As a part of the loan application process, they had to run a credit check with a credit score. My credit score has actually gone down a bit, from the low 800’s to the 790’s. This has me oddly bummed, feeling like I must have done something wrong.
A part of me takes solace in the fact that my score is, according to the report, higher than 99.5% of other Americans. I take solace in it at a personal level, but find it a bit depressing on a societal level. All I have really consciously done to maintain this high score is pay my bills on time. Even then, I have missed a few, but I guess never enough to have the credit agencies alerted?
It seems to me that at least a quarter of the population should have the same credit score as I do, or higher. Ideally, over half. That a lot of people simply cannot do that is actually sort of depressing. Not to assign universal blame, because by “cannot” I mean “despite being responsible, do not have the means” as well as “could if responsible, but is irresponsible so can’t.”
I don’t see myself voting for Elizabeth Warren any time soon.
My own observational experience with people who have bad credit is mostly with people who could pay their bills if they were sufficiently responsible but are not. Which actually says more about me than it does the average person with a low credit score. People I know come disproportionately from the the upper-middle or lower-upper or at least the solid middle class.
I wonder how much of this sort of thing colors our perception of the people struggling to make it by. Among people like me, I mean. If most of the people you know in financial trouble are there because of mistakes that they’ve made, and if you come from a background where financial responsibility leads to good financial results, then it becomes harder to relate to those who are struggling. It becomes easy to see that guy as being the equivalent of the guy who screwed up a good hand, instead of having a bad hand to begin with. It becomes easy to be removed from the entire notion of having a bad hand.
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