Poor credit is something that many of us suffer with.
Equifax, one of the UK’s credit reference agencies, score out of 700. The average score in the country is 380. That means that most of us just about fall into the fair grouping of 380-419. A significant portion of us are well under where we should be.
Lenders often aren’t happy with fair. They want to lend knowing that their money is safe and that they will be able to get it back. Fair, just isn’t good enough in most cases.
If your credit is poor, or just not as high as you would like it, there is plenty that you can do to improve things quickly. Let’s take a look.
Check Your Report
The first thing that you need to do when it comes to building your credit score is to find out what it is and why.
Most credit reference agencies now offer free checks and reports. So, sign up and take a look at yours.
Look at any searches and credit checks recorded on your account, as well as your score and any factors working against you. Being informed is the first step to making changes. Take a look at https://www.equifax.com/personal/.
Credit applications affect your score. The more applications you make in a short period, the more significant the effect.
After a year, these checks become less relevant. But if you’ve made more than one application for credit within a year, it can knock hundreds of points off your score, whether you were accepted or not.
So, it’s important that your report is right. Check what’s on there. If you don’t think it’s right, get in touch with the credit agency listed on your report and get the search removed.
Get the Right Credit
If you need credit, or just need a credit card to boost your score (no credit is almost as bad as poor credit), then make sure you make the right application.
Don’t apply for something you might not get. This will lead to further applications going forward.
If you are getting a credit card to boost your poor score, it’s essential that you use it wisely. Only use it to make purchases that you can afford and pay the maximum off with every bill.
Don’t let yourself get into long-term debt and never spend more than 50% of your available credit.
Register to Vote
It’s not just your finances that show how stable and secure you are. There are other things that you can do.
Registering to vote is the easiest. Make sure you are on the electoral roll at your current address and change it if you move to a new house.
Living in the same home for at least three years can help too.
Check Your Connections
If you’ve ever been financially tied to someone else, through a shared bank account, credit card or mortgage, their credit report could still affect your own.
Check your report to make sure all ties have been cut.
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