When you apply for credit either with a phone or utility company or a loan with a bank or finance company, they generally assess both the information on your application as well as information on your credit report against their own lending policies to make a decision on whether they will give you credit.
As part of completing your application, you will have given a lender, phone or utility company permission to view your credit report held by a credit reporting body such as Equifax.
It's important to know that Equifax does not decide who should get credit, however, the information we provide may form part of the lenders' decision making.
The PDF attachment is designed for viewing through your computer. Some mobile devices are not compatible with password protected PDF files. To open your Equifax credit report you may need a PDF reader app which can be downloaded from your app store. The PDF app may provide the ability to open password protected PDF's. There are various apps available depending on mobile operating system. Please visit your app store to determine which app is best for you.
If you have been declined credit firstly you should find out why. There are a number of factors that may result in an application for credit being refused including:
- Level of income and other resources to meet the loan repayments
- Number of other loans and other financial commitments you have
- How secure your employment is
- Your credit history which can include information such as previous bankruptcy, defaults, serious credit infringements, high number of credit applications and poor repayment history.
If you have been declined credit and the information on your credit report was a factor, the lender, phone or utility company will give you details of the credit reporting body they used. If it was Equifax, the first step in understanding why your Equifax credit report has contributed to you being declined credit, is to obtain a copy of your credit report.
By getting a copy of your credit report you can better understand where you stand when it comes to applying for credit. It is important to check your credit report regularly to ensure it is accurate.
If you have been declined credit you are entitled obtain a free credit report if you apply within 90 days of being declined and provide evidence that a credit provider has declined your application for credit.
You will need to have the following information handy:
- Your full name
- Your date of birth
- Your driver's licence number
- Your current residential address
- Your previous addresses
- Your current employer or a previous employer
- Name of the organisation to which you last applied for credit
Only you may request a copy of your own Equifax credit report. For security reasons, you will be asked to verify you identity prior to receiving a copy of your credit report.
Once you have your credit report you can check that the information listed is correct. If you find something that appears to be inaccurate on your credit report it is important that you have the items investigated, and corrected, if required. Equifax can help you to investigate this for you for free. Equifax takes reasonable steps to ensure that your credit report is accurate. However, as we rely on information provided by a number of different sources, errors can occur. It's important that you check your report and let us know if there are any administrative errors such as an incorrect date of birth, or a misspelling of your name or street address. You should also check that the credit information listed on your credit report, such as an overdue debt or enquiry is accurate.
Once you have made any required corrections, you can also work to improve your credit worthiness.
Need more information? The ASIC MoneySmart website also has information about loan rejection.
There is no set frequency with which your credit report is updated. Your consumer credit report may be updated monthly, every time account repayment history information such as if you have paid a credit card, or other personal credit, on time is added. If it has not been paid on time this will also be recorded.
Your credit report may also be updated whenever you apply for credit, open or close an account, change your credit limit or agree to act as a guarantor for someone else. Credit providers may also update your report when they list any overdue debts you may have incurred and we may also add certain information obtained from third parties, such as default judgments, court writs and Bankruptcy Act information.
Your business credit report may be updated whenever you apply for credit, change your credit limit or are listed as a new director. Credit providers may also update your report when they list any overdue debts you may have incurred and we may also add certain information obtained from third parties, such as default judgments, court writs and Bankruptcy Act information.
Here are some simple tips to help avoid a default:
- Pay your bills on time – set up direct debits or schedule repayments for your pay day
- Keep track of your credit commitments – do your research before you apply and only apply for credit when you really need it
- Notify credit providers when you move address
- If you are struggling to make repayments speak to your credit provider
- Get a copy of your Equifax credit report and Equifax Score. Don’t be scared to find out what’s on it as it ultimately could save you money
You can only have a default removed if it was listed in error. If you have a default on your credit report it will remain there for five years. If you pay the default, the status will be updated to ‘paid’ however it cannot be removed.