Have you heard of a ‘credit score’? It’s more important than you might think. Scores can have a massive impact on your life — they could even affect your ability to afford a new holiday, get a new car or buy a house.
In this blog, we’ll teach you all about what a credit score is, how it affects you and how to check your credit score using Yonda.
So what is a credit score?
It’s a number between 0 and 1,000 that tells lenders and other providers how reliable you are as a borrower.
Your credit score is the value of how likely you are to pay back the money you borrow. Lenders want to make sure you’re not simply going to vanish with their thousands (or tens of thousands) — so they use your credit score to see how risky you are.
What is used to figure my score out?
Your credit score is based on many different things, including your history of borrowing and paying any money you owe back.
That includes nearly any form of credit, such as:
- Personal loans
- Vehicle loans
- Hire purchases
- Credit cards
- Store cards
- Utility bills
- Phone bills
- And more
Who looks at my score?
Any time you apply for a loan, your potential lender will carry out a credit check on you. They want to make sure you’re going to pay their money back on time and in full after all.
That’s why a poor score could see you getting turned down for that new credit card, personal loan, or even your mortgage. The lender might charge you higher interest rates to ensure you’re worth the risk if they say yes.
So the same loan could cost you way more in the long run if your credit score is low.
The good news.
Your credit score doesn’t just cover lousy borrowing behaviour — it also considers good financial management, like payments you’ve made on time.
A good credit score is about providing a complete picture of your finances. If you’re careful with your money, you can improve that score. Eventually, those missed payments will begin to disappear from your record, replaced by your positive repayments.
This is also why older people tend to have higher credit scores — they’ve had more time to build up a solid history of paying their bills back on time.
So what do I need to do to boost my score?
There are lots of tricks to getting your credit score into shape:
Sort those bills.
First things first — make sure you’re paying back those bills on time. Don’t forget that it’s not just loans that affect your credit score; your utility and phone bills count too.
Keep an eye on your deadlines.
Have you fallen behind on meeting those repayments? Aim to pay regularly to build up a better financial portfolio. Over time these new, improved patterns and repayments will begin to replace your old ones.
Talk to your credit lender or provider.
If you’re struggling to meet your bills, it’s worth taking the time to have a chat with your lender about sorting out a new repayment plan.
Slow down on credit applications.
Don’t take out too many credit applications too often. As a rule of thumb, it’s good to make sure you’re only taking out loans for things you need. Otherwise, it’s more intelligent — and often cheaper — to keep saving.
Check out that credit score.
Have a look at your credit report. If you see any errors on it, like defaults that didn’t happen, applications for credit you didn’t make, or credit checks you didn’t authorise, make sure you raise them with the credit reporting company.
Your credit score has a massive impact on your life. Everything big you want to do is based on it, and it takes into account every little financial transaction you make, like paying phone bills and personal loans.
Make sure you meet the terms of your repayments and contact your lender if they can’t give you a better credit score overall.