What is a credit report?
Compiled by credit reference agencies, credit reports collect information from your current and previous financial providers about the types of credit you’ve had, how much, and your repayments to create a personalised credit report.
When you apply for credit, potential lenders will want to find out whether you’ll be able to repay the debt. In addition to the information on your application, one tool they will use to decide whether or not you are a reliable borrower is your credit report.
Credit rating checks
You can check your credit rating with any of the three credit reference agencies in the UK – CallCredit, Equifax and Experian. These agencies compile information about your credit activity and will give this data to providers whenever you apply for a form of credit.
Getting a credit rating check is good as it can help bring to light any issues that may affect your application for future credit, such as a mortgage.
Free credit reports
Noddle, set up by credit reference agency CallCredit, is a website which offers free access to your credit report and also recommends certain credit cards and loans based on your credit rating. However, Noddle’s product recommendations don’t tend to cover the whole of market, meaning that better deals may be available elsewhere.
While it isn’t free to check your credit report elsewhere, it doesn’t cost a lot – getting hold of your credit report costs just £2 per credit reference agency.
As well as the £2 report, CallCredit, Equifax and Experian also offer free online credit reports as temporary introductions to their paid-for services – see the table below for a sample of the services offered by credit reference agencies and their charges.
|30 day free trial, then £14.99 a month||Identity Fraud Expenses Insurance|
Email & SMS alerts when there are changes to your report
|30 day free trial, then £7.99 a month||Simultaneously check your score across 3 credit agencies.|
Debt advice centre
Identity theft protection
|30 day free trial, then £6.99 a month||Weekly alerts|
Statutory credit report available
Customer support team
|£19.99||One off credit report check|
No monthly subscription