How to move forward, when you have bad credit.
To begin, let's clarify what "bad credit" means. Overall it's when your individual credit report has negative listings on it, such as defaults, judgments, writs, part 9's or bankruptcy. These listing can remain on your credit file between 5 - 7 years before they eventually clear. These negative listings are considered bad because they indicate an agreed loan or service provided to you has not been conducted correctly. These listings will indicate whether the debt is still outstanding or has since been resolved and repaid. Whichever it is, it will mean that you will be viewed as a "higher risk" to a prospective lender or service provider. Consequently, trying to obtain credit or a new service provider can prove more difficult compared to someone who has a good or clean credit report with no negative listings.
What should I do if I've been told I have bad credit?
The first thing you should do is obtain a copy of your credit report so that you can understand what is causing your bad credit score or rating. You are legally allowed to request a free copy of your credit report in the following situations:
- Once every twelve months
- If you have been declined for a credit application
The credit bureau that maintains your credit report will provide this to you within 10 days, but if you need it urgently, you can choose to pay a fee. Once you receive your credit report, check that all the details are correct. If there are any mistakes contact the bureau immediately to discuss the process of removal. Once you have determined what exactly is causing your bad credit, your next step is to understand what lenders/service providers will accept customers with such listing.
How do I find lenders who will accept my level of bad credit?
Initially you need to do your own research or ask a finance or personal loan broker for help. The most important tip we have for you at this stage is once you have located a potentially suitable lender, that you contact them and discuss your credit report before you complete an application. Just reading their website or general information may not cover all of their lending rules, so being transparent with your bad credit first will allow both parties to determine if it is worth applying. This is critical because whenever you complete an application, the majority of lenders will order a copy of your credit report and this will create a "credit enquiry" on your credit file. Credit enquiries detail all the applications you’ve made for credit over the last five years. If there are a lot of enquiries, then lender's tend to interpret this as a bad sign. If your report has excessive enquiries, then speak to the lender, show them your credit report and ask them how long you should wait before they would be comfortable in assessing an application from you. Potentially you may not be able to find any lender willing to consider an application from you right now, but the key is to ask as many questions and be up front and honest with them. They may be comfortable reconsidering you in 3,6 or 12 months in which case you can get any other important documentation in place and ready to go for when this time arrives.
Will Fair Go Finance consider people with bad credit?
The short answer is yes, we can certainly assist people with certain levels of bad credit, but this does not mean every type or level of bad credit. That's why we hope you will review our website, and then contact us when you have a full understanding of what is on your credit report. We will be more than happy to advise whether you are eligible to apply now, or provide you with a time frame in which you could return. Going forward with bad credit is achievable, the key is to be honest and transparent right from the start. You may need to wait a certain time frame but this is a far better option that staying on the never ending cycle of applying everywhere you can and damaging your credit report even further with excessive credit enquiries. If you're still unsure, please talk to us, we're here to help.