There are so many reasons a person’s credit makes a turn for the worse. Perhaps you mismanaged credit cards, took out a loan you couldn’t afford to repay, or suffered an unforeseen event. Despite knowing that these things negatively impact their credit history and score, some people do little to improve. Although there are several reasons for this, failure to understand the true impact of a bad credit score is at the top of the list.
Most people equate bad credit to the limited ability to get a mortgage, car loan, or credit card. Unfortunately, these are not the only possible outcomes. Let’s take a closer look at the financial impact of bad credit.
Higher Interest Rates
You may be able to get a personal loan, mortgage, or other financial product with bad credit, but it’s going to cost you a bit more. Since your credit history is riddled with red flags, lenders label you high-risk. If they’re going to approve you for a loan, they’ll offer it to you at a higher interest rate to offset the potential costs should you default. Although it may not seem like a big deal at the time, you could end up paying an additional several hundred if not thousands of dollars to borrow money simply because of your credit score.
Whether you’re trying to acquire a mortgage, find an apartment, or get your utility services shut on, be prepared to pay a higher deposit. Again, your adverse credit history sends the message that you’re unreliable. Therefore, companies that require deposits for products or services will want to lower their risks. One way of doing this is by asking for a higher deposit or downpayment.
Higher Car Insurance
Did you know your credit status could have an impact on how much you pay for car insurance? Auto insurance companies used what is known as a credit-based insurance score to determine the likelihood of you filing a claim. As you know, it’s the service provider’s responsibility to cover accident claims, which could cost them thousands of dollars.
If the insurance company is going to keep these costs low, they need to acquire customers that have low scores. Applicants with higher scores will have two outcomes – pay higher insurance premiums or get rejected.
Bad credit could prevent you from getting hired for a particular job. Believe it or not, some employers do a credit check on applicants to help them make an informed decision. While you would assume your financial history has nothing to do with your ability to perform a job, it does.
The truth is, your credit says more about you than you realize. For example, a record of missed payments or defaulted loans sends the message that you do not honor your word or responsibilities. Similarly, a high debt-to-income ratio could express financial distress, which could increase the likelihood that you’d steal or commit fraud.
Repossessions, Lawsuits, And Wage Garnishments
If you haven’t managed your credit cards, loans, and other financial obligations, it will catch up to you, eventually. An unpaid mortgage turns into foreclosure, a defaulted car loan results in repossession, and maxed out credit cards turn into lawsuits and wage garnishments. When you think about it, each of these outcomes is expensive. If you don’t have the means to cover it, you’ll end up having to file bankruptcy.
What To Do About Your Bad Credit
As you can see from above, having bad credit comes with significant financial consequences. Although improving your credit will take time, money, and effort, it’s worth the investment. Start by evaluating your credit history. Dispute anything that isn’t relevant to have it removed from your report.
Then, reach out to creditors and service providers to negotiate more affordable terms. If they offer you a settlement amount you can’t refuse, consider taking out a short-term loan. For example, you can find loans in Lubbock, TX and other cities in the US with a quick online search. Finally, commit to your new debt repayment plan to get your finances back on track.
You may have thought that bad credit wasn’t a big deal unless you wanted a house, car, or credit card, but that’s not completely accurate. Your credit is used in many areas of your life to determine whether you’re eligible, responsible, and credible as a consumer (or employee). As such, use the tips above to turn your credit history and score around for the better.