Depending on where you live, you may find that several companies can provide you with your credit score, but a simple Google search is the best way to initially find your credit.
Your credit score is used for a few reasons. First, it’s used by companies that may lend you money in the form of a loan. This may be a short-term loan, a credit card, or a mortgage. It may also be used by a company selling you a product for several months or years like a car or sofa. The similarity is that in all of these cases, the lending company wants to know if you’re going to make your payments, and that you aren’t going to default on your debt. Your credit score is a representation of how trustworthy you are to lend to. If you have a poor credit rating, it will be challenging to get a car on finance, a mortgage, or even a credit card. If you have good credit, you’ll be able to borrow money on good or better terms than the average person, as you’ve proven that you’re trustworthy to pay it back.
A poor credit rating may happen for some reasons. It may be that you simply have no credit history – you may be young and haven’t needed to borrow before, for example. If this is the case, then building your credit rating won’t be as difficult as if you have poor credit from being unable to make a payment in the past. If you simply have no credit, there are several things you can do to improve it. A credit card is an excellent place to start building your credit, as this is quite simple to acquire, and you can control the payments very easily. If you’re struggling to get a standard credit card, try to search for cards that are specifically made for people with little or poor credit. These will generally have very strict repayment rules, and if you can’t repay, you’ll be charged a significant amount of interest. However, they are much easier to apply for in the first place. Once you have your credit card, it would be a good idea to make a small payment on it every month – for example, your groceries or a subscription service that you pay for at the same time each month. You can then arrange for the amount to be paid off straight away each month. Doing this for several months will start to build your credit, so that you can borrow more money in the future. For more information, especially if you’re a student, see ELFI for more information. This includes guides on how to minimize your costs at college and refinancing student loans with ELFI.