Knowing your credit score

When it comes to applying for finance, lenders need to make sure they can rely on you to pay them back — and your credit score will give them a good indication of how you handle your finances. Not sure if you’ve got a credit score? Well, if you’ve ever borrowed money, signed up for a mobile plan, or have a power bill in your name, then you’ll likely already have a credit score.

What is a credit score?

Your credit score is a numerical representation of how you manage your debts and financial obligations. The number may change each month, depending on whether you pay your bills and other debts on time. Before 2014, credit reports contained very little information, focusing only on the number of credit applications and any negative behaviour.

How is my credit score calculated?

The good news is, most credit reports are now much more comprehensive, which means they also report on all your good behaviour too. When you apply for a loan or credit card, lenders may look at your credit report to see how healthy your credit score is. The report is a record of your credit history and includes whether or not you pay your creditors in a timely manner. You can keep your credit score healthy by paying your bills — including credit cards — on time. You might also want to keep applications for credit to a minimum because you don’t want lenders thinking you’re racking up debt left, right and centre.

Need access to your credit report?

It’s important to know what your credit score is if you want to apply for finance. All Australians have free access to view their credit report once every three months. When was the last time you accessed yours? Ask us how.

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