Wednesday, December 26, 2012

'It was really awkward because he kept telling me that I was the perfect girl for him, but that a low credit score was his deal-breaker...'

Times have changed, I guess. My credit was shot when I met my future wife. And I was working minimum wage and driving a beaten down Toyota 2x4 pickup. I had a smokin' hot physique back in the day, so I guess that explains it.

In any case, a great piece at the New York Times, "Perfect 10? Never Mind That. Ask Her for Her Credit Score":
As she nibbled on strawberry shortcake, Jessica LaShawn, a flight attendant from Chicago, tried not to get ahead of herself and imagine this first date turning into another and another, and maybe, at some point, a glimmering diamond ring and happily ever after.

She simply couldn’t help it, though. After all, he was tall, from a religious family, raised by his grandparents just as she was, worked in finance and even had great teeth.

Her musings were suddenly interrupted when her date asked a decidedly unromantic question: “What’s your credit score?”

“It was as if the music stopped,” Ms. LaShawn, 31, said, recalling how the date this year went so wrong so quickly after she tried to answer his question honestly. “It was really awkward because he kept telling me that I was the perfect girl for him, but that a low credit score was his deal-breaker.”

The credit score, once a little-known metric derived from a complex formula that incorporates outstanding debt and payment histories, has become an increasingly important number used to bestow credit, determine housing and even distinguish between job candidates.

It’s so widely used that it has also become a bigger factor in dating decisions, sometimes eclipsing more traditional priorities like a good job, shared interests and physical chemistry. That’s according to interviews with more than 50 daters across the country, all under the age of 40.

“Credit scores are like the dating equivalent of a sexually transmitted disease test,” said Manisha Thakor, the founder and chief executive of MoneyZen Wealth Management, a financial advisory firm. “It’s a shorthand way to get a sense of someone’s financial past the same way an S.T.D. test gives some information about a person’s sexual past.”
Actually, Ms. LaShawn has some pretty great teeth --- and then some.

RTWT at that top link.

Added: I can't resist adding this passage:
Lauren Dollard, a 26-year-old assistant at a nonprofit in Houston, said her low credit score had helped to stall her romantic plans. Her boyfriend is wary of marrying her until she can significantly pay down the more than $150,000 she owes in student loans and bolster her credit score, she said.
I personally wouldn't marry someone who ran up that much in college debt. The numbers I read about in student loan debt these days are literally obscene. No one should ever take out that much debt for any kind of degree, any kind, including an attorney, doctor, or whatever. You start out your professional life in financial bondage. Talk about a higher education bubble. Oh brother...