Monitor your credit score & affordability
I would pay Experian a monthly fee of £14.99 to monitor my credit score for years, which flatlined at ‘Very Poor’. I had maxed out my credit cards and would pay the minimum payments each month. Only for me to then spend any different there was on the card. Over the last 12 months I have been paying my monthly loan back, but was unable to pay anything off my credit cards. It was only when I started a new job in January, did I use my monthly income to pay off my loan in full and start attacking my credit cards.
MoneySavingExpert.com Credit Club – a totally free way to check your credit score.
According to MSE, your credit acceptability impacts far more than just whether you’ll get mortgages, loans or credit cards. It also affects how good a deal you’ll get for other things. Such as gas and electricity, mobile phones.
MSE launched its own Credit Club, so you can now access your own free Experian Credit Score. Plus your unique Affordability Score, Credit Hit Rate and tips to boost them.
A credit score alone isn’t enough – what counts in the real world is, will you be accepted?
A credit score is a key indicator of your creditworthiness. But that’s just one piece of the jigsaw. Credit scores exclude crucial information such as income. So even if you’ve the best credit score, if you can’t afford a product, you’ll be rejected. The Credit Club includes other metrics such as your Affordability Score and Credit Hit Rate that incorporate these.
I started the 2mins Wallet Workout. I attempted to apply for a credit card (balance transfer), which according to Money Saving Expert I am 90% eligible for. Typically it says that in 5 days I will find out the decision. Eek.
5 main Credit Club tools:
I receive a monthly free email each month with updates on my scores.
1. Free Experian Credit Score:
Your credit score analyses how a typical lender views you based on your payment history, applications, the credit you have and more. Experian is the biggest credit reference agency which deals with a majority of lenders.
2. MSE’s unique new Affordability Score:
MSE’s affordability score is something lenders do, but isn’t part of any public credit score. For the first time anywhere (that we know of) MSE mimics the way lenders check if you can afford a product, by looking at factors such as your income, exposure to debt and estimated expenditure. And we’ve also specific affordability scores for loans, credit cards and (coming soon) mortgages.
3. Credit Hit Rate in the real world:
Your credit report combined with your affordability dictates likely acceptance of future credit. MSE’s Credit Hit Rate shows the percentage of a basket of top deals you’re likely to get in the real world.
4. Credit Cards & Loans Eligibility Calculator:
Every application you make for a product leaves a mark on your credit report. Yet the only way to know if you’ll be accepted is to apply. Here we break that catch-22 system, by showing product by product, what your odds are of getting each top deal – letting you home in on the best without impacting your creditworthiness.
5. What you need to know about YOUR credit profile:
This is crucial information showing how strong your credit profile is and where it’s weak, which may enable you to improve it.
Martin says: “The team and I have been working on this for a long time. There’s a lot more we’re planning to add, but it’s got to the stage where I think there’s a vast amount of unique information already, so it’d be wrong to hold it back any further.
MSE future plans include…
- A free full credit report. You’ll be able to see your Experian Credit Report in detail too, to check line by line.
- How your scores have changed over time. A timeline showing how each score has changed to monitor progress.
- How you compare with others. This allows you to benchmark how you’re doing compared with everyone else. After all, a 72% hit rate may not seem brilliant, but if only 1 in 1,000 people get it, it’s pretty good.
- Detailed help specific to you. The aim is, we’ll analyse your situation and present the right tips, guides, articles and videos on how to improve your file.
For the full set, see our Credit Club FAQs page