How Arnita Johnson, who had debt from 25 credit cards, became owner of business worth millions

Abu Mubarik January 26, 2022
Arnita Johnson-Hall is the owner of Luxurious Credit and AMB Credit Consultants. Photo credit: Arnita Johnson-Hall via Business Insider

In life, one’s experience could inspire him or her to start a venture. For instance, Jeff Austin was inspired to start Plant-Based Jeff owing to his own experience with obesity. In 2017, Austin was not only sick but overweight and had a toxic mindset. He was on eight different pharmaceutical medications every single day. He changed his lifestyle when he watched the award-winning documentary called What the Health on Netflix.

Similarly, entrepreneur Tania Speaks started organic skincare brand Tania Speaks Organic Skincare after she was bullied by her peers for her bushy eyebrows. She later tried to cut off her eyebrows but ended up cutting herself and was sent to a hospital. Years down the line, she has turned her traumatic experience into a startup.

The experience of Arnita Johnson is no different from the experiences of the entrepreneurs highlighted above. Her experience of living on one assisted government program to another led her to start a credit advisory agency.

She launched Luxurious CREDIT™, a credit consulting agency and financial education empire after being fed up with living on one credit to another. Today, her firm is regarded as one of the fastest-growing Black-owned credit consulting firms in the country.

Johnson graduated high school with good credit but six months after graduation, she “messed” it up. She had accumulated 25 different credit cards and could no longer keep up with the payments.

“When you have good credit, credit card offers are literally thrown at you and I believe I got addicted to just being approved. I was working a low paying job and just could no longer keep up with the payments,” XONecole quoted her as saying.

“I let the credit cards go believing in the myth that after seven years, those credit cards would disappear from my credit report. I was 18 years old and felt that within seven years, I would be 25 and I could just live with my bad credit.”

Although she desperately wanted to keep her credit cards in good standing, she had a baby and she was just trying to get by with what she had. She worked long hours at low-paying jobs and went to school at night in order to survive.

She later saw a job opening that was offering an annual salary of $60,000 but she lost it because of her poor credit score. However, she was fortunate enough to land a job at a car dealership and while there, she saw the difference between how people were treated with bad credit versus those who had good credit.

This prompted Johnson to pause and have a rethink how she uses her money. She created a “strategic budget” and also lived below her means. Through this strategy, she was able to pay down her debts and made sure that every dollar she spent fit into her financial plans. Eventually, it became her habit.

“It took a major shift in my priorities and I picked up other hobbies. Instead of hanging out with the girls on Friday nights, I would purchase a cheap bottle of wine and cuddle up with a good book. Instead of taking the kids to the movies and pizza, we watched movies on Netflix and made homemade pizzas. I soon realized that I was also saving on gas because I was staying home more.”

Saving as much as she could became her next target and she successfully developed a habit of saving in no time. According to her, she got to this point in her life through self-motivation and discipline.

“Because I was living paycheck to paycheck and was pinching any extra money to pay off debts, I found saving any extra money difficult to do. I was very impatient and felt that the little money I was putting back just wasn’t enough. I decided to turn off my cable, shop around for cheaper car insurance, and cell phone plans. The extra money I saved each month went straight to a savings account. Starting to see my savings account grow little by little was very therapeutic and exciting for me,” she said.

And by investing in her credit education, Johnson was able to come out of poverty. She told Business Insider that she spent several hours at the library studying how credit works. She then found that her credit score was low because of errors in her credit report. So she did not only learn how to use credit constructively but also how to request corrections to her credit report. She saw good results after some time and then got educated as a credit consultant.

She then decided to start her firm in order to teach others how she went about clearing her debts.

Last Edited by:Mildred Europa Taylor Updated: January 26, 2022


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