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student24680

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Authorized User versus my Own Credit Account
I am currently a college student that works part time. About 2 years ago, my mother made me an authorized user of one of her credit cards ($5500 limit). She does not use this card at all, and I have been able to pay off the balances each month (even when it hit $1000 for necessary purchases). The card has my name but the bill comes in as hers.

I am very confident I could apply for a credit card and pay it off correctly. When joining CreditKarma I was surprised to see the Chase Card I'm an AU on listed on my report since I never had to apply for this card.

My question is, is it better for my own personal credit to apply for my own credit card and use both (within reason) to build of loan credit for myself?

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Impact

Being an Authorized User on your mom's account means that the behavior on the account affects both of you, but her more so because she's the record-holder and you're basically just tagging along for the ride.

Authorized Users are great for those new or rebuilding credit but if you're able to responsibly have your own credit card and pay it off, then you should go for it.  Having an account solely on your own means the impact of the account's record and behavior will more significantly affect your credit history.

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If you're trying to get a mortgage they look to see if your accounts are your own or if you're an authorized user. Most lenders will require a certain number of trade lines to be your own. 

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