4 Tricks to Improve Your Credit Score

4 Tricks to Improve Your Credit Score

Your credit score is one of the most vital pieces of information that companies can hold about you.  It is used to determine all manner of things – from whether you can get a mobile phone contract to buying a house. Which means that having the best score that you possibly can is important.  Thankfully there are ways and means to improve your credit score to ensure that you are able to get the credit that you are applying for, whether it is a loan or a credit card.

Tricks to Improve Your Credit Score

The first thing you need to do, before using any tricks, is get a copy of your credit report (you can usually get this free).  From your credit report you will find out a lot of information that you can use to improve your credit score.

The Tricks

  • Fix Mistakes.  The credit report is partly done by people – and people make mistakes; but also partly automated but, guess what, computers make mistakes too.  It could be that it says that you have outstanding debt when you don’t, or that you have a different address. This can be a particular problem if you have just moved and aren’t yet registered to vote at your new address.  Even small things like spelling your surname slightly wrong can stop your credit application.

 

  • Clear your Debts.   Especially your outstanding rather than ongoing debts.  Any debts that are overdue will count against you when you apply for credit. Make it your mission to never miss a payment.

 

  • Make Payments.  Make sure that you have some credit out (credit cards, mobile phone etc) and that you pay the minimum (at least, ideally more) every month.  The more you do this on a regular basis the more credit companies will trust you. set up direct debits or standing orders with your bank if you have a tendency to forget when payments are due.

 

  • Use security.  If you are still having trouble getting credit it might be worth offering something as security.  For small borrowings this could be your car, or a computer… for larger ones your home may be the only thing that would be accepted but we would strongly advice seeking proper financial advice before doing this – or better still, just don’t do it.

For many people simply one or two of these tricks could solve their credit problems… have you given them a go yet?


3 Comments

  1. About 17 years ago I got myself into a real pickle with loans, credit card, finance and overdrafts.

    I thought I was being clever by being able to get things that others had to save for. I took all these with the best intentions of being able to pay them, which I did so for a while until problems started.

    Id just like to add that I have been completely debt free for around 15 years or so – I know it wasnt the best thing to do but because of the way I was feeling, I buried my head in the sand and ignored letters,

    But I learnt a valuable lesson

  2. Firstly, my credit rating is poor, due to a default I gained some 3 years ago.

    Since then, I have maintained an excellent repayment history on all my Credit (Credit Card, Car Finance, Very etc), however I am still marked down by ALL the Credit Agencies and my score hasn’t improved at all, even though I make regular repayments on the defaulted account, gradually reducing the balance.

    OK, I understand that a 3 year old default continues to skew my credit score but recently paid to upgrade of ‘Credit Expert’ (Experian) account to take a detailed look at what was happening.

    To my horror, my Experian Score is now 193 (out of 999), being marked down further due to a ‘new’ finance agreement I recently took on a car, even though I’m making payments!

    How the hell do they work this out? For the last three years (since my default), I’ve open and closed numerous new credit facilities, kept all my existing ones in good health, whilst reducing the balance on my defaulted account. Surely my score should have gone up?

    I know I’m not alone and many of us are being severely penalised from an APR perspective, due to poor credit scores. We can no longer get access to competitive mortgage lenders, attractive main dealer finance, 0% credit cards etc. Surely, this is counter productive?

    I get why recent CCJ’s, Bankruptcy or Fraud should preclude people from finance but many of us have worked tirelessly to rectify a prior mistake, which often happened a number of years ago, in difficult and/or mitigating circumstances.

    I’d really love for business not computer experts to take a look at the algorithms behind these scores and challenge their very existence!

  3. I had an account with RBS and asked them for help last year when I realised I was starting to struggle. They refused to help so I went to citizens advice who recommended a Trust Deed. I got in touch via the main website and was shortly contacted by some very nice people who reassured me that all would be ok.

    We sat and sifted through all my income and outgoings to determine a best course of action. Since RBS was one of my creditors to be affected, I was advised to change bank account, so I opened a NatWest Platinum account. There is a charge for having the account, but it paid for itself because the account includes mobile phone insurance (worth £12 per month), Green Flag breakdown cover (saving me £75 per year RAC), Central Heating cover (saving me £28 per month) and Home appliance cover (saving me another £25 per month) so in all, I was pretty happy. With all these savings, I was able to offer more to my creditors and the Trust Deed was accepted by all parties involved without any changes having to be made, so it all went through rather quicker than I had expected which was really good. Finally, I thought my problems would be behind me.

    As if by very bad coincidence, my fridge freezer has just packed up last week, and because of the fixed amounts agreed for me to live on for food, petrol, etc I am living on a very limited amount of funds and I can’t afford to replace the fridge freezer, and since they reduced my account I cannot use the bank account cover to fix it and because I had the account, I had cancelled the original appliance insurance, so now I’m left right back where I started. If I replace the fridge freezer, I will have to go without food or petrol to get to work, either that or I miss a payment to my trust deed and I am scared to even consider that one.

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