Your credit history can be a hugely influential part of your life. It will be checked on numerous occasions throughout our lives, and not just when we apply for a mortgage, a new credit card, or want to take out a mobile phone contract. Your credit history holds a large volume of information about your financial behavior, and helps paint a picture to lenders as to whether you are creditworthy.
Your credit history, and your credit score, can not only decide whether you are accepted for credit or not, but can also dictate how much credit you are able to access and whether you are able to access the best interest rates and other offers available.
What You’ll Find You Check Your Credit History
When you check your credit history, you will access all the information that particular credit bureau holds against your name.
- Details of all credit applications and enquirers made in your name over the previous five years.
- Details of your repayment history for all your credit accounts over the previous two years.
- Details of all your current open credit accounts, highlighting your existing access to credit, including credit limits and the current balance of these accounts.
Opening and closing dates of all credit accounts you currently or have previously held.
- Full details of any defaults, court judgments, writs, bankruptcies, or any other serious financial and credit infringements held against your name.
Why Checking Your Credit History is Beneficial
What benefits can you expect to earn when you check your credit history?
- You can check that all the information held against your name is accurate and take action if not
- You can identify if you have been a victim of identity fraud
- You can identify opportunities for improving your credit rating
- You can give yourself an idea of whether a future credit application is likely to be accepted
Now you know what you will find, and how you can benefit, when you check your credit history, it is time to look at how you can do it.
How to Check Your Credit History Free
By law, you are able to request to see your credit report from a credit bureau free if:
- You have been refused credit in the past 90 days
- You are requesting to see your credit report to check inaccuracies have been corrected
- You have not done so within the past year, excluding any instances of having requested to do so under the circumstances above
You can request access to your credit report from Australia’s three national credit bureaus:
You can also access your credit report free from Get Credit Score, which is powered by and uses data from Equifax.
How to Check Your Credit History: Premium Services
While all three of Australia’s national credit bureaus legally have to allow you to access your credit file under the conditions noted earlier, both Equifax and Dun & Bradstreet offer premium services that include identity protection, credit alerts, and access to advice and tips for improving your credit standing.
We have shared some further information on what each offers, including costs, below.
Equifax is Australia’s leading credit bureau, and is the one used here at MacCredit when assessing medical loan applications. Equifax’s premium credit checking and account services range from $79.95 – $119.95 per year. The more expensive options provide more frequent updates to your credit score and report, as well as insuring you against the risk of being a victim of identity fraud up to $15,000.
Dun & Bradstreet
Dun & Bradstreet have operated in Australia since 1887, and today offer a range of personal credit services, with credit reports and accounts from a $15 one-off fee up to a $60 a year subscription for anyone looking for advanced protection and credit alerts.
Check Your Credit History Now
Take the time to check your credit history now and ensure that all the information held against your name is correct. Even if you are not planning to apply for credit in the near future, it is worth ensuring all the information held is accurate, as this could save you significant time and effort should you ever need to acquire credit.
Disclaimer: This article contains general comments and recommendations only. This article has been prepared without taking account of your objectives, financial situation or needs. Before taking any action you should consider the appropriateness of the comments made in the article, having regard to your objectives, financial situation and needs. If this article relates to the acquisition, or possible acquisition, of a particular credit product you should obtain and consider the relevant disclosure documents before applying for the product.