Boss Chicks has the scoop on putting an end to credit woes with Arnita Johnson, CEO of Luxurious Credit and AMB Credit Consultants!
To want more, do more, and see more! It’s the nature of a Boss Chick. One part of being a Boss Chick is being financially savvy and making wise decisions when it comes to our relationship with money. This includes credit! We know, credit scores are a taboo and touchy topic. In 2015, it’s time to stomp out those credit fears once and for all. One woman has the key!
We spoke to Arnita Johnson, certified credit consultant, credit miracle-worker (we’d say so!), and CEO of AMB Credit Consultants and Luxurious Credit. Flip over to the next page to get the exclusive wisdom of Ms. Johnson herself as she dishes on fearless finances, the AMB credit repair movement, and how you can win $1000 in her 2015 monthly giveaway!
Boss Chicks: What exactly does AMB Credit Consultants do?
Arnita Johnson: We are a credit consulting agency, and we are in the credit repair industry. What we do is promote credit awareness and make sure that our clients’ credit reports have accurate information. We also help correct credit reports, and help them establish credit so that they’re able to get approved for credit and are able to live that happy credit lifestyle that they deserve.
Boss Chicks: Do you have any personal experiences with bad credit?
Arnita Johnson: Absolutely! That’s exactly how the company started actually. I went from a 700 [credit scrore] to a 303 within a matter of months by applying cards that I didn’t need, late payments. I was told “don’t worry about it. In about seven years, all of this is going to come off of your credit anyway”, and in seven years, it did not. It actually got worse! Those accounts were resold to collection agencies. [By then] my credit scores looked twice as bad as it already was. So I went up for a job, and I was denied that job, and had an employee credit check. That’s when I knew it was due to my credit. At that point, I was working for another company, a claims company, and I was fired from that job. I [then decided] ‘I’m not going back to work’. I have repaired my own credit, I’ve done family and friends’, and it’s not as easy as people believe it is to be. That is when my mission started to be able to empower people on the importance of credit and so, it turned into this.
Boss Chicks: How important is it to clean up your credit? What are the reasons?
Arnita Johnson: You always want to make sure that your credit report is free of inaccurate information. The importance of making sure that your credit report is free of any inaccurate information is for the simple fact that [if it is not] it can deny you credit in the future. Anytime you are trying to apply for credit or establish credit, a home, a student loan, or you’re trying to advance in your career, a lot of times, a credit check is being used for those purposes as well. You want to make sure that whatever that person sees is the most accurate [and] correct information about you because that is your reputation.
Boss Chicks: What things tend to hurt our credit the most?
Arnita Johnson: Late payments, collection accounts, charge-offs, repossessions. Anything derogatory can hurt credit the most. I think the misconception about credit is ‘My credit isn’t that bad’. Well, that really is no such thing as ‘that bad’. It’s either good or it’s bad. Now of course, [newer] information hurts the credit report more [than] older accounts. But late payments, I would say, hurts the credit the most especially if they are new. Lenders are focused on what you are doing now. If they’re seeing that you have late payments now, then that is definitely going to give them [the impression] that something is going on now that you cannot pay your bills on time.
Boss Chicks: For people who have severely damaged credit, what can be done?
Arnita Johnson: I’ve helped thousands and I would always say that severely damaged credit is repairable. It may take a lot more time and discipline, because you have to change your habits. Once it [becomes] severely damaged, you definitely want to do something about it, but you want to change those habits as well. [This means] reestablishing your credit and paying your current bills on time while that inaccurate information is being challenged with the credit bureau. Just because your credit report is severely damaged, it doesn’t mean that the information is accurate. There are laws that companies have to abide by to make sure that information on your credit report is accurate, and if it is not, then it must be removed from the credit report. I’ve seen severely damaged [credit]. I’ve had severely damaged [credit], so it is definitely repairable. You just have to start somewhere.
Boss Chicks: A lot of people are skeptic when it comes to other credit consulting firms. What is different about AMB Credit Consultants?
Arnita Johnson: I honestly set out no to be like [other companies]. I put myself in front of my company so that people can know exactly who it is they are working with, as opposed to other companies. They kind of want to hide themselves just in case anything [goes wrong] then you won’t know who to point to. I wanted to make the difference to say ‘hey, I had bad credit and it is okay’. If only [people] were trying to do something about it. I feel like sharing my story and setting that example. Good credit has paved the way for me, especially being the single mother of two kids! There were times that I did not have the money, and I needed the credit to lean on. If I could share my story and give people the understanding of how important credit is, and to not be afraid of credit repair, then I’ve served my purpose and my company has served its purpose. Another thing that sets us aside from other credit repair companies is we actually teach you how to repair your credit.
Boss Chicks: It’s 2015! People have made their New Year’s financial resolutions. How can women start fresh and make better financial decisions?
Arnita Johnson: Just by [first] deciding to make that change. That is the first step. Then, creating a budget and a strategy on how they are going to save money, and pulling their credit report is the next step. Sometimes you have to actually see what is there.
Boss Chicks: Speaking of the new year, you are giving a way $1000 a month in 2015!
Arnita Johnson: Yes I am! That is called the ‘Worth the Investment’ project. Basically, how I started that was [keeping] myself on a budget and I’m very civil. I love to spend money but, I love to spend money that I can afford to spend! So, I created a ‘Worth the Investment’ account. It was just something to put back for myself because I’m always doing for others. I wanted to see if I could save $1000 a month. [I said] at the end of the month, I am going to take myself on a trip or a shopping spree, I don’t know what I’m going to do, but it will be for me. I started my journey on Instagram and it was an encouragement. About eight months in, it was just something that I was used to doing. I got comfortable [and] it was nothing to just transfer that money over to my ‘Worth the Investment’ account. In November, I just started thinking [back] about being a single parent and trying to start my new business with no one trying to help me financially. It was placed on my heart to just give it away, and that’s how I came up with it. I’m really excited about it!
Boss Chicks: In 2015, what more can we expect from you and AMB? Also, when is the next “Credit and Cupcakes” event?
Arnita Johnson: We’re going to start a tour, and our first ‘Credit and Cupcakes’ will be in Memphis in March. Also, ‘Worth the Investment’ will launch its non-profit. It is going to be giving back, paying it forward, and helping people. I just want to get out there and teach the importance of credit and have people to [understand] that bad credit is not a good thing! We need to start having good credit so that we will have something to pass down to our families. I want to share the experience with as many people as possible.
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