You probably know that when organisations make decisions about whether to lend to you or not, they run a credit check, among other things (read this to find out more). However, you might be less clear about what information a lender can actually see when they look at your credit profile.
To put you back in the know, we’ve got a quick rundown of everything a lender can learn about you from your credit report.
Your credit score
Your credit score is a representation of your creditworthiness at any given moment. Each credit reference agency (CRA) has its own score range, be it out of 700 or 1,000, so there is no way to compare your scores across all of the CRAs. A lender will know the score bracket of the CRA (or CRAs) it’s using to put your score into context.
At Noddle our credit score is out of 710.
How much credit you’re using
While lenders can’t see who you have financial accounts with, they can see how much credit you have available and how much you’re using. This helps them paint a picture of how you manage the money you borrow.
There are two types of searches – hard and soft – and lenders can only see hard searches. A hard search is the search that happens when you make an application, whereas a soft search tends to happen when you use a comparison or eligibility service for financial products, or when you check your credit report, for example.
While it’s important for you to see all the searches that have been run against you so you can keep an eye out for fraud, lenders are only really interested in hard searches, as they show how much credit you’re applying for. If you’re applying for lots of credit at once, it doesn’t look good to lenders.
It’s worth noting, however, that a lender can’t see whether your credit application was successful or not based on hard searches.
Defaults and county court judgements (CCJs)
Any defaults (missed payments) you’ve accrued over the last 6 years will be visible to lenders, alongside any CCJs. This is because lenders want to see how you’ve managed money in the past to help them predict how you might do so in the future.
If your credit report is showing a default or CCJ that you believe to be inaccurate, speak to the organisation with whom it is with.
If you’re financially linked to another person, such as a spouse or family member, lenders will be able to see this and view that person’s credit report too. This is because that financial link tells lenders that your ability to take on debt and pay it back depends on more than just your own financial situation.
If your credit report is showing an incorrect financial link, you can raise a dispute.
Lenders will have access to your address history over the last 8 years along with any relevant credit information for the last 6 years. Even if you didn’t give us an address during the sign-up process, it will most likely appear when a lender pulls your report.