Financial independence can be a daunting goal, but with proper guidance, knowledge, and discipline, you can definitely achieve it. Host Scott Carson interviews Merrill Chandler from CreditSense about the ways to hack the credit system matrix to help you achieve financial independence through lines of credit from banks. In his book, Are You F’able or Just F’ed?, Merrill talks about fundability and gaming the system underneath it with cheat codes. He talks about how you can take control over your approvals as well as the types of unconscious borrower behaviors to avoid. Take the opportunity to break free from what the conventional says and reach for the kind of financial freedom you want in this episode.
Listen to the podcast here:
Hacking The Credit Matrix with Merrill Chandler
We have our good buddy and one of our sponsors for the show. We have Merrill Chandler from CreditSense joins us from Salt Lake. How are you, Merrill? Are you not traveling?
I’m not in the world. I’m at home.
That’s good stuff there because you have been burning the candle at both ends out teaching classes and speaking everywhere. It’s good to be home.
I’m still working like a mad man because we’ve got some great things we’re announcing. What did you do? You left for Europe for almost a month.
Yeah, a few of months ago.
I had something like that coming to me.
Do me a favor. Do not start whining because I remember you going somewhere for a month or two to write a book in Italy.
That’s what we’re talking about now. You mean the three and a half weeks. It is so cliche, but we rented a villa in Tuscany.
We’ve been there. Where did you stay at in Tuscany?
We were 30 miles south of Florence. It’s absolutely beautiful. It’s in the foothills and it had a pool. That’s where the outline of my book and all of the contents that were built to drive the book came from. It also has the undergirding of a podcast. Everything that is our content comes from this massive three pages of 11×17 outline that we created out there.
For our audience, Merrill, why don’t you share exactly who you are and what CreditSense is before we dive in any further with your ideas and fun stuff?
I’m Merrill Chandler. I have a unique background. I don’t know how I tripped and fell into this, but I co-founded Lexington Law Firm in 1992. I’ve been in the consumer and business credit space forever. It feels like forever anyway. Our brand is FundingHackers.com and we’re about the inside scoop, the inside track on how to qualify for personal business credit and get the funding we need to buy notes, to do deals, to write a check and make something happen with what we call trophy credit lines, business credit lines that are prime plus 3%. We’ve been doing this forever and we spent a lot of time working on the engine of the car. 2019 is about us putting that engine into that Formula One and we’re now going to take it on.
You have been doing a great job. You’ve changed a little bit of yourself. You’re out speaking, you’re on this podcast or guesting in other people’s podcasts. You’ve been a guest on here for a while and you’ve got your own podcast.
Yeah, but the big news that has been coming, we’ve mentioned it in previous versions of this, but the launch date, everything is in stone. We are now in print mode for all the books. I’m releasing my reveal-all funding hack extraordinaire Are You F’able or Just F’ed? book. It’s my first book. It should have been written many years ago and it wasn’t. We reserved all of our tech, the funding hacks and all of these insider secrets until our high net worth clients do exactly what they’ve done so well. That is to be able to acquire credit lines, commercial loans and position themselves in a way where lenders want to give them money.
That sounds absurd at this top-level, but something magical happened in the last few years. This is the back of my book, so I’ll just paraphrase it, but it’s hard-hitting. For 500 years, lenders have had 100% of the power in the borrower-lender relationship. The way that the lenders had the power is, “We have the money, prove that you can pay it back.” We call that full documentation. “I want to see your financials. I want to see your paychecks. I want to see your employment history. Prove that you can pay this back.” That has all radically changed. Lenders, in order to protect their money, their self-interest, they have given all of their power to automatic underwriting software such that not a single human being ever looks at an application.
They win when a human being never has to look at an app. They trust the software so much that they’ve given all their lending authority to the software. What most people don’t know and the dots that this book connects is if the software has all the authority to approve, that means that every borrower who knows what the software needs to get approved has all the power for their own approvals. This is gargantuan. That power dynamic after 500 years has now shifted. The book is all about that. Are you f’able? Are you fundable or are you just f’ed? Because you’re only fundable if they give you money, but you’re not talking to a human being, you can’t make your case to a human being.
The whole idea is to have your data points, have your application and have your credit bureau data and have all of your information. It’s all data now. The second you know what a lender software needs to get an approval, you get approved. That puts all of the power in the borrower’s hands if you know what the underwriting criteria are. It just so happens that at FundingHackers.com, the release of this book is to review how this power shift occurred. There are chapters on all of these, but it’s how the lenders have been distracting us with scores over here so they can measure behaviors over here. That software is what measures the borrower behaviors. If you’ve known how to behave and paying your bills on time, it’s one out of 40 ways that they track. If you know what they’re measuring and we make our behaviors fit that, no human being ever looks at our credit file again. We get approved because we’re matching these underwriting guidelines. We have a boot camp that explains all these. I want to focus on the sixteen chapters that are in this book because we go from the old paradigm through this transition and the new paradigm of you having all the power over your own approvals.
That’s phenomenal because it’s all about gaming the system. You got the cheat codes as you said before because it is all software-based and it’s all based on numbers. It’s all based on dots and zeros. If you have the right dots and the right zeros lined up, it can streamline through that for you. A big thing for our audience is that first and foremost, CreditSense, FundingHackers is not a credit repair company. Let’s get that straight to the point. It’s not about repairing your credit. It’s all about taking what you have because you’ve got derogatories, late payments and stuff like that. That’s only a small fraction.
I would highly encourage you to go back to the two episodes that we’ve had with Merrill because we’ve broken down those different myths to get you on your funding on the commercial side and also the biggest credit myths on your personal side. I want to make sure the audience realizes you’ve got FundingHackers.com. You’ll see a lot of great stuff on there. You teach boot camps about once a month, usually around the third or last weekend of the month. That’s an online thing. It has sixteen chapters. We are talking about the transitioning away from having to go in and speak to that stuffy banker with your presence to being an online system now for the most part.
I’ve been editing the book for the last few months. I wrote the damn thing. I’m like, “Are you kidding me? This is so elegant of a solution to shift the power to the borrower.” The only power that the borrower has had for 500 years with lenders is whether to ask for money or not, to accept money if it was offered or not. It’s not how to change the borrower’s behavior. There are many little hacks. I don’t like saying gaming the system because that’s the weasel way through this thing when we’re credit eagles versus credit seagulls.
You do discuss your credit karma animal there.
That’s in the book and since they measure unconscious behavior, I review nine different types of unconscious borrower behavior. I liken them to different animals and it’s like your funding totem, your financial money totem and what do you act unconsciously. This isn’t about your conscious decision making. That’s why the lenders have distracted this with these credit scores because credit scores are only the third or fourth most important metric in a lending decision. Your credit score is more of a distraction. It keeps you focused on watching the rise and fall of this score over here so that they can measure your unconscious behavior and it’s called performance data. Your lender has all your performance data and your credit profile holds all of your historical performance data from all your collection of lenders.
I don’t want to geek out too much. You got to come to the boot camp for that. I’m proud of how simple, elegant and effortless the book language is. Brad, one of my partners has a software where he evaluates how the reading level of my language is. When I first started out, the reason why I spent the last few months editing it was because the language that I used was all technical language. Instead of using simple words like, “Get a credit report,” I’d be like “Acquire a credit report.” For many of us, we know what “acquire” is, but I’m trying to make this accessible to every single person in the country. I came down off of grade fourteen to grade twelve levels. We’re in the freshmen to sophomore-level so that it’s understandable. They can read the words, but I want them to get it.
I want everybody to have power over their own funding decisions. You are in charge of your approvals, not the lenders. The lender’s software is here to verify that you’re behaving according to funding metrics, but you’re in charge of how you behave. This is what’s glorious about this. That’s the whole point of the book as I walk us through this. I do want to mention that score thing again. I discussed it in a couple of different chapters. There’s no such thing as a credit score. If you listen to anybody, “What’s your credit score?” You’re like, “Which bureau and which software? Are you using the marketing software, the FICO software or are you using an auto mortgage, bank card, health care?”
There’s a zillion credit scores. We talked about all of that in the book so that you can come to awareness. My end game is for you to stop stepping on the funding land mines and change your behavior so you’re in charge of your approvals. I’m thrilled that people finally have access so they can put the book down and go take a look and read it again. It’s more difficult to do that in other ways. In my presentations, it’s one and done. People are like, “What did he say? I don’t know what that means. What does funding metrics mean?” I’ve been able to focus and make it as elegant, understandable and intelligible as possible.
Merrill, why do you think nobody else is out doing what you’re doing?
I believe it’s because I have such a unique background in an organization that has revolutionized credit repair. I get to look at tens of thousands of before and after credit reports. I get to reverse engineer as it were the FICO scoring model. I get to go back to meet with the CEO and the FICO score development teams and ask them a hundred questions and say yes, no or maybe. My gift in this world is to connect the dots that are not necessarily connectable or commonly connected just like this thing. When I was editing chapter nine, I was like, “Hold it. Is that the back of the book?”
I said, “The lenders gave the power to the software and now the software measures behaviors. That means borrowers need to know how to behave in order to be in charge of their own approvals.” Who has access to the things you need to be able to connect those dots? That’s why I believe we’re the only ones because nobody has had those series of experiences. There are a couple of dark places even in the book for my life story where I had an opportunity that anybody rarely gets to experience that forced me to pay attention to the things that are important to me. This is the location, this is the job, this is how I love to positively affect the world. It’s a series of interesting events. Now here we are harvesting Funding Hackers out of all of the real estate investors, entrepreneurs and everything so that we’re not the only ones who know it. Everybody can have access to this and that’s what the book is all about.
It reminds me of a movie called The Matrix. You’re like Neo. If you think about it, you say you’re able to go back and see things. It’s like the last series in The Matrix where the guy is talking about what happened, how everything is changed over and how there are multitudes of different exits or different evolution to the credit. I’m totally seeing that. It’s like you’re seeing the code now.
What you’re saying is next month I’m going to wear my black trench coat, my big boots and my dark sunglasses. Here’s what’s interesting, when that came out in 1999, that changed my life. From a philosophical level, it is still to this date my single most favorite powerful movie. If somebody says, “Who’s your hero?” Neo is my hero. You bring up an amazing subject. If you’re more new school than old school, if you have not seen The Matrix and you want to see behind the curtain how things evolve over time and how we might be buying illusions that have been sold to us that aren’t necessarily true anymore, that’s what the whole book is about.
If you fill out an application online, there’s not a banker that looks at your application. You get that 30-second approval or denial because of your data. What if you knew what your data needed to say to get approved? This isn’t gaming or cheating. This is saying, “I have fifteen versions of my identity out there. They need to see one.” What if you knew how to take it all these from Merrill Chandler? What if you knew how to distill it down into one and the software trusted that they would be lending that money to you and no other fraudulent version of you? All those things. There are dozens and dozens of these. That’s what the book is all about. Having your hand something that’s easily referenced about how to shape your borrower behaviors so that you are in charge of your approvals, done.
I’m coming up with many different ideas for marketing for you now that we’ve had this episode. I’m not joking, it’s such a different animal. It’s the difference between The Terminator and the kid getting rid of Skynet and The Matrix. It’s exactly it because that’s what everybody believed, the machines will rule the world. In the credit world, the algorithm or the software rules. You have to know how to plug the play or hit the right buttons.
You get to see the code. If you know what the code is, you will get approval. It’s the problem that I have even in my boot camps. I’m writing this so that I can hold your hand every step of the way through each chapter and each section. My biggest hurdle in people’s understanding is they can’t hear the words, “The borrower is now in charge of their approvals.” They hear the language but it can’t penetrate to the belief system inside of them that says, “What did he just say? I don’t believe that for a second.” You know how I started when we did the previous Note CAMP. I was like, “Here’s the sentence that you can get credit without a stated income at two points over prime, without income verification, without financial or tax returns.” I’d say, “How many people think I’m full of crap?” 20%, 30%, 50% of the room raised their hand and then I walk them through simple little points, little dominoes that fall and they’re like, “How is this possible? How don’t we know this?”
First of all, automatic underwriting has been becoming more and more prevalent in the last few years. There were some, but it was not proven that the lenders would trust it that much. FICO has been instrumental in making it a worthy piece of software. I loved FICO’s efforts in predictive analytics. The thing is that people can’t comprehend it because in The Matrix, The Wizard of Oz, all the great mythical characters that we have like Prometheus to bring fire from the gods, you pick the metaphor, we don’t know it’s possible. My mission is to promote this to start changing people’s minds through you, Scott, you’re a superhero at doing this. You’re in charge of your behavior and the software measures your behaviors. That means if A equals B equals C, you’re in charge of your approvals. The thing is that we are in charge, that’s the bottom line. If you can’t hear it, read the book. If you can’t hear it, go to the boot camp. You’ve got to spend some time with me and my team. Brad is genius at this, Jessica is genius at this, but there are only a dozen of us.
Let’s talk about the book. People can go on and pre-order a copy of the book.
They can reserve a copy. When it publishes to Amazon, it’s $19.95. It’s free plus shipping if you order it from the website. It’s FundingHackers.com/book. You can reserve yourself a copy and we will let you know the second that it’s out and give you a link to pay for shipping. I would love for this to catch on. I don’t know if it will. I don’t know if it’s possible to create that much. I just see what other things have been out there. I don’t need it to be a bestseller. What I need is for hundreds of thousands or millions of people to go, “What did he say?” and start doing it differently. That’s where we get the magic from.
You’re the credit messiah. I see an image of you with long brown hair and white robe, but that’s the thing. You had it here. It’s only $19.95 on Amazon. You can go to FundingHackers.com/book and reserve your copy just for the shipping cost. He’s not looking to make money. He’s just looking to spread the credit gospel according to Merrill Chandler. He is a prophet walking on Earth, spreading the credit gospel and changing the myths of credit paganism.
What I am doing is changing the myth and pulling the rug out from under what you believe. I have no messianic pretensions, but I do want to pull the rug out from underneath you because until you hit your head, will you pay attention.
How many pre-sales or pre-orders of the book would you be excited about? Give me a number because I want to work for that.
You know what the critical mass is. 3% of any population without your own efforts will continue to cascade out through the market. 1,000 pre-sold copies in people’s hands say that we got 1,000 raving fans.
That’s what I want our audience to do right now. I want you to write down the link FundingHackers.com/book. Go on there, pay the shipping and handling and reserve your copy when it comes out live here to be able to grab a copy just for shipping costs. How many pages is the book, Merrill?
It’s a little less than 200.
Less than 200 pages, sixteen chapters, I guarantee it’s going to be an interesting read. Merrill, you’ve had some ups and downs and interesting moments along the way too.
Can I share a philosophy that translates into this perfectly? Any of you science men and women out there know the Bernoulli’s Principle. It is about fluid dynamics, which simply means when you put your thumb on a garden hose, it doesn’t bubble out. It fans out and squirts out. More pressure creates greater force. In fluid dynamics, in our intellectual awareness, in our spiritual awareness, wherever we’re growing in life, if it comes down and gets compacted, then that energy flows more and fast with greater force.
I’ve had times in my life, and you’ll learn all about it in the book, where my life had a crazy opportunity to compact my life into a very narrow dynamic where all of this life force, my intelligence, my emotional force had to go somewhere. What was born was what we now call fundability optimization. Find out all the details, but that Bernoulli’s principle, that’s why I’m not afraid of crunches. That’s why I’m not afraid of pressure. Because when we start feeling pressure then all of our intelligence, all of our capability, all of our talents ends up having more force in the world. It has more power and influence. That’s why we respond to deadlines. Our genius comes out when we’re crushing it.
You and I’ve had some big conversations on some things over the last couple of years. We’ve gotten to know each other and we enjoy each other’s company. A lot of great ideas come from our most troubling times. That squeeze that gets in our lives by people around us, I totally understand it. Sometimes it allows words to cut through the noise in the side that we can be focused on. It’s almost like having to put the blinders on a horse.
It’s like a magnification glass on the power of the sun. It’s compacting the same energy to create more influence. For the audience, take that pressure and let it cut stone, let it cut metal of your lives. I had that opportunity as well in my life and this entire thing evolved. This is what caused this opportunity to connect all these dots and now bring it to the borrowers and say, “You got the power.”
Brad Burnett was one of the speakers on Note CAMP Commercial. He did a tremendous job. It’s a little different energy, but the same energy. He was ranked high as one of the top four speakers for the entire event. He was the third favorite speaker out of everybody that spoke there. It gives you a bit of an idea.
That’s awesome. I’m number eleven or twelve. He’s going to start doing all those now. I do know that.
You’ve done well on the Note CAMP. It was a little different flavor this time around, which is always good to shake it a little bit because there are little nuggets that he’d mentioned. It radiated a little bit different. It’s sometimes just hearing the same information from a different person.
He and I look at the middle from completely opposite ends. That’s why he’s an amazing friend and business partner is because the truth is never each of our experience. It’s somewhere in the middle between us. He’s a genius at this and I wouldn’t be anywhere near without him, without Jessica. Jessica is five years, he’s been ten years and I’ve been doing it for 25. Without these different personalities and these different perspectives, I could be just a one-man show over there beating a cymbal. I don’t want to be that. I want to be able to speak to everyone. The whole reason why we’re even launching all this stuff is because of Brad, my Chief Marketing Officer as well. He is in charge of making sure that I do this right.
I’m just a show pony. I connect dots and then I go out and raise the roof and get the crowds excited. He’s the one who captures all the energy and gets it translated into where people can learn, grow and manifest intelligent decisions for themselves. I want to do the book and send it out to a bunch of media outlets who are like, “Merrill. The website is going to have a place so people can reserve their own copy of it.” I’m going, “Great, how much are you charging?” “It’s going to be free.” I’m like, “What?” “They’re going to give us their email so we can send them the information and then we’re going to TLC them. We’re getting them free information.” I’m like, “Awesome. What?” I don’t know that stuff. I know fundability and optimization. I know how to deliver and how to get you where you need to go. He translates that where people can sit on their computers, make those decisions and create that stuff as they come to the awareness of it.
George Antone has written several books out there and he’s best known for The Banker’s Code early on. George and I sat down a couple of years ago and visited an event. He mentioned how magic seems to happen when 10,000 books are in people’s hands, whether it’s eBooks or physical books. You don’t write a book these days to be a bestseller and make a ton of money as a bestseller because it just doesn’t happen that way. What you use though is the fact that they use a book there to get the word out more of what you’re doing. You’ve already built credibility in this industry with everybody come in contact with because of your knowledge, your experience and the way that you’re helping investors out there in a variety of different fashion.
It’s not just in the note business, but fix and flippers, landlords and wholesalers by helping build those lines of credit to me. You were in Houston with Jason and Robert out there a couple of months ago. We did the Funding Hackers roadshow. You travel across the Lone Star State for the most part. That’s the biggest thing I want people to realize. To give away a brand new 200-page book, we’re not talking a twelve-page eBook. We’re talking lots of serious contents in there, plus the fact is that you do your funding hackers boot camp for $97. It’s cheap. It’s an investment.
I’m giving it away so that we can start influencing. If there’s a value trade, I would rather have $1 from a million people than $1 million from one person. I’d rather influence the million people if dollars are all the same. Brad’s the one who’s got my boots on the ground to be able to get it out there and get people interested in either the boot camp, which is $97. It changes everything. You will not look at a credit card application ever again without seeing the code in the matrix.
I think you and I both agree that we live in such a highly financially uneducated society these days. Nobody’s teaching kids how to balance checkbooks. Nobody’s talking about the stock market. It’s about doing the least to get them through with a diploma for the most part, which is sad and unfortunate. They’re left to figure it out either at community college or trials and errors of balancing some bad checks in college. God knows we all do that. We’re signing up for the Discover card or doing what they used to do with targeting college kids with their credit cards.
They’re not even valuable cards.
The thing that I’m trying to get at is this is what you’re doing and I say this because I’ve sat in your class. I’ve sent an email out to Brad and Jessica on a couple of things that were client stuff. We are such big advocates of this. I don’t get kickbacks. I’m not looking for kickbacks on it. You and I will agree to that. I don’t want this. I want to deliver content that’s valuable to our clients or our note nation family out there. I’ll put this in the forefront of things that you have to attend even before getting your entity and before signing up your LLC. You need to know some of the things because there are big things like the entities that you don’t want to have in your name, those big mistakes that people made. I made plenty of them early on. The beautiful thing is you can go back and fix it and correct them.
That was one of the most eye-opening moments. That’s one of the things I heard from testimonials after testimonials of students when I asked them, “What did you think about the Funding Hackers boot camp?” when I reached out to people. They were like, “It was the best thing that I’ve done not only for my business but also for my personal credit stuff as well in my lifetime. That’s to be commended to Merrill and your whole staff there. I mean that for our audience out there. The $97 that you pay to sign up for the Funding Hackers boot camp is well worth it. You get the replays. It’s delivered online so you can learn from the comfort of your own home, office, couch or your smartphone. What I love too is that you’ve allowed me into your private Facebook group and I’ve been able to log in and watch sessions after I’ve attended.
That’s the goal level, to be able to have access. I loved it when we were in Vegas and going through that and Scott Carson popped up and we’re like, “Scott, what’s up? Because it’s interactive. It’s live. This isn’t a canned thing that you don’t participate. I never do anything recorded. This is all live. You get to ask me questions. Even if you’re at home, nobody leaves that presentation without having every one of your questions fully answered to the degree that I can at the front of the room because some take a consultation or whatever to at least be able to do a deeper dive. The vast majority of questions are answered straight up.
Merrill, is there anything else you want to leave people with?
Scott, you have so much influence over people that are exactly who we want to communicate to. You’ve connected us with everybody that makes us successful. Props to you for who you are and how you do it out there. You’re the wizard. If I’m Neo, you’re Gandalf.
Merrill, thank you so much. I’m so proud of the book coming out. Once again, go to FundingHackers.com/book to reserve your free copy there, just pay the shipping and handling and everything will be sent out to you.
God speed and God bless, Scott. Thank you for everything.
Go take action, go do something and we’ll see you at the top.
- Are You F’able or Just F’ed?
- Note CAMP Commercial
- The Banker’s Code
About Merrill Chandler
Merrill Chandler, CEO and Chief Strategist at CreditSense.com, has been an influential player in the credit restoration industry for over 21 years, and has co-founded numerous successful credit restoration firms around the country, including Lexington Law. Unsatisfied with the results of credit repair alone, Merrill has used his extensive knowledge of credit reporting and credit profiling to single-handedly invent and dominate the credit profile optimization marketplace.
Since 1997, Merrill and his staff of advisors have assisted real estate investors, business owners, entrepreneurs, and savvy consumers nation-wide to create FUNDABLE Tier 1, and even 800+ credit profiles. Today, CreditSense’s credit profile optimization process has no equal, especially for clients who want to leverage their financial reputations towards wealth and prosperity.
Through superior client relations, Merrill and his team have maintained an A+ Better Business Bureau rating for over 21 years.
Merrill is a compelling and knowledgeable keynote speaker and has addressed real estate investment conferences and businesses forums around the country where he has delivered his popular credit-empowerment forum, “Insider Secrets to an 800+ Credit Score.” Adventurous and passionate, he is an extreme sports enthusiast and enjoys traveling all over the world.