If you are not sure what your credit score is like: you can find this out for free via sites like Noddle. This will tell you a bit about your credit history, how you manage what you borrow, as well as your credit score. The higher the score the better, but if you have a low credit score, there are steps you can take to improve it. These include paying back loans on the date agreed or early.
If you are looking for a more in-depth credit report, you can also request to see your credit file through any of the UK’s three credit reference agencies. These agencies are CallCredit, Equifax, and Experian: each report will cost you a couple of pounds. They may vary slightly, but all the key information like your personal details will remain the same. Generally, you won’t need to see these reports when taking out credit or even assessing your credit situation. A full credit report may be requested if an individual suspects that fraudulent applications have been made in their name, or if there are incorrect details on their credit report. If you believe that this may be the case, you can find out more information about fraud here.
If you do have bad credit, there are a number of reasons for this. Your credit history stays on your credit file for six years, so if you missed or made a late payment, even if it was years ago, this can impact your credit score. You might alternatively have what is referred to as a ‘thin credit file’, which means that you haven’t taken out much credit previously, or even any at all. Not having much of a credit footprint can sometimes be as bad as having negative marks on your credit file. Lenders have no basis on which to make their decisions, as they can’t see how you’ve handled credit in the past.