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My Money Aha! Moment: 3 People on the Credit Wake-Up Call That Changed Their Lives

By Molly Triffin, LearnVest, June 17, 2015 – Ever had a wake-up call that, in an instant, changed the course of your life?

Maybe you realized the person you were dating was The One, or it suddenly hit you that it was time to make a career 180 to pursue your true professional calling.

We talked to three people who know the feeling—only their aha! moments had nothing to do with romance or work.

Rather, their lightbulb moments helped them realize the impact that their credit scores and history had on their ability to achieve coveted goals—from growing a business to landing a new gig.

Curious what they learned about the power of those three little digits? Read on—and don’t be surprised if their stories trigger an aha! moment of your own.

“The Day My 580 Credit Score May Have Cost Me a Job”

“Edgar Cerecerez, 29, a marketer in Lake Forest, Calif.

The Back Story “About nine years ago, I applied for my first credit card. But instead of taking advantage of a fresh opportunity to establish great habits, I let my impulses run wild.

The first mistake I made: taking out a car loan with a 25% interest rate. I didn’t realize how bad a deal that was—I was just excited about driving a tiny sports car.

When the car broke down months later, I charged the repairs, instead of paying cash. And when I found a $3,000 sound system I liked, I paid for that with credit, too.

Around that time, I lost my part-time job—and the ability to make payments on my cards. So I just stopped, and simply ignored the creditor calls that followed. I knew it wasn’t right, but I had no idea the level of damage I’d done.

My Credit Aha! Moment Fast-forward five years, when I was about to graduate from college and started hunting for entry-level marketing gigs. One day, as I was reading articles about the qualities employers look for, I was shocked to learn that good credit is often a major consideration.”

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Originally published by LearnVest.com on June 10, 2015 

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