Credit Report and Personal Information

We all plan to have an excellent credit report as we all understand the importance to have a high credit scoring report. Your positive credit scores is possibly the best second way to gain financial success, obviously, your own business acumen comes at first.

We do get confused by people talking about their credit reports. It is sometimes difficult to manage your debts and dealing with new credit applications at the same time.
Let us understand how you can get your credit report, what is there on your report, and can it be improved. Our objective is that you feel confident about dealing with your debts and enhance your financial capabilities.

Credit Reference Agencies Manage Your Credit Report

Everyone should take time to manage and boost their credit score. It’s no longer just about whether you can get mortgages, credit cards, and loans, it can also affect mobile phone contracts, monthly car insurance, bank accounts, renting a home, and other things.
Your credit report is a summary of your financial history provided by a credit reference agency (CRA). These organizations keep financial information about nearly every adult in the UK.
These agencies share information about people’s credit history to lenders such as banks, credit card companies, or mortgage providers, to help them decide whether they should lend money to you.

Credit Reference Agencies in the UK

There are three main agencies in the UK you can request your credit report from. In no particular order these are:

EXPERIAN

Free credit score access is available on their website full report free via the MSE Credit Club

EQUIFAX

Free access is available via ClearScore

TRANS UNION

Free access is available via CreditKarma

You’re also entitled to a statutory copy of your basic credit report from each agency, it costs £2 where it is not provided free of charge. But I think the free credit report option is better now.

I recommend you to get your credit report from all three credit reference agencies as they may vary from each other but it will help you to find out if there are any issues that need correction or updating.

Important & Frequently Asked Questions on Credit Report

Your credit report contains a range of personal information, including:

  • Your full name, current address, and date of birth
  • Any other names you may have had previously (i.e. before you got married)
  • Previous address or all list of previous address
  • Financial links with someone i.e. your wife /partner or any joint account you held previously
  • Electoral roll details

It also contains details of any debts you have such as:

  • Personal loans, including payday loans
  • Overdrafts
  • With catalogue companies
  • Credit and store cards
  • Utility suppliers
  • Mortgages and secured loans including bridging loans /second charge
  • HP agreement

It also contains information supplied by the Insolvency Service and Registry Trust, showing if you’re subject to any of the following debt solutions:

England, Wales, or Northern Ireland:

Scotland:

  • Trust deed

In all countries, any bankruptcy restriction orders or undertakings will also be shown.

It also shows court judgments where a lender or other organization has taken you to court, including:

  • County Court and High Court judgments (CCJs) in England and Wales
  • Decrees (Scotland)
  • Money judgments (Northern Ireland)
  • Magistrates – financial penalties (England and Wales only), but only if the court has ordered this because payments have not been made

When you apply for credit, the process usually involves you giving your consent/permission to the credit provider to check your credit report.

The term “credit provider” doesn’t only include banks and credit card companies but also mail-order companies and, for example, providers of mobile telephone services if you have a phone contract, but not if you’re on a pay-as-you-go deal.

Employers and landlords can also check your credit report, although they’ll usually only see public record information such as:

  • electoral register information.
  • insolvency records.
  • County Court Judgements (or Decrees in Scotland).

Each of the debts included in your credit report will show some or all of the following information:

  • Whether the account is still active (open), or closed
  • “Defaults” on your accounts
  • Payment history, showing whether payments are up to date or in arrears (in other words, you’re behind on your payments)
  • Current balances owed or the credit limit
  • Whether the debt has been passed to debt collection agencies
  • Whether reduced payments are being made as part of a DMP or similar arrangement
  • Whether you were ever registered as “gone away”
  • Details of accounts in “dispute”
  • Whether you’ve withdrawn cash on a credit card

For closed accounts, whether the debt is:

  • Settled – the debt was paid in full and never defaulted
  • Partially settled – the lender accepted a reduced amount to settle the debt
  • Satisfied – the account was paid in full but previously defaulted
  • Partially satisfied – the lender accepted a reduced amount to settle the debt, but the account previously defaulted

As a rule, information on your credit file is removed after six years, however, there are a few exceptions to be aware of.

  • Bankruptcy restriction orders or undertakings appear for their duration (up to 15 years), In some cases there are indefinite bankruptcy which may remain throughout your report period
  • Individual voluntary arrangements (IVAs) are removed six years from the date of approval, or once they’ve been formally completed (this can take longer than six years)
  • Magistrates fines in England and Wales appear up to five years

If you review your credit report and find that there are any issues or incorrect entries, you can contact the credit reference agency or the lender involved to have incorrect information corrected or removed. This is important because mistakes in your report could prevent you from being able to obtain credit.

You may be able to remove:

  • Debts took out in your name that is fraudulent (i.e. not yours)
  • Financial associations such as out of date or incorrect financial connections

If you think that you may have been the victim of fraud, contact “Action Fraud” and inform the CRA and the lender.

To remove a financial connection you’ll need to fill out a “notice of correction” available from your CRA.

Notice of Correction – Putting things right

You can also ask the credit reference agencies to add a notice to your credit report of up to 200 words long which potential lenders will see. This notice can explain the cause of your debt, or explain to a lender why the information on your credit file may be misleading.

Usually, credit decisions are made automatically but adding a note means that your credit decision will be made by a person instead.

Need help in assessing & improving credit score in the report? Please call us now at 0203 318 0990, get free advice & a free appointment to discuss your case for personalized solutions.

In order to maintain a healthy credit scoring report, one should know about all possible factors that can affect their chances of borrowing money. CIFAS Marker is one such thing that should concern you.

Click on the link to know more about CIFAS Marker & its effect on your Credit Report