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If you’ve struggled with money and keeping up with the bills has been a challenge, it’s quite likely that this has had a negative impact on your credit score.

It’s time to take control of your finances and get your score on the rise! We’ve got a few tips to help you along the way.

What is a credit score?

A credit score is a number attributed to you to determine how eligible you are to access financial products. This could be anything from a phone contract or an overdraft to car finance or a mortgage. The higher your score, the more likely you are to be accepted for credit. If your score is low, it’s likely that you’ll be rejected when applying.

How is a credit score calculated?

A credit score takes into account multiple factors including your income, any current credit owed and how you have handled repayments in the past. Factors such as missed payments or large monthly repayments can have a negative impact on your rating.

Where can I check my credit score?

There are multiple websites where you can check your credit score for free, such as Experiean or ClearScore. You should not pay for a credit check if looking for yourself. Many companies have their own credit checking system, so you will not have to provide your rating when applying for credit.

What is considered a good credit score?

As each company has a different scoring system, there is no specific number that you need to hit. However, each system will tell you whether the score is poor or good – this will not vary.

How can I improve my credit score?

If you’ve checked your credit rating and feel that it should be improved, there are a few things you can do to ensure your score keeps climbing.

Check what you owe

Whether it’s a store card, car payments or a monthly phone bill, make sure you’re on top of how much you’re currently paying out. These lines of credit add up to more than you think. See if any can be reduced by checking your phone contracts – if it’s past the contract term you may be able to renegotiate a cheaper price.

Make a repayment plan

One of the largest damages to a credit rating is a missed repayment. It’s understandable if your money simply couldn’t stretch far enough to make that month’s repayments, but you should communicate this to who you owe.

Sitting down and figuring out how much you can afford to pay each month will allow you to reach out to the companies you owe to and renegotiate the repayments. The majority of the time, you’ll find that the customer services team on the other side of the phone are happy to help make the repayments more affordable.

Avoid taking out new credit

It may seem appealing to grab some new clothes on a store card or fast credit such as Klarna, but this can do long term damage to your credit score.

Make a monthly budget for treats and stick to it while you’re getting your credit back on track – you won’t regret it!

Get Vox Money’s budgeting tools at your fingertips – sign up for an account today! 

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