ClearScore provides users with their credit score and credit reports free of charge, based on the data from Equifax, one of the main credit reference agencies in the UK.
This means users can review their credit histories and see their credit ratings simply by signing up for a free ClearScore account. Your credit history and report are compiled from information provided by banks, local councils, lenders, courts, and utility companies, among others.
Here we’ll look at how ClearScore works and how you can view your credit report.
More than 11 million people use ClearScore to see their Equifax credit report details. With ClearScore you can see your credit score and credit report free of charge, and you can also use the platform to see whether you qualify for loan products and credit cards.
ClearScore is not a lender and is free to use for everyone in the UK, but the only requirement is that you have to be at least 18 years old.
You can see a timeline of your finances, with up to six years of your financial history. You can track how your credit score changes over time, and see important changes to understand how your credit rating is calculated and what you can do toimprove your credit score.
You can see your credit report from your main dashboard and there are five sections to view:
Other sections like searches, personal details, financial connections, electoral roll details, and more.
Your personal information, address details, and financial information is collected and added to your credit report, which you can access for free.
ClearScore has five score bands, from poor to exceptional. In November 2021, ClearScore score bands changed to comply with the April 2021 introduction of the new 1,000 Equifax credit score system. ClearScore now gives a score out of 1,000, up from its previous score of 700.
You might have noticed that your credit score is now higher than it was. This doesn't necessarily imply that your credit score has increased; rather, the new scale has resulted in a higher number.
Before April 2021, Equifax had a credit scale out of 700, divided as follows:
Since then, Equifax changed the scale to be out of 1,000 and also changed the ratings:
Poor (0 - 438)
Fair (439 - 530)
Good (531 - 670)
Very Good (671 - 810)
Excellent(811 - 1,000)
Knowing your credit scores is a great way of understanding how you can improve your credit rating. If you have a poor credit score, you can also work with a professional who specialises in debt review to help you improve your credit score and get your finances back on track.
Some of the key changes to the credit score bands from ClearScore include:
There is no longer a Very Poor credit rating
Many people who were in the Poor band before are now in the Fair band
The Good band is now larger to allow more people to fall in this range
The Excellent band is divided into Very Good and Excellent so some people who were in the old Excellent band will now fall into the Very Good band
It's possible that you ended up in a different band. Your credit score has not decreased or increased as a result, it's only because of the new scale. For instance, a credit score of 278 before November 2021 was considered to be in the Very Poor ClearScore band.
The same 278 score is now in the Poor ClearScore band. The credit score remains unchanged. The name of the band that the score now belongs to is the only thing that has changed.
Some people found themselves in a lower band, but lenders don't see it any differently. Keep in mind that it's only the name of the band that changed, not your credit score.
To fall in the Good range you need a credit score between 531 and 670.
A strong credit score is beneficial as it enables you to get credit on better terms. A low credit score won't necessarily mean you can’t get a loan, but the offers you receive will likely have higher interest rates.
The highest credit score you can get with ClearScore is 1,000. If your score is between 811 and 1,000 you will be placed in the Excellent ClearScore band.
This band will get you the best credit terms when borrowing money.
Your credit history is the most crucial component of your credit score. This is the basis for calculating your score. Although it does take time, using the advice below is a fantastic place to start:
Make all payments on time and avoid missed payments. Pay everything on time, whether it's your phone bill or your rent. Missed payments are worse than late payments but they do harm your credit score.
If you are no longer connected with an ex-partner financially, remove them from your credit history.
Use your credit responsibly and keep your credit utilisation low.
Check your credit report regularly to ensure your details are correct (you can also sign up for free identity protection).
Don't apply for many credit products at once.
Try to keep your credit card balances low.
If you're struggling with debt, you can work with debt advisors. They will help you work out agreements with your lenders and potentially avoid Country Court Judgements (CCJs).