Be savvy and get paid to check your credit report!
So many of us shy away from taking a look at our latest credit report. Why? The thought of uncovering the skeletons in our closet scares us! Very similar to the feeling that I used to get during parents evening when I was at school haha!
If I told you that you could get paid to check your file, would this change your mind? Now your interested ehhh!
Here’s my opinion on a few things before I give you the juice...
- We should check our credit report AT LEAST once a year
- Many providers offer freebies, so the excuse of 'it costs too much' doesn't exist!
- It can be a great way to check if you’re an identity theft victim. For example, if you find names that you don’t recall or see accounts that aren’t yours…
- Your overall credit score is crucial part of your financial health. It’s like getting on the scales and seeing how much you weigh - if you don't do this you don't know where you stand, what you're working with and how to set goals.
- Contrary to many people’s beliefs….checking your own credit report doesn’t actually impact your credit rating. Each check of your credit report creates something called a ‘search footprint’, however, the physical footprint left by actual credit applications are the only ones which lenders can see and can be used to calculate credit scores. Ya get me?
So, here’s the juice:
Whenever you apply for credit, a lender will want to do their due diligence on you. This can be anything from a car loan, a mortgage to a mobile phone contract. They will ring up their pals at a credit reference agency for information about your credit history. This helps them make a decision as to whether they should lend to you.
The UK has 3 main credit reference agencies.
The savvy way to get cash back for checking your file is by signing up via a ‘cash back website’.
For example, check one of these bad boys out:
These guys will pay you a specific amount when you click through via their site. For example, Quidco are offering up to £4 cash back if you select Equifax. Click through the cashback site's above to get more info!
The catch: Many agencies offer a FREE credit report, however, they begin to charge you after your free trial has ended. So, don’t forget to cancel your free trial once you've put it to good use, otherwise it will erase any gains.
Hint: Many people have complained about problems of actually receiving their cashback bonus. This can be for several reasons such as tracking issues. Therefore, don’t class is as ‘guaranteed money’. Clearing your cookies before you purchase has been known to help alleviate some of these issues. Finally, don’t store the cashback on the site and believe it’s safe there. Once you have hit your threshold to withdraw your rewards, do so, as you are otherwise missing out on interest and can lose the cash if the company goes bust!
The punchline: This is a key step to giving yourself a money makeover. Most people leave it out and believe they will deal with it once they apply for a loan or a mortgage, however, by then...it could be too late!