When you apply for any form of credit, such as a credit card, personal loan or mortgage, one of the first things a lender will do is check that your credit score is up to scratch.
Your credit score effectively shows how well you’ve managed credit in the past. The higher your score, the more likely any credit applications you make will be accepted, whereas the lower your score, the harder you’ll find it to borrow.
Access your score with Credit Monitor
MoneySuperMarket's Credit Monitor app gives you a free credit score and credit report, and help finding the cards you're likely to be accepted for.
Once you’ve registered, we’ll show you your full credit report. We'll let you know what you can do to boost your score, and if it changes you’ll find out why – a free service, unique to Credit Monitor.
You’ll be able to see a summary of the balances on your credit cards or overdraft, and how much of your credit limit you're using. We’ll also reveal the credit cards you’re likely to get based on your report, giving you peace of mind that with Credit Monitor, you'll only see cards that are within your reach.
Alternative ways to check your score
There are three main credit reference agencies, Experian, Transunion and Equifax, all of which will have a record of your credit rating. You can get a copy of your statutory credit file for £2 from any of these agencies. Your statutory report provides basic information about your credit history, but doesn’t include extras such as ‘credit monitoring services’ or fraud alerts.
How your credit score is shown
Different credit reference agencies show your score in different ways. Regardless of which numbers are used, the higher the score you get, the better your credit score is.
If your score isn’t what you were expecting, make sure there aren’t any irregularities in your credit report. For example, can you spot any information that is incorrect, such as missed payments when you know you paid on time?
If you find something wrong, let the relevant company know so they can amend their records, and put a ‘notice of correction’ on your credit report explaining why the information shown is incorrect.
Bear in mind that your credit score will form only part of any lender’s decision whether or not to lend to you.
They will all base their decisions on different criteria, so just because you are refused by one provider, that doesn’t necessarily mean you will be turned down by them all.
It’s also important you don’t make multiple credit applications if you are initially refused though as this could damage your credit score further.