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Ask Amy: Credit card accounts churn up concern

Amy Dickinson, Tribune Content Agency on

Dear Amy: I need some advice. For the last five years, my husband has been churning credit cards (opening up credit card accounts solely for the opening bonus, then closing them after the bonus is received). He opens cards in both his name and mine.

This is legal, as far as I know.

He's very organized, and we've never accumulated any interest or any fees.

I've recently started to feel uneasy about this and want him to stop doing this using my name.

When he started doing this, I was young and thought he knew best, so I didn't question him.

I'm worried that he will get annoyed with me for suddenly not feeling good about this. I'm worried that he will be upset for my sudden interest in financial matters and the fact that he will lose out on half of the bonus money he receives from opening these accounts.

 

Thanks!

– Churning concerns

Dear Churning: Credit card “churning” is the practice of opening a new card that offers a bonus (for instance: “Earn a $200 bonus after you spend $500 on purchases in the first three months from account opening.”)

Churners open the card, spend the $500 on expenses they would have paid, anyway, collect the bonus in the form of cash back or reward points, and then stop using the card (or close it) once the bonus has been received and spent.

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