“We actually cannot approve you for a mortgage because you don’t have any credit history…”
This is what Jane (not her real name) heard from her mortgage broker as she was getting ready to buy a house after her divorce finalized.
“How could this be? I’ve used a credit card for decades, I owned a house with my ex husband, how can I not have any credit!?”
While Jane was in shock, I had to explain to her that many of my clients, especially women, end up in that unfortunate situation.
Many women like Jane grow up in circumstances that don’t really allow them much space for learning financial literacy.
They always have the bills paid, they always have enough money to navigate day to day living but the “big stuff”, always seemed to be “handled” by someone else…a husband, a father and sometimes even an older sibling or family member.
More often than not that external “handling” is unknowingly harmful as Jane found out after she dug deeper into her situation:
- The credit card she did have was a supplemental one under her husband which means it contributed to his credit only
- While the house was under both names, the mortgage was under her husband which means it did not contribute to her rating
- All of the major purchases of appliances, cars, vacations etc were handled by her husband and she would simply contribute from her paycheck, again not contributing to her own credit rating
Despite paying her bills responsibly for years, Jane had nothing to show for it!
It was a painful lesson on top of a painful situation but fortunately it was the wake up call that Jane needed to finally take the power back in her financial certainty.
Together, we were able to set up a plan to get her credit active quickly and ironically because she was so in tune with it, by the time she did qualify for a mortgage she had an excellent rating that she may not have had had the above not happened to her.
The point here is that people spend most of their lives not knowing what they don’t know until it trips them up.
You may not be in Jane situations but the reality is Jane didn’t know she was in this situation until it was almost too late.
And to take things further, what could your own personal blindspots be costing you in opportunities? In more cash? In more freedom? In more financial certainty?
Everytime I talk to someone I can discover multiple “hidden gold in plain sight” opportunities and I enjoy that a lot more when someone isn’t in Jane’s situation!
So if we haven’t had a chat yet, what are you waiting for? Reply back and we can set up a quick 15min call =)