FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS

ABOUT CREDITKNOWLEDGE.CO.UK

Who Is CreditKnowledge.co.uk?

CreditKnowledge.co.uk is a reporting service, enabling our customers to access, understand and manage their Credit Report and Score.

The information used to make your Credit Report and Score is obtained from a UK Credit Reference Agency and may include details about your previous credit history. This same information may also be used by lenders and credit providers to help them make a decision on providing credit to potential borrowers.

How Can I Contact CreditKnowledge.co.uk?

You can contact us by post, telephone or email.

Post: MediaBlanket t/a CreditKnowledge.co.uk, The Old Bank, 247 Chapel Street, Salford, M3 5EP

Telephone: 0161 711 0420

Email: hello@creditknowledge.co.uk

CREDIT REPORTS & SCORES

What Is A Credit Report?

In simple terms a credit report is a record of your credit history, showing how you manage your finances. It details information such as how long you have had credit accounts, how much debt you have, if you have CCJ’s, basically how you have previously handled credit.

The information on this report helps lenders assess your level of risk when making a decision about providing you with credit.

What Information Is Included on a Credit Report?

  • Personal Information: Including Your name, addresses
  • Financial Associations: For example someone you have taken out joint credit with
  • Credit Accounts: Including loans, mortgages and credit cards
  • Credit Searches: A record of the companies and dates when your credit report has been retrieved for a credit application
  • Public Records: Details about CCJ’s, bankruptcies and electoral roll

Why Is My Credit Report Important?

The information on your Credit Report is used to create your Credit Score, a number which represents your credit history. If your Credit Report shows a positive credit history i.e. you make your payments on time, you will have a higher score. This may help you get loans and credit cards at lower rates. However, if your Credit Report details a history of missed payments or multiple CCJ’s, your Credit Score will be lower. This may mean that it will be more difficult for you to get approved for credit as it could indicate to a lender that you will have difficulty repaying in the future.

You should check your Credit Report on a regular basis, and before making credit applications. By doing this, you can highlight any mistakes on your file which may prevent you from obtaining credit. Also, it will allow you to check if any fraudulent applications have been made in your name.

What Is A Credit Score?

A Credit Score is a number that is calculated from your Credit Report to represent your credit history. The higher the number the better, as those with a higher score are generally viewed as being a lower risk and are more likely to obtain credit at more favourable terms.

It is important to note that your Credit Score is only a guide as it is not the same as an individual lender's score. Even if you have a high Credit Score it does not guarantee that you will be accepted for credit as each lender has different criteria when assessing which customers to lend money to.

Do Lenders See My Credit Score?

No.  Your Credit Score is only available to you and should be used as a guide to help you gain knowledge about your credit profile.

When you make a credit application, the lender will assess this based on your most recent Credit Report activity. The lender will not see historical information which has since changed.

When making a lending decision, lenders will take into account various factors including:

  • The details provided in your enquiry
  • Data from the Credit Reference Agency: credit payment history, if you are on the electoral roll at your present address, if you have any CCJ’s or Insolvencies
  • Details surrounding existing accounts you have with the lender
  • That lender's internal rules and policies

Does Checking My Credit Report Lower My Credit Score?

No! Using CreditKnowledge.co.uk will never impact your credit score.

How Do I Access My Credit Report & Score?

By signing up to CreditKnowledge.co.uk, you will be able to view your Credit Report & Credit Score (based upon the information recorded on the Credit Report as shown by CreditKnowledge.co.uk) online.

View your Credit Report & Score by signing up here today. Please see site footer for selected subscription details and Terms of Use for full details.

UNDERSTANDING YOUR CREDIT REPORT

How Regularly Is Credit Account Information Updated?

Although lenders and organisations generally update their files with a Credit Reference Agency every month, there are circumstances where it can take up to 12 weeks for the data to be updated.

What Are The Account Types?

Active Accounts: These accounts are still open, and will usually be updated by the lender monthly, however in some circumstances it can take up to 12 weeks

Settled Accounts: This is an account where you have made all of the necessary payments and it has been closed. These accounts may be one where the term has ended, such as a loan or mortgage, or one which you have closed, for example a credit card account.

What Do The Account Status Codes Mean?

The status codes on your credit report show if you have made your credit repayments on time and if you are up to date with the payments. If you have missed any payments it will show how many months in arrears you are.

If the lender has deemed that you have broken the terms of the credit agreement (generally if you fall 6 months behind), the account will show as being in Default.  Where possible, it is important that you keep up with your repayments as a Default will remain on your Credit Report for 6 years and it may impact on your ability to obtain credit in the future. Even if you make all of the repayments after the defaulted is dated, the history of your account will not change, and the status history of ‘D’ will show that you have defaulted on the account.

How Long Will A Default Stay On My Report?

A record of all defaulted accounts is held for six years from the date the lender decided that the terms of the agreement had been broken (the ‘default’ date). 

Can I Remove A Paid Judgement From My Report?

Only in the following circumstance will a judgement be removed:

  • If six years have passed since the original court date
  • If the case is set aside after being taken back to court
  • You can produce evidence from them that an insurance company was responsible for the debt
  • If paid within one month

A judgement can still be marked as Satisfied on your file if paid more than one month after the original judgement. To do this you need to send a Credit Reference Agency the appropriate Certificate of Satisfaction. Although the judgement will remain on your file for six years from the judgement date, lenders will be able to see that it has been paid.

What is a Notice of Correction?

A Notice of Correction is your chance to explain why you feel your Credit Score has been affected by something which you feel was unavoidable. It is a short note (no longer than 200 words) that you can add to an entry on your Credit Report, enabling you to further explain the background to a lender when they are assessing you for credit worthiness.

As a lender is obliged to read A Notice of Correction before making their decision, it can slow down your credit application.

After signing up to your Credit Report, if you want to add a Notice of Correction, write to a Credit Reference Agency with your full name, address, email address login and the note that you would like to be added to your file.

Do remember that it cannot be incorrect, frivolous, defamatory or libellous and must not be longer than 200 words.

What Is A Financial Association?

An associate is someone who you are financially connected to, for example someone you have shared a joint mortgage or joint bank account with.  A record is kept of any person who is financially associated with you, and you will see information such as the details of the associate, the date the link was created, and the name of the company who created the link.

In order to disassociate yourself from someone you have had a financial connection with, make sure that any joint accounts are transferred to a single name or closed.

Some of My Account Information Is Wrong, How Do I Get It Changed?

Please note that it can take up to 12 weeks for any changes to show on your CreditKnowledge.co.uk Credit Report. This is because the data providers update account balances in general every 4-6 weeks, but in some instances it can take up to 12 weeks. If it has gone past this time, then you can seek to amend it by:

Contacting the company that the account relates to. They can make the necessary amendment or ask the Credit Reference agency to update your file if they agree the information is incorrect

or

If you are a CreditKnowledge.co.uk member, you can raise the issue via your account

Alternatively, you can write to TransUnion at TransUnion, Dispute Team, PO Box 491, Leeds, LS3 1WZ, please include all supporting material (for example statements or letters from the lender involved). This will be sent on your behalf to the relevant lender and it is expected that you will receive a response within 28 days. Making repayments to a defaulted account after the defaulted date does not change the history of the account even when you have made all the repayments. The status history of 'D' shows that you have defaulted on the account.

CREDIT REFERENCE AGENCIES

What Is a Credit Reference Agency?

A Credit Reference Agency (CRA) is an independent company that collects and securely holds data and reports finance-related and public information about you. This information, including details about your credit applications, financial history and current accounts is provided upon request to potential lenders, employers or landlords. This is used to help in identifying you, or when in relation to taking out credit, the likelihood of your defaulting on payment.

Who Are The Credit Reference Agencies?

In the UK, there are four main Credit Reference Agenices: Crediva, Equifax, Experian and TransUnion (formerly Callcredit). You are able to contact them direct using the addresses below:

TransUnion Consumer Services, TransUnion International UK Limited, PO Box 491, Leeds, LS3 1WZ
Crediva Crediva Limited, LexisNexis Risk Solutions, Global Reach, Dunleavy Drive, Cardiff, CF11 0SN
Equifax Equifax Ltd, Customer Service Centre, PO Box 10036, Leicester, LE3 4FS
Experian Customer Support Centre, Experian Ltd, PO BOX 9000, Nottingham
NG80 7WF

In order to provide your Credit Report, CreditKnowledge.co.uk uses TransUnion (formerly Callcredit).

IDENTITY FRAUD

I Think I Am a Victim of Identity Fraud – What Should I Do?

It is important that you check your Credit Report on a regular basis so that you will notice if something looks strange as this could be a sign that your stolen identity is being used to make credit applications. 

If you think you have been a victim of Identity Theft you should:

  • Immediately report any lost or stolen credit cards, debit cards or documents to the issuing company
  • Check your Credit Report for any accounts of credit applications that you are not aware of
  • If you are contacted about credit agreements that you are not aware of, tell the company as soon as possible, they will advise if you need to contact the police
  • Keep a record of all material connected with the fraud, for example make a note of all of the calls and keep all letters and emails
  • Contact the Royal Mail Investigations Unit if you suspect that your post has been stolen or redirected fraudulently. Contact the Mailing Preference Service to try to remove your name from mailing lists if you think your details are being used at another address
  • Consider adding a Notice of Correction to your file which contains a password and instructions to lenders that they should decline any application that does not quote this password.  

For an administration fee of £20.00, Cifas - the UK's fraud prevention service - can place a 'Protective Registration' warning on your credit file. This will tell lenders that you think your personal information is at risk of being used fraudulently. When they receive an application with your details, they'll make more checks to make sure the person applying is you and not a fraudster. It may mean that any applications you make are delayed while there is further verification of your I.D.

CREDIT REFUSAL

How Do I Know If I Am On The Credit Blacklist?

There is a common misconception that should you have not been financially responsible that you can be blacklisted for credit. This is a myth – there is no such thing as a Credit Blacklist.  The Credit Reference Agencies only provide factual information.

Why Have I Been Refused Credit?

Although a high credit score can indicate that you are more likely to be offered credit, it is not a guarantee. As each Credit Reference Agency has their own calculation of a Credit Score, the one that is used by the lender to assess your application for credit will be dependent on which agency they are using. Also, as explained above,  when deciding whether or not to grant credit a lender will consider further factors alongside your Credit Report. For further information on why you have been refused credit you need to contact the lender directly.

How Can I Improve My Chances Of Getting Credit?

When making a lending decision, lenders are looking for proof that you are able to repay your existing credit on time, so it is important that you pay all your bills and credit agreements on time. It is important that the information you provide on credit application forms is accurate, truthful and complete. If you do not provide a true overview of your circumstances, it may affect your ability to get credit in the future.

  • If you are planning on making a credit application, or if you are being declined for credit, make sure that you check your Credit Report. Although it does not state why your application has been declined (only the lender can tell you this), it does include the information that the lender will check and may help you understand why you were refused
  • Avoid making repeated applications for credit if you have been declined as your Credit Score can be impacted due to the searches by the lender being recorded on your Credit Report. This may indicate to lenders that you are hungry for credit, and this may be a sign of financial difficulty. (Viewing your own report will not be seen by lenders)
  • Lenders use information on the electoral roll to confirm your address. Being on the electoral roll also shows stability, and this may be perceived by lenders that you are more likely to maintain credit repayments, so it is important that you ensure this is up to date on your report
  • If you think there is an error on your Credit Report, contact the lender directly and if they agree that the data should be amended they will advise the Credit Reference Agency. Do remember that unless the data is incorrect, you are unable to remove a Court Judgement or Default from your credit profile
  • Make sure that you view your Credit Report on a regular basis. By signing up to CreditKnowledge.co.uk you get unlimited access to your Credit Report. Sign up here now

I Am In Debt – Where Can I Get Help?

There are a number of free, impartial organisations who can help you if you are struggling with debt:

Citizens Advice

Citizens Advice provides independent, confidential and free advice on getting out of debt, and a variety of other issues. 

Website: www.citizensadvice.org.uk

Money Advice Scotland (MAS)

Money Advice Scotland (MAS) is a registered charity, and the national umbrella organisation promoting the development of free, impartial, independent, confidential money / debt advice and financial inclusion.

Website: www.moneyadvicescotland.org.uk

Tel: 0141 572 0237

The Money Advice Service

The Money Advice Service is set up by the government to give free advice, unbiased, independent advice.

Website: www.moneyadviceservice.org.uk

Tel: 0800 138 7777

National Debtline

National Debtline is a debt charity that provides free, impartial and confidential advice.

Website: www.nationaldebtline.org

StepChange

StepChange provides comprehensive debt advice and help to people with debt problems take back control of their finances.

Website: www.stepchange.org

BILLING & CANCELLATIONS

How Will I Be Billed?

If applicable, an initial payment will be payable immediately at the time of application, or on the date as specified in our offer to you (for example 14 days after sign up if Free Trial Period is offered) and thereafter a subscription fee will be payable at the frequency quoted in the site footer.

How Do I Cancel My Account?

You may cancel or terminate this agreement at any time by calling us at 0161 711 0420 or by notifying us in writing at: Cancellations, MediaBlanket Ltd t/a CreditKnowledge.co.uk, The Old Bank, 247 Chapel Street, Salford, M3 5EP.

In order that we meet our obligations under data protection regulations, please confirm the following information: -

Full Name

Email address that you used to register for your account; we cannot locate you in our records if you provide a different email address

Mobile number that you used to register for your account

The post code that you used when registering