Credit Reports are your financial identity
Credit reports in the UK are maintained and developed by the three key credit agencies, which are Experian (Credit Expert), Equifax and Call Credit. Reports contain a detailed insight into your credit/payment history, sometimes a credit report, is also described as your credit file. The content of your credit report, will determine the credit rating or credit score the credit agency gives you. You will have a credit report, as long as you are 18, and have some credit in the uk.
Financial lenders use Credit Reports
Credit Reports, are important and ultimately worth paying for as lenders, use credit reports, from one of the main UK credit agencies, described above, to make a decision on whether to lend to you or not. They use your credit report along with details on your application such as your salary to work how much of a risk you are and if you will are more likely to not pay back the credit. They will also use information in your credit report to determine an interest rate on the credit, they offer you.
How to get a Credit Report
Simply sign up with Experian, Equifax and Callcredit to gain access, to your free credit report.
Why would you pay for access?
- When applying for credit - alot of people check their credit report when they get rejected for a financial application, but they should check it before.
- When switching jobs or looking to move home - in both cases a credit check (reviewing your credit report) with your permission, can be part of the process, particularly when looking to rent or buy a home.
- Victim of Identity fraud - sometimes people get a letter or a call about a credit product they did not apply for, your credit file will reveal if applications have been made in your name.
What kind of information is included in your Credit Report?
Credit Account Information:
This part of the credit report includes details of your credit arrangements with the relevant financial lenders, for example mobile phone accounts, current accounts, mortgages and credit cards and now utilities. It also shows for each account the balance of any outstanding credit, and any late payments.
Electoral Roll Information:
This shows the dates that your name was registered on the electoral roll, and the address associated with your name, when you registered.
This section shows the details of anyone you are financially connected to. These are created when you participate in joint applications, such as for a joint current account or a mortgage.. This is common with spouses for example.
Public Record Information:
This section of your credit report contains information on any IVA's (individual voluntary arrangements), county court judgements (CCJ's) and bankruptcies.
Prior Searches on your Credit File:
This shows the organisations that have viewed some or all of the information in your credit report, within the past 12 months. Most of the searches will be in relation to finance applications you have made, and should have been performed with your consent.