Why a Credit Check is Important when you have a Family

Accessing and understanding your credit report is important. Even more so if you have a family. Whether you know it or not, a credit report exists which documents many of your personal and financial details. There are plenty of reasons why you should know what it contains and make sure that it’s accurate and up to date.
Essentially, a credit check is the first port of call for any potential lender who wants to know whether you can be relied upon to repay a loan. It is by no means the only factor to determine whether you receive a loan, but it is certainly a major one. There are three credit reference agencies in the UK, including Experian which collect the relevant information and from which an interested party can order a credit report. The report itself includes details such as your address, date of birth and records of all your credit accounts over the last six years. It also records unpaid debts, bankruptcy details and relevant court judgments. Fortunately, you can have full access to an Experian credit check for free, enabling you to check and if necessary, amend the accuracy of the details in your report. It is advisable to take advantage of this for a number of reasons.
  • Your potential mortgage may depend on it: If you are applying for significant loans which will make a big impact on your family life, then check out your credit report before you do so. What may seem like small financial discrepancies, such as a late water bill or an unpaid mobile phone bill can be included in your credit report and may count against you. In other words, these relatively small details could have an impact in your application for a mortgage or a car loan. It is prudent to obtain a credit report prior to making an application for credit or loans.
  • Prospective employers: There are some employers who will run a credit check on you before deciding whether to offer you a job. This is especially so in the financial industry, where prudent financial management is crucial. Again, small details such as an irregular or incomplete address history could raise red flags for them. They are details which you might well want corrected.
  • Potential landlords and letting agencies: As a measure of trust in prospective tenants, some landlords and letting agencies also like to check a credit report. Once again, it is important to rectify any discrepancies. The only way to do this is to check the report yourself in advance. After all, it could make the difference in securing the family home of your choice. 

  • Protect against identity theft: Another extremely good reason to obtain your credit report is to guard against identity theft. Sadly, identity theft and fraud can play havoc with yours and ultimately your family’s finances and personal accounts. Thankfully, scanning your credit report is an excellent way to guard against this significant inconvenience. It gives you the opportunity to spot any strange inconsistencies or odd activity in your credit accounts. 

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*In collaboration with Julie Abrams

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