Before you apply to borrow money it’s always a good idea to make sure your credit rating is in good order to avoid rejection.

There are several ways of maintaining a good credit score and here are 10 ways to improve your rating:

Pay your bills on-time

This may seem obvious but it’s extremely important. Demonstrating to potential lenders that you can be trusted to repay any amount you’ve borrowed is the most effective way to show them that you are worthy of borrowing.

And, to make sure you don’t forget it’s always a good idea to set up direct debits each month so you can rest assured that your bills will be paid on time.

Keep your Credit Utilisation Low

Lenders like to see your account active but that does not mean applying for every credit card you are offered. Your credit utilisation is a percentage you use of your credit limit For example, if you have a limit of £2,000 and you’ve used £1,000 of that, your credit utilisation is 50%. Usually, a lower percentage will be seen positively by lenders, and will increase your credit score as a result. If possible, try and keep your credit utilisation below 30%

Unused credit can be easily forgotten about and that won’t look good to a potential lender. Stay consistently active and demonstrate your ability to manage your finances.

Get on the Electoral Register

The Electoral Roll is an integral part of your Credit Report. Lenders have been known to decline an application where they can’t verify someone at their current address – especially if there is a lack of payment history to assess.

Register on the electoral roll at your current address and you can even do this if your in shared accommodation or living at home with your parents.

Assess your financial associations

Anyone that you are deemed to be financially linked to – known as a financial association – will have an effect on your ability to get credit (and vice versa). A financial association is created when you enter a credit agreement with someone else – such as a joint mortgage or current account with an overdraft – and will remain there until you ask to have the association removed.

If they have a negative history this could affect your potential to borrow.

Monitor your searches

Searches appear on your Credit Report under a few different categories. Some are there to show you – and anyone else checking it – any applications for credit that have been made.

In the vast majority of cases, credit searches don’t impact your Credit Rating, and will relate to you personally. On rare occasions though, credit applications that you don’t recognise could be the first warning sign of attempted identity theft or fraud. It’s worth checking this section of your Credit Report regularly.

Keep your accounts updated with correct address

It’s no good keeping your account information in good nick if it doesn’t show up when a lender needs to check it. The best way to make sure everything appears is to keep it all under one address format. This must be your current address and should match the address you have on your Electoral Roll listing.

Keep your accounts updated with the right name

Recently married? Divorced? Changed your name via deed-poll to Mitsubishi Von Hula-Hoop? As soon as you get a chance you’ll need to update your lenders with your new name. Driving license, passport and bank details are usually the first ones to get updated, but it’s essential to make sure your credit agreements are kept up-to-date as well to ensure the information is there the next time you go to apply for credit with your new name.

Check for any errors

Errors on your credit report are rare, but they can happen and on extremely rare occasions, they could just be severe enough to harm your ability to get credit.

Should you find an error on your Credit Report and need to dispute it it’s worth having a chat with us as well as the credit reference agency.

Boost your credit score

Some credit reference agencies allow you to boost your credit score when you can show how well you manage your money. For example Experian look for examples of your responsible financial behaviour, such as paying Netflix, Spotify, council tax on time, and paying into savings or investment account. They will share a summary of boosted data with participating lenders when you apply for a mortgage

Monitor your credit report

Your credit report is your window into the world of what lenders are assessing you on when you apply for any kind of finance. It allows you to see what credit agreements are being reported and how you’ve maintained them, how much longer any specific entries will be reported for, Electoral Roll and Court information, any financial associations, aliases and so much more.

If you want to improve your chances of getting accepted for finance, or just make sure that your creditworthiness is in the best shape it can be, there really is no better place to look than your Credit Report.

Are you looking for a mortgage? Contact one of our mortgage experts today to see if we can help you.


Contact us