Credit reports: All you need to know - Which?
Your credit report and credit score, free for life with no catches or hidden charges. Callcredit is the fastest growing credit reference agency in the UK and our. Get full access to your credit score and report. Get my Free Score & Report Access your full credit report to make sure that the details affecting your score are up to date. Whatever your plans, getting your free credit score is the first step towards . Credit is available, subject to status, only to UK residents aged 18 or over. Lenders rely on data provided by the UK's three credit reference agencies credit accounts, the date they were opened, the credit limit or loan amount, when you apply for a loan or buy something with interest free credit.
Fixing any inaccuracies is critical, as they could stand in the way of your credit application being approved. A few simple steps you can take are: Ensure your address held by your credit providers is up to date. Making sure your details are correct.
Keeping on top of your credit rating can also help protect you from identity fraud and theft. How do I check my credit rating? In the UK there are three main credit reference agencies used by credit providers. You should check your credit score with all three as lenders rely on these agencies to supply them with accurate insights into your credit history.
This information helps them decide whether or not to approve your application for credit. Signing up to this credit reference agency also allows you to access your credit report and score online. That means lenders only need give 51pc of accepted customers the advertised rate — the rest can pay more. So even if they advertise a 6 per cent representative APR, your credit score could mean you're offered 40 per cent.
The system is anti—shopping around Too many applications, especially in a short space of time, can have a negative effect on your future score. This is a catch—22 as if you get rejected, or the rate you are offered is poor, you'll want to keep applying to see if you can get a better deal, but at the same time your chances will start diminishing.
It's something I've railed against for years, including in evidence given to House of Commons select committees, but politicians have done little.
So eventually I tried to do something myself… 6. Find your odds of acceptance in advance The reason applications mark your file is that many lenders unnecessarily use "hard searches", which other lenders can see.
They could use soft searches, which you can see on your file but other lenders can't — so there's no impact on future credit—worthiness.
How to check your credit score | MBNA
Using this, we built a free Eligibility Checker — see moneysavingexpert. It uses a soft search to map your score against lenders' criteria, and shows your percentage chance of getting different products, so you can hone in on the right card, minimising applications.
Inconsistent applications can cause rejection Lenders use two anti—fraud agencies to weed out problems. This more subjective system tries to spot fraudulent applications.
For example, inconsistences between application forms from different institutions can hurt. So if you've got more than one mobile number or job title, use the same one each time. Check all your credit files annually or before any major application The three credit reference agencies, Equifax, Experian and Callcredit, have files containing lots of data on each of us.
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Errors on these can kibosh applications. Check all three regularly, line by line. Even something innocuous like an old, but technically still live, mobile phone contract which you forgot to update to your new address could in some circumstances stop you getting a mortgage. Callcredit has a free service noddle. More on this, including how to get paid to do it, is at mse. Take "pay to see your credit score" sites with a giant pinch of salt Credit reference agencies used to make their cash by selling your info to lenders, now they flog it back to us, too.
While credit files are crucial, the credit scores they sell have two flaws. Each lender scores you differently — so a universal score is a strange concept. And the score only looks at the info on your credit file. What are lenders looking for? As well as asking you for details of your income, employment status and assets, lenders use information from credit reference agencies to assess how well you have handled credit in the past, and therefore how much of a risk they are taking by lending money to you.
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You may also struggle to borrow money if you have never taken out credit before, or if you already have what the lender believes to be too many loans or credit cards. There is no "blacklist" of people who will not be given credit - each lender analyses the information according to its own rules, so you may be turned down by one company but accepted by another. However, beware of making multiple applications, because many lenders take a negative view of a large number of credit searches in a short period.
What can you do if you are refused credit?
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No lender has to provide credit to you. It can turn you down altogether, offer to lend less than you requested, or charge a higher rate of interest.New Dating Criteria: All About the Credit Score
However, you can ask it to reconsider if it made its decision just using a computerised credit scoring system or if you believe you have further relevant information. The lender does not have to provide a detailed explanation of its actions, but it must tell you the name of the credit reference agency which supplied information about you.
Checking your file Even if you have not been turned down for credit, it is a good idea to check your file regularly - perhaps once a year - to ensure the information held is correct. Lenders use all three agencies so you need to contact each of them. You need to provide your full name, date of birth, current address and former addresses for the previous six years.
The statutory report contains your basic credit file and should be posted to you within seven working days although agencies can ask for further proof of your identity before supplying the information. Each agency will provide more detailed information - including in some cases instant, continuing and online access to your file - for a higher fee.