Most Brits don’t know their credit rating

Two thirds of UK adults have not checked their credit report in the last five years, according to a survey by the Money Advice Service.

The research shows that:

  • 97 per cent of people have heard of credit reports but few check their rating
  • many do not realise what credit reports are used for; 13 per cent thought they are used in criminal record checks
  • Nine out of 10 people knew that financial companies check credit scores during credit applications
  • 50 per cent did not realise that lenders also make checks when considering phone contracts and rental accommodation applications.

Credit rating checks

It costs £2 to obtain your Statutory Credit Report from a credit agency. The report will contain information covering the last six years, including:

  • name, previous and current addresses, date of birth
  • your current account provider and any overdraft details
  • a list of any credit and store cards, loans or mortgages you have
  • details of late or missed payments
  • public record information, such as County Court Judgments, property repossessions and bankruptcies.

If you find any mistakes on your credit report, contact the credit agency to correct it. You can ask for a note to be placed on your file while the errors are being rectified.

In February, James Jones, head of consumer affairs at the credit information agency Experian, said it was “important that existing or potential borrowers take steps to dealing with mistakes because not doing so could stop them getting the credit they deserve.”