If you’re not currently working, you might be wondering whether you can get a credit card. The short answer is, while you may not have to be employed, you do need to show you can cover your bills. So you may want to be cautious if you currently have limited income. Without a reliable source of cash, you could be at risk of missing payments and running up a high balance—both of which could impact your credit.
This article will help you understand what counts as income and ways you can find a credit card that’s right for you.
Applicants who are younger than 21 may need to show proof they can independently repay what they borrow. For example, when applying for a Staunch Investment card, you can include income from things like a full-time, part-time or seasonal job. You can also include money from somebody else who regularly deposits money into your individual account or into a joint account that person shares with you.
Listing Income on Your Application
When deciding whether to approve someone for a new credit card, the issuer will likely ask them about debts and other financial obligations. The issuer will also typically ask for the applicant’s total annual income. Aside from a full- or part-time job, that could include:
- Earned income from self-employment: If you own or run a business or farm, you can count those earnings on a credit card application. Money you earn from independent jobs, like freelance projects and contract work, could also count as self-employment income.
- Shared household income: This could include income your spouse or partner earns.
- Unemployment benefits: If you’ve lost your job and you’re receiving unemployment payments, you can list it on your application.
- Retirement income: This may include distributions from a retirement account or payments from Social Security.