Do Employers Check Credit Scores? Interview with Kai Yaniz – MPSOS192

Interview with Kai Yaniz [1:00]

Kai and I have something in common: We both left the comfort of a regular paycheck to focus on helping others with their personal finances.

In our conversation we discuss:

  • Why Americans allow themselves to become trapped in debt
  • How much responsibility do we place on the education system to teach children and young adults about financial literacy
  • The truth about employers pulling credit scores or credit reports
  • The 5 Dangers of Buying Cheap and “Splaving”

Follow Kai Yaniz on

I Can't Live Without My Smartphone [19:00]

This article first appeared on

It started so innocently: We needed phones in case our daughter was hurt or if our car broke down. Back then, circa 2005, all we needed was a dial tone from a device that wasn't connected to the kitchen wall.

Today our devices allow my entire family, including long lost relatives, to reach me at a moment’s notice for $162 a month. It didn’t use to be that expensive. My wife started out with a $30 a month plan for 100 minutes of calling time and barely used it. Ah, the good old days.

Then we discovered texting, which had its own fee structure and usage limits. Over time the old hardware was traded in for greater battery life and crystal clear screens. What began as simple wireless devices evolved into super-fast connections to anyone and everyone in the world!

I can't live without my smartphone

LL Cool J said it best [ 20:13]

My smartphone, believe me, I like it close

I'm the man with the text who can rock a post

Walkin’ down the street, to the hardcore beat

While my iPhone 6 vibrates each Tweet Tweet

I'm sorry if you can't understand

But I need a smartphone inside my hand

Don't mean to insult other citizens

When I chat in the stalls, it shouldn't offend

OK, I embellished the words a tiny little bit — but someone could do a remix and lay down a new track to make this an instant hit!

Life is so much better with a smartphone. It’s my scheduler and note-taker. I can communicate with anyone in the world instantly through Facebook and Twitter.

At this point our shiny devices are ingrained into our normal workflow. I can't imagine what I'd do at networking events without the ability to send my electronic business card to their smartphone via SMS.

There are so many reasons for me to keep it around; I couldn't live without my smartphone.

Doomed to keep my iPhone

I’m sure we could find better things to do with $162 a month than give it to the phone company, I'm just not sure I want to.

I could learn to carry a pad of 3×5 cards in my pocket. It would force me to memorize phone numbers again.

I would need to stash some quarters away when I need to make and emergency ph..…Wait a minute. Where did all the pay phones go?

I guess that settles it: I have to keep my smartphone!

This article was a trick

While most of this article was a personal testimony, I wrote it to expose the way we justify our desires for luxury items to the detriment of our personal finances.

We train ourselves to “need” things that really are not important. Does this mean you should go out and get a burner phone or cut the cable down to basic?

The answer depends on your personal finances. Are you reaching your financial goals of saving, investing and paying off debt?

Where does a smartphone fall in your list of goals?

To find out how viable it is to keep a smartphone, cable package or wine of the month membership, I ask you take a moment to sit down with a sheet of paper.

Make a list of everything you spend money on within a typical month. Then re-write the list in order of importance (food is most important, then housing and utilities, transportation, etc.). Next, write down how much you spend on each item and start subtracting the expenses from your monthly take-home pay.

Determine how far down the list you can go before the money runs out.

You've just created a prioritized spending list. If you ran out of money before getting to the Caribbean cruise then ask yourself if that’s OK. If not, are there ways to increase the household’s income?

Finally, if something of more importance is not reached, then the household’s spending does not reflect your values.

What is more important to you? Completing the above exercise will help you discover how badly you want something versus how much you truly need something and will allow you to make changes before the iPhone 7 comes out.


Spend Your Values with my signature budgeting course to help you pay attention – not interest

 To find out more visit

Online budget course married couples

Ponda from the Honda [26:00]

If you have time to research credit cards and build credit then you have time to budget and get your assets in line! 

If you only had time for one or the other then why focus on that which puts you into debt? Instead, put your attention into  the one that builds wealth and focuses on financial security. 

Pay attention – not interest!

Disney spent a lot of time and energy studying the behavior of visitors. They went as far as figuring how far apart they should place the trash cans. Disney knows just how far you will walk before giving up looking for a trash can and throwing your garbage on the ground. Weird, huh? 

Creepy? Kinda.

Brilliant? Absolutely!

What would happen if you spend just a few minutes every week thinking about your finances?

  • Bills would be paid early. Money would be deposited into savings.
  • Informed decisions could be made about investment choices. 
  • Credit worthiness would be improved. 
  • Holes in your budget would be uncovered. 
  • Lower cell phone contracts would be negotiated. 
  • Goals would be reached. 
  • And wealth would be built. 

Isn't that what we should be doing?

How can you start paying attention?

Keep listening to this show or the Financial Wellness Show

Take my Virtual Budgeting Course video series

Sign up for financial coaching

Links mentioned in this episode:

Spending Our Values webinar
Virtual Budget Coaching Course

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1 Comment

  • simona

    Reply Reply February 7, 2017

    The more I read posts about debt-reduction and personal finance, the more I realize that the voice questioning the whole premise of credit scoring is in the minority. It really is incredible how credit scores have become a sort of sacred cow. It’s all about keeping the debt machine going. Thanks for using your voice.

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