If you know me well, you know I’ve had my fair share of financial woes since going through my first divorce. It took me 8 years to recover and get my credit score back over 600, only to watch it nose dive after my second divorce. I know it will take me at least 10 years to recoup again if I ever do. The first time, it took bankruptcy and 8 years. Who knows what will become of me this time around.
When I was married the first time, we did all the right things and built up our credit score, buying things on credit and then paying them off when we got the bill. We could get as much and as often as we wanted. When we both were working, our score soared to almost perfect (of course, there is no such thing as perfect). That’s where it stayed until the divorce went through. I was one of the unfortunate women in the world to end up with a female judge who hated women (no I’m not paranoid, she got thrown off the bench 6 months after my case for discrimination against women. I couldn’t afford the $5000 to appeal). I got stuck with all the debt since my ex lied about and hid his income. She even broke the law when she lowered his child support payment lower than a judge was allowed to do per Florida State law. After two years of trying to pay and trying to work deals with no luck, I gave up and filed bankruptcy. It was one of the best decisions of my life!
The second was living on cash for a year. It taught me so much about budgeting and making purchasing decisions. When you go through a bankruptcy, it does wipe the slate clean. But it also puts a huge sign on your back that says charge this person the highest interest rate because they’re just happy you’ll lend to them! Even after I got my score over 600 and had paid off several cars and mortgages, they continued to always charge me higher interest rates on everything. You know, you had that time back in 2000. It could happen again, ya never know!
The point is I don’t know a whole lot of people these days who haven’t had a rough time or two in their lives. Shit, most people I know, no matter how much they’re making, they’ve had to juggle payments before. I worked in the banking industry so I understand the undercurrent of networking the financial world does and how the lending vs deposit programs are played. Many I’ve talked to during the past several months in these economical times we find ourselves, really could care less if the banks and credit systems collapse. The truth of the matter is the great credit rates are only for about 3% of the population and we all know who those people are. The rest of us don’t qualify. We’ll never qualify again! We’ll continue to pay the highest rates for the rest of our lives while they promise to treat us better next time if we do good. We are the people who make the least yet we are always the people who pay the most.
So what does the average person need these systems for anyway?? As far as I can see, the credit reporting system is nothing more than an sham of an interface to provide excuses for the banks to charge us all more. They will see one small mark and be able to bump you up a basis point or two. They can also then justify bumping up the fees to process the request. It cost more since you’re complicated. Again, you’re not perfect, that creates problems!! What if we all just said “NO”, we’re not allowing the credit reporting systems access to our information anymore. With the Patriot Act and Rights to Privacy laws in place nowadays, where did I ever sign up for these companies to access my information and collect a database on me?? Where did I sign up for them to do all these things with my personal information like creating a storage bin of shit on my life?? If I have to sign for someone to pull this information, shouldn’t I have had to sign up to allow someone to collect it???
Why do I lose points to have someone pull my credit score?? Doesn’t that set up a system that discourages me from being able to shop around for the best rates and the best deals?? Why do I have to pay for information that is mine already, can be used against me and now they don’t even want to provide it to me while they show to others and get paid for it?? Wouldn’t it stand to reason that the information they provide to the customer is what the customer wants to buy so they can make more money from that customer?? If the credit reporting agencies were providing accurate stats in an approved manner, our information would rate differently. If 97% of the Americans credit score is the median average for normal credit rates, do you think the lenders would be paying for their services?? And who does make the decisions on where the lines are drawn between the rate charged vs score and getting to put us on the gouge with high interest rate list, THE BANKS? Isn’t all of this a major conflict of interest, all one sided toward those financial institutions 97% of Americans just bailed out???
The system was originally meant to be used as a way to protect the creditors from bad risk. Now it’s nothing more than a system abused to ramp up the rates charged. It’s a blantant misuse of our personal information, should be considered illegal and should be stopped. When I worked at the bank, there were strict regulations about the financial advisors not having access to customer asset records so they couldn’t specifically target high net worth clients. Why is our entire credit reporting system’s role considered any different than that?? Aren’t they using these systems to target except low net worth customers who really need their services done right. These systems are used solely for marketing purposes now. The way to follow what you do, target what they can sell you and charge you the most they figure they can get from you, ALL BASED ON INFORMATION GATHERED AND MANIPULATED WITHOUT OUR KNOWLEDGE OR PERMISSION!!
There’s several systems out there collecting our personal information, intimate details about our lives, without our knowledge and without our consent. When you go to apply for insurance, whether it be car, life, medical, etc., they can pull all kinds of good, juicy liittle details on your life. I found that out when I worked as an insurance agent. That’s how they justify charging everyone but the top 3% of Americans non-preferred rates for their insurance products. Every single time we make a move in our lives, it’s documented somewhere and they now use it as a way to see what they can sell us and how much they can charge us to buy it. If you owe on credit, chances are, you will be paying on that credit for the rest of your lives. Once they hook you, they own you for life!! That’s what they’re counting on!!
It’s time we get rid of that 3% rule and start letting the other 97% of Americans live life too. We make the least but we pay the most. We can never get ahead if we always pay the most, that’s Economics 101. The current credit reporting systems and financial systems assure the future of that unless they are overhauled. The entire system is against the average American!! Just think CitiGroup and AIG who took our money and blew it while Americans go without!!
What does the average American really get from their banking and financial institutions anyway?? The ability to pay bills! AND where does most of our bill money go to??