Credit scores can be the bane of your life. If you’ve paid a bill late, or if you miss a mortgage payment, regardless of whether you have an arrangement with your creditor, this can damage your credit score and therefore limit your access to loans.
Alternative sources of finance
If you have a low credit score and find that banks or other lenders don’t want to advance you any money then a secured loan against your car or even bike or caravan is a useful alternative. Companies, including CCP will offer you a loan against the value of your vehicle. Your credit score doesn’t matter as if you do default on the loan, the company will retain your car logbook, and consequently ownership of your car.
Always check your credit score
It’s very easy to check your credit score and the website The Money Advice Service suggests that you should do so in order to confirm that all the details on your report are correct. The three main credit reference agencies in the UK are Experian, Equifax and Noddle and it is a good idea to check all three to ensure that they have the correct information.
Do remember that every time you apply for credit this will affect your credit score. Some searches made by prospective lenders will ask for an in depth credit report, whereas employers will only have access to information that’s on the public record. This information will include County Court Judgements (CCJs) and bankruptcy. Even if your financial situation has improved, CCJs and bankruptcy orders will remain on file for six years.
Your partner affects your credit score
You may have a wonderful record of making debt repayments on time and meeting all of your other financial commitments but if your partner’s financial history is at all blemished this will affect your credit rating. You need to clarify that you don’t have joint accounts or any loans in both of your names in order to repair your score.
The credit reference agency has a duty to rectify any mistakes. You can also explain to the agencies why you may have had a period of indebtedness in the past and this will be added to your credit report in the form of a ‘notice of correction.’
Do not keep on applying for credit
Even though the credit score will reflect your ability to obtain credit as well as your repayment record, according to This is Money too many credit applications in a short space of time can make borrowers seem like they are desperate for credit. Try and spread out the amount of times that you make a credit application in order to minimise the effect on your credit score.
Keep your address up to date
It’s also an excellent idea to make sure that you’re on your local electoral role and that your address is correct. Important though this information is, it’s vital that you try never to miss a bill payment, this can plummet your credit score from ‘excellent’ to ‘poor.’ With landlords, mobile phone providers and credit card companies all seeking access to your credit score this method of assessing your credit worthiness is more important than ever.