5 Ways To Improve Your Credit Score
A credit score, also known as a credit rating, is a number that reflects the likelihood of you paying credit back. The exact number of your credit score can differ between lenders or even between different products from the same lender, depending on the criteria used in assessing you as a potential customer.
There are three main credit scoring agencies in the UK: Equifax, Experian and TransUnion (formerly Callcredit). Each charge to use their services, though it is possible to access for free via their partner sites; ClearScore, MSEs Credit Club and Noddle.
How you can improve your credit rating and credit score
If after checking your credit score you find that you have a low credit rating, there are a number things you can do to improve your score.
Pay your bills on time - Late or defaulted repayments can really dent your credit score. Though, it’s an easy one to fix.
Check for mistakes - Even the smallest of mistakes can major impact on your credit score.
Check for fraud - If something on your credit report is incorrect or doesn’t apply to you, i.e. if someone applied for credit in your name without your knowledge, contact the credit reference agency immediately to have your file updated.
Register on the electoral roll - If your name’s not on there, you’ll find it much harder to get credit.
Consider a credit-building card - If you have a poor credit history, you might want to consider a credit-builder credit card.
How long will it take to improve my credit score?
Your credit score is built up slowly over time as you increase the number of on-time payments you make. Therefore, the longer you leave a bill unpaid, the greater impact it could have on your credit score.
Most negative marks will remain on your file for at least six years. After that time, everything is deleted from your file, including missed payments, defaults, bankruptcy and CCJs.
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