Not all employers check applicants’ credit, but pre-employment credit checks are becoming more common all the time. Many job seekers with blemished credit are understandably anxious that their ability to get the job they want will be damaged by their credit history. These four tips can help job seekers with poor credit find a job.
1. Bring Up Your Credit First
If your potential employer has disclosed that they do a credit check for employment or credit checks are typical in the industry, it can be a good idea to mention your credit problems before the company finds out by checking your credit. If you are upfront about your past credit issues, your interviewer may be more likely to continue the interview process, despite your credit report, than if it seems like you are attempting to conceal your financial problems.
2. Tell Your Interviewer How You Plan To Fix Your Credit
Before you go into your interview, come up with a plan to improve your credit and be prepared to explain your plan to your interviewer. Bring a copy of your credit report to the interview and explain how you intend to address issues such as late or missed payments, judgments or bankruptcy. You want to demonstrate to your potential employer that your financial problems are in the past and you are actively working to manage your money better in the present.
3. Explain Any Extenuating Circumstances
A lot of people have damaged credit due to job loss and other economic damage caused by recent recessions and the COVID-19 pandemic. If you are one of those people, explain the reasons your credit was damaged. Chances are your potential employer has heard similar stories and may cut you a break if they genuinely believe your problems were due to circumstances beyond your control and not lack of responsibility.
4. Take Advantage of Your Connections
If you have a friend or professional contact who can vouch for your character that may go a long way towards convincing a company to overlook your credit history. Be sure to maintain your networks and take advantage of any job leads your network turns up.
Poor credit history can make getting a job more difficult; however, it does not have to derail your job search. Having a plan to deal with your credit issues can help you overcome them and get the job you want.