What can I do to improve my credit score?

What can I do to improve my credit score?

A good credit history helps to get lenders to say yes to your application. That’s why it’s useful to know what things can affect your credit rating – and how you can improve it.

So whether you’ve recently been turned down for credit or just want to apply in the future – take a look at some of the ways you could help improve your credit score. 

Watch how Jo is working towards a better credit score for her next adventure
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If you need help in improving your credit rating, you should aim to give yourself a history of good financial management. You can prove this by showing how you’re always on time with payments – from any loans you may have, to utility bills or an existing credit card.

Making your payments on time each month can be a big help in building a better credit history – it shows that you can manage credit responsibly.

Getting turned down for credit affects your credit rating – making it harder for you to get credit in the future.

Using our eligibility checker won’t show on your credit record and you’ll be able to apply knowing how likely you are to be accepted. There’s no harm to your credit rating so it won’t affect your ability to get credit at a later date.

Keep a healthy bank balance and don’t use the overdraft on your account too often – this will show potential lenders you’re in control of your finances.

When deciding whether or not to lend money to you, lenders get information from Credit Reference Agencies. The two largest in the UK are Experian and Equifax.

You can pay for a report from a Credit Reference Agency, then carefully check its accuracy. If you spot mistakes, get in touch with them. Regularly checking your credit report is also a good way to monitor if you’ve been a victim of identity fraud.

Just remember, using a reference agency to see your score only gives a general idea of how credit worthy you are – each lender you apply to will have their own criteria.

Being registered on the Electoral Roll shows lenders you are more settled, and it helps with their identity verification checks.

Take care to be consistent in your applications. For example, make sure you write your name exactly the same every time, and if you have more than one mobile number, always use the same one for your application. A landline number can also show that you have a stable lifestyle and help improve your credit score.

Other people may appear on your credit report if they’re registered to vote at your address, or if you share a mortgage or joint loan with them. Lenders may use this information to help them decide whether they give you credit or not. If you’re no longer connected, you may be able to ask for them to be removed from your credit report.

You should always pay off a CCJ as soon as you can.  If you can show that you’ve paid off your debts – and they show as settled on your credit report – you’re less likely to be unsuccessful in your future applications.