Life After Bad Credit
As the old cliche goes: “Bad things happen to good people”. Problems beyond their control arise all the time that prohibit people from making good on their debts. Sudden lay-offs, unexpected illnesses, and 18-year-olds with mailboxes full of credit card offers are just a few of the culprits that can send a person into a downward spiral of financial ruin. But as bad as it may seem, bad credit is not the end of the world. With the proper regiment of counseling, discipline and common sense, one can experience life after bad credit.
Credit counseling is an excellent place to start. This is where you sit down one on one with a counselor who will assist you in setting a budget for yourself and in many cases, help you and your creditors reach a common ground in your effort to pay off your debts. Keep in mind that it is in those creditors’ best interest for you to pay them what you owe. Since debtor’s jails no longer exist, they are very willing to work with people who exhibit a true willingness to pay. In the end, this provides a good reflection of your trustworthiness to those in position to extend credit to you, putting your feet back on the path to good credit.
Secondly, a complete overhaul of your spending mind is required. What that means is that you have to strip away the mindset which would have once led you to buy out of want rather than out of need. Remember that good credit is a privilege. And as is the case with most privileges, it must be earned. That includes sacrificing other than what is absolutely necessary. It will probably be difficult at first, particularly for compulsive spenders, but with practice it will become a rewarding habit.
Finally, there’s nothing like exercising good old common sense to keep yourself out of trouble. If you can’t afford it, don’t buy it; live within your means. That’s not to say that it’s never okay to indulge yourself. After all, you only live once. The very occasional splurge CAN be accomplished by allowing a few extra dollars in your monthly budget to save for luxury items. Always resist the urge to pay for these items on credit which would incur finance and other charges. The inconvenience of having to wait months before you can call it your own might seem discouraging, but it’s a sacrifice that could save you from backsliding into a financial abyss. Credit and charge cards should be used for emergencies only.
In summary, bad credit CAN stand between you and many of the things you want and need. But it doesn’t necessarily define who you are and you don’t have to let it ruin your life. Through planning, discipline, and sacrifice, you can make it a part of your past never to be revisited.