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What your credit score really means

edited 9 January 2019 at 2:57PM in Credit File & Ratings
394 replies 211K views
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  • edited 30 November 2015 at 11:44AM
    reduxredux Forumite
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    edited 30 November 2015 at 11:44AM
    Can those pre-application "soft searches" be added to this catalogue of uselessness and consequent derision?

    MSE are part of this. I've used their search about credit cards a couple of times, and learned that I had zero chance of holding a card I already have.

    Some time later that score was almost 100%. Later still I've seen the same card at zero and 90% on the very same day, just by looking in a different category.

    But I'm starting to suspect many such pre-searches might be useless.

    The other day I was applying for a new bank account, one of those with a decent rate of interest.

    Why not try our eligibility test first, it said.

    20% chance of getting the account, and 0 to 1% chance of an overdraft.

    Oh dear, oh well, but I'll try anyway, just to see.

    Application approved, and would you like a £250 overdraft?

    Errrm .... I didn't want an overdraft, but for a couple of minutes I wondered what effect it might have on my future credit rating if I took it on anyway but never used it. Then I declined.
  • glentoran99glentoran99 Forumite
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    redux wrote: »
    Can those pre-application "soft searches" be added to this catalogue of uselessness and consequent derision?

    MSE are part of this. I've used their search about credit cards a couple of times, and learned that I had zero chance of holding a card I already have.

    Some time later that score was almost 100%. Later still I've seen the same card at zero and 90% on the very same day, just by looking in a different category.

    But I'm starting to suspect many such pre-searches might be useless.

    The other day I was applying for a new bank account, one of those with a decent rate of interest.

    Why not try our eligibility test first, it said.

    20% chance of getting the account, and 0 to 1% chance of an overdraft.

    Oh dear, oh well, but I'll try anyway, just to see.

    Application approved, and would you like a £250 overdraft?

    Errrm .... I didn't want an overdraft, but for a couple of minutes I wondered what effect it might have on my future credit rating if I took it on anyway but never used it. Then I declined.

    thats true though, you have one so cant get another, as for your bank account, you had a 20% chance of approval and were approved, if it said you didnt have a chance you would have a valid point
  • reduxredux Forumite
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    thats true though, you have one so cant get another, as for your bank account, you had a 20% chance of approval and were approved, if it said you didnt have a chance you would have a valid point

    MSE don't know which credit cards I have, so they wouldn't automatically discount any for that reason.
  • glentoran99glentoran99 Forumite
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    redux wrote: »
    MSE don't know which credit cards I have, so they wouldn't automatically discount any for that reason.

    Your credit report shows it though and that's what they are searching
  • Well I should have looked earlier. Just bought 'creditscore' and wonderd why it didn't take some stuff inot account. Now I know. O well older and wiser. Good to know the banks don't take much notice.
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  • rizla_kingrizla_king Forumite
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    What your credit score really means

    means if you paid for one, you have been done over
    Still rolling rolling rolling...... :) <
    SIGNATURE - Not part of post
  • I find it bizarre and unhelpful to people looking for advice when people on here comment that credit scores mean nothing!

    1) many people have had mortgage offer withdrawn due to the recent Experian credit scoring change and if they mean nothing why would that happen??

    2) I had a pre approved mortgage rate via my bank which disappeared the day Experian changed they scoring and when I queried I was told it was due to the change in my score

    3) My friend is an underwriter at a household name finance company and I asked her last week about this and she said that whilst they use their own scoring criteria, eg similar profiling, employment etc, there is heavy reliance on CRA scores. She said they don't get score as such but more a you should decline, you might want further info etc. However she said they're now getting more decline recommendations since the score change.

    I think advising people that credit scores mean nothing is harmful advise and factually incorrect.
  • So it is all about history then it would seem. Wish I had some!
  • SuperscroogeSuperscrooge Forumite
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    I find it bizarre and unhelpful to people looking for advice when people on here comment that credit scores mean nothing!

    1) many people have had mortgage offer withdrawn due to the recent Experian credit scoring change and if they mean nothing why would that happen??

    2) I had a pre approved mortgage rate via my bank which disappeared the day Experian changed they scoring and when I queried I was told it was due to the change in my score

    3) My friend is an underwriter at a household name finance company and I asked her last week about this and she said that whilst they use their own scoring criteria, eg similar profiling, employment etc, there is heavy reliance on CRA scores. She said they don't get score as such but more a you should decline, you might want further info etc. However she said they're now getting more decline recommendations since the score change.

    I think advising people that credit scores mean nothing is harmful advise and factually incorrect.

    I suggest checking out the below link from the MSE site to understand the difference between credit history and credit score as it helps explain why credit history is all important and why your credit score is basically a marketing tool to persuade you to visit the credit reference website regularly so that they can sell you other products.

    http://www.moneysavingexpert.com/loans/what-credit-scores-mean

    Quote from the above link re credit scores......
    some bright spark at the credit reference agencies realised they could generate a business called 'credit management'. It meant they could start to sell you all the other sorts of data and monitoring products for the first time and start making money from it. You ask why they sell it to you – well, it makes them money.

    I think formurites are just trying to point out that it's the CREDIT HISTORY that is important NOT the credit score
  • zx81zx81 Forumite
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    I think advising people that credit scores mean nothing is harmful advise and factually incorrect.

    You may think that, but of course you would be completely and utterly wrong.
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