credit worthy

i was in a discussion the other day and it went a little something like this…

imagine you were married, had a few kids and after several years for various reasons you divorced.  you were left with nothing and had to rebuild your life.  your finances were wrecked but you were working toward repairing your credit.  does that mean you are ineligible for dating?

there were some who felt that if someone is working to repair their credit that person is still a viable candidate.  i hold the opposite view.  as i was once told, your credit is like a vital organ.  it must be exercised and maintained to avoid the need for repair.  what sense does it make to hook up with someone whose credit score is in the 400s and yours is 811?

this hypothetical conversation has been on my mind for a few days now.  while in the midst of my morning ritual i began to wonder, what kind of credit did these two people have before they got married such that a divorce left one or both of them “rebuilding their credit?”

i’ve heard story upon story from women who say, “my husband messed up my credit when we divorced.”  how is that possible?  as a married couple you are both responsible to pay ALL bills on time, not just the ones that come in your name.  credit is damaged when we default on loans, consistently fail to pay creditors on time, or sign up for so many credit cards that our score is in the toilet.

since that discussion i’ve been calculating. mastercard:  $3K; auto loan:  $6K, mortgage: $175K.  i don’t want to absorb anyone else’s debt and i’ve set a plan in motion so that no one has to absorb mine. i make no apology for desiring to be with a man who has, among other things, healthy credit.  i see no reason to stack the deck against my future happiness.

there is no need to jump into the ditch with a person in order to lift them out.  you can be in love and want to marry someone whose credit is in shambles but what will it cost you in the end?  when you decide to buy a house will it be your credit extended on behalf of you both?  when he needs to get another car, will you have to co-sign or put it in your name to avoid 12% interest?

sometimes i think we do strange things in the name of love when maybe we need to stop and think about the lasting impact of our decision and proceed with caution instead rushing in with eyes wide open and facing trouble later.

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