Credit in America: Myth Busting and Case Making to Expand Credit Building for Low-Income Americans

Without good credit, most Americans would find it difficult to rent an apartment, respond to an emergency, or qualify for a mortgage. Yet, more than one-quarter of Americans have poor credit or no credit score. At the same time, people with credit are often conflicted and uncomfortable with how entangled it is with debt. Mixed messages about the perils and perks of credit contribute to collective misconceptions among the general public. Meanwhile, having poor or no credit continues to burden low-income Americans, leaving them with high transaction costs and limiting their opportunities.

The Urban Institute invites you to a discussion led by Washington Post syndicated columnist Michelle Singletary, where researchers, practitioners, and policymakers will delve into the myths and facts about credit, why those views are so persistent, and why credit building should be expanded for low-income Americans. We will also debut a new video and fact sheet that explore commonly held myths about credit, the facts that bust those myths, and the cost of poor or no credit.


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