You have been busy saving for a house, looking for a new car or evaluating which rewards credit card is best for you. You are now ready to apply but have you first considered how your credit score may influence your application?
Before making any application for credit it is important to find your credit score and if necessary, request your credit report to begin making steps to improve it.
What is a Credit Report and Credit Score (or Credit Rating)?
Your credit report contains information about your credit history collected by a credit reporting agency.
A credit report can include:
- Personal Information including previous names, DOB, past addresses, driver licence number and employer.
- All applications made for credit.
- Loans and joint loan information, credit card balances and credit card limits.
- Defaults and amounts with debt collections.
- Overdue and late payments.
- Repayment history.
- Any adverse financial events such as bankruptcy, court judgements or debt agreements in your name.
A credit score is numerical value which is calculated from your credit report. A credit score is used by lenders during the application process to help them determine if you are suitable as a borrower.
A credit score is usually between 0 – 1200 or 0 - 1000, depending on which credit score method is used, where the higher the number the more credit-worthy you are.
Your credit score is largely calculated on your repayment history, number of credit application you have made and any adverse events that may be captured on your credit report. Also a factor in your credit score is length of your credit history, your current credit limits, outstanding balances and existing loan amounts.
How do I find out my credit score and get a free copy of my credit report?
A common myth is that checking your credit report or credit score has a negative impact on your credit score. This is untrue and knowing your overall credit health is an important step before applying for credit or a loan.
You can find out and monitor your credit score using the following websites:
To obtain your credit report you can request it once every 12 months from the following credit reporting agencies at no cost:
If you find any errors on your credit report it is important to take action to fix or remove the errors. You can view the Your Credit Report Factsheet or visit the ASIC’s Money Smart website for further information.
Changes to credit reporting – Comprehensive Credit Reporting (CCR)
From February 2018, the information collected for your credit report changed. Rather than only negative events being recorded on your credit report, Australia’s new credit reporting system will collect positive credit information. This is known as Comprehensive Credit Reporting (CCR) and provides a more accurate overall credit score, as positive behaviour is now measured against any adverse event on your credit report.
For further information regarding credit reports and credit scoring you can visit the following useful pages:
If you require further assistance in assessing your suitability for a loan or credit with Regional Australia Bank please contact our Regional Australia Bank Relationship Specialists on 132 067 to arrange an appointment.