Marriage Multiplier

Postby Sevenfeet » Sun Feb 03, 2013 6:17 pm

I've been hanging out here for nearly two months now and the information here is allowing myself to formulate a credit card plan that will work with me, not against me. One thing that seems to be the normal around here is that people get cards often for a specific task, like the Penfed card for gas or Discover IT for online shopping. Rewards cards can either give cash back benefits or travel benefits, depending on the nature of the product.

Some cards are so good at what they provide that they are capped at a certain usage. For example, the Chase Freedom is capped at $1500 for the categories it does, which should be enough for a typical family with two vehicles in most situations (like fuel). I'm looking at the Amex BCP card since 6% on groceries is a big deal (and 3% on gas is good too). But that card is capped at $6000 a year before it reverts back to being a 1% card.

My family spends close to $20K on food every year and while my wife wants to cut that number down in 2013 (good luck with growing kids and a husband with a cooking hobby), it would be better if we could save more than $360 a year on groceries. I've not heard too much of people using both adults in the household to get their own card that isn't shared by the spouse in order to maximize this benefit. So instead of being limited to $6000 of groceries and $360 cash back, two people could do $12000 and $720 cash back.

Since credit is extended to a person in the case of a credit card and spousal credit profiles are independent, does anyone have experience with doing this? I can't see any downsides if both spouses have sufficient credit to each acquire their own card (outside of both paying the $75 fee which cuts the $720 cash back ceiling to $570.

Comments?
Cards:
American Express Platinum (NPSL)
Penfed Platinum Reward Visa ($28K)
Chase Freedom Visa ($25K)
Fidelity American Express ($20K)
American Express Blue Cash Preferred ($20K)
Bank of America Cash Rewards MasterCard ($20K)
Citi Thank You Preferred Visa ($9.5K)
Chase Sapphire Preferred ($7.5K)
US Bank Cash + Visa Signature ($7K)
Discover IT ($4K)


kcarter609
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Posts: 423
Joined: Thu Aug 09, 2012 7:54 am
Location: VA

Postby kcarter609 » Sun Feb 03, 2013 7:29 pm

It's definitely doable, and if what your after is cash back rather than reward points, what you say makes sense.

Active Cards:
Chase Freedom 10+10 Visa Signature ($9k Limit - 8/2012)
Chase Sapphire Preferred ($10k Limit - 2/2013)
Chase Ink Plus ($7k Limit - 2/2013)
Discover IT ($9.5k Limit - 10/2012)
AMEX Zync (No Pre-set Limit - 1/2010)
AMEX Blue Cash Everyday ($20k Limit - 1/2013 - Backdate to 1/2010)

FutureBillionaire
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Joined: Sun Jun 19, 2011 2:37 pm
Location: Down South

Postby FutureBillionaire » Mon Feb 04, 2013 12:01 pm

I highly recommend the Penfed Platinum Rewards as well. 5x points on gas and 3x points on groceries with no cap.
Gas: Discover It, Penfed Platinum Rewards x2, Chase freedom, Citi TYP
Plane tickets: CSP
Groceries: AMEX BCP, Penfed Platinum Rewards,Citi TYP
Clothes: Express, Amex BCP, Discover IT
Amazon: Citi Forward, Cash +
Restaurants: Citi Forward, Chase Freedom, Discover IT, CSP
Hotels and other travel: Discover Escape, CSP
Movies: BofA travel rewards visa signature(fandango), Discover IT, Citi Forward, Freedom
Bars, clubs, tomfoolery: CSP, Citi Forward, Discover IT, Freedom
Balance transfers: Kroger 123 rewards
Bill Pay: Chase Ink Plus, Citi Forward
Everyday spending: Bofa Accelerated cash rewards amex, Discover Escape

Sevenfeet
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Posts: 532
Joined: Thu Jan 17, 2013 7:20 pm
Location: United States

Postby Sevenfeet » Mon Feb 04, 2013 12:34 pm

I wasn't that interested in doing gift cards or merchandise cards as the cash back reward but then I saw that you can do Visa pre-paid with them so that makes rewards with them much more flexible. Now I get why this card is so popular with the folks around here.

That means that using this card would save my family a solid $600 a year on groceries if we didn't change anything. Of course, adding that to doing the Amex BCP would end up being $360+$390 for a total of $740 in a given year. Then add another $250 or so savings in fuel purchases over the year gets you to a cool $1000. Not bad.
Cards:

American Express Platinum (NPSL)

Penfed Platinum Reward Visa ($28K)

Chase Freedom Visa ($25K)

Fidelity American Express ($20K)

American Express Blue Cash Preferred ($20K)

Bank of America Cash Rewards MasterCard ($20K)

Citi Thank You Preferred Visa ($9.5K)

Chase Sapphire Preferred ($7.5K)

US Bank Cash + Visa Signature ($7K)

Discover IT ($4K)



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