Credit Scores - what you need to know

Credit References

How UK lenders decide who to lend to?
Before giving credit, lenders such as banks, loan companies and shops check whether you are an acceptable risk. To help them decide this they obtain information from credit reference agencies. Whilst it is annoying when the computer says no and you are refused credit it is a system that allows lenders to process new loans fast.

There is no such thing as a "blacklist" and credit reference agencies do not give an opinion about whether or not you should be given credit. The lender decides this once they have reviewed the information provided about you and by you on any application.

Lenders do not have to tell you exactly why they turned you down but should give an indication of the reason such as - your credit record. If you think this decision is wrong or unjustified you should ask the lender about how to get the decision reviewed. This could be by providing additional information such as illustrating that the debts shown as unpaid have now been paid.

You are able to insert a statement of up to 200 words onto your credit file explaining the situation and about your current and/or previous circumstances. This entry will be included with your file in the future and will be seen by lenders searching your file in relation to applications for credit. Please note this might be extended in 2016.

How to obtain a copy of your own credit file
It is obviously of the utmost importance that the information held about you is correct, the easiest way to order your file is online (Equifax and Experian) or by telephone (Experian), as long as you have either a credit card or debit card in your own name.

Alternatively you can write enclosing a cheque for £2, giving your full name, date of birth, current address and any addresses you have had in the last six years. There are three main credit reference agencies, each of which may hold different information about you. You may find it useful to obtain a copy of your file from each agency.

Callcredit PLC
Consumer Services Team
PO Box 491
Helpline: 0870 060 1414
Equifax PLC
Credit File Advice Centre
PO Box 1140
Tel: 08705 143700

Experian Ltd
Consumer Help Service
PO Box 8000
Tel: 0870 241 6212
If you are unsure which step to take to solve your debt problems, ask the opinion of our professional debt advisers.

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