Apart from exerting your democratic rights, the elections can be a great time to remember to register on the electoral roll – if you haven’t already done so – giving your credit score a boost at the same time.
Having a high or low credit score could mean the difference between being approved or declined for the best financial products at the best interest rates – from mortgages, credit cards and loans to mobile phone contracts – it is always worth trying to improve your credit score and make it the best it can be.
Thomas Allder, Customer Director, from Vanquis shares his five simple tips on how to improve your credit score with little effort.
1. Add your name to the electoral roll
Getting your name onto the electoral register – also known as the electoral roll – can immediately help improve the way you’re viewed by lenders and will help boost your credit score. This is because credit reference agencies are able to verify who you are, which makes you more reliable in the lender’s eyes. You can register for the electoral roll by visiting gov.uk.
2. Correct errors in your credit report
Your credit score is based on the information within your credit report so it’s worth checking it regularly to check it’s accurate. If something is incorrect – such as an old account appearing ‘open’ when it is closed – then your credit score won’t be accurate either and is likely to be lower than it should be. You’ll need to talk to the credit reference agency directly to fix things that are incorrect.
3. Check for fraud
The other benefit to checking your credit report frequently is that you’ll be able to spot signs of fraud. If someone is trying to open credit in your name, you’ll be able to see the early signs of this in your searches and report it to Action Fraud. If someone is applying for credit in your name this will also bring your credit score down.
4. Use an eligibility checker
It’s a good idea to use a ‘soft search’ before you apply for credit or use an eligibility checker – as this does not impact your credit score if you’re rejected. Checks like this show the likelihood of being accepted for credit before applying – and will mean you won’t have to make several applications before you’re accepted.
5. Get a credit-builder card
For those new to credit, or who have a poor credit history, use a credit-builder card such as Vanquis which is designed to help improve your score. Credit-builder cards usually have lower spending limits, but by making repayments on time and in full, it can help you on your journey to improving your credit score. Before you apply for the card though make sure you use the eligibility checker.