AUSTRALIANS applying for home loans are finding simple overdue accounts are coming back to haunt them, with some even being refused finance, according to a national credit rating repairer.
My CRA’s Director, GRAHAM DOESSEL says a credit rating check can reveal defaults many are not aware of such as small overdue phone bills, electricity bills and rates which may or may not have been settled.
“It would surprise you how many people there are out there with needless defaults on their credit rating due to unpaid accounts of more than 60 days. It may also surprise you to know these ‘defaults’ can be enough for an automatic decline with some lenders. At the moment, some lenders are even rejecting loans for excess credit enquiries such as two enquiries in 30 days or six within the year” Mr DOESSEL says.
Research from September 2010 conducted by DUN & BRADSTREET revealed one third of debt referred for collection in the June quarter was amounts under $200.
“These findings demonstrate that significant portions of Australians are either unaware of the consequences of not paying their bills on time or they are facing quite significant stress and cannot afford to pay these accounts” Dun & Bradstreet’s CEO, CHRISTINE CHRISTIAN says.
The report also states that the average value of referred debts stands at the highest level in four and a half years.
Mr DOESSEL says it is extremely important for potential buyers to know there is more to preparing for a mortgage than simply saving the deposit.
“Your credit rating is as important as your savings record in calculating loan eligibility and borrowing capacity. Having a clear credit record allows you to shop for the best interest rate because you have the financial freedom to choose any bank.
“At the moment, blemishes on your credit record are viewed unfavourably by most lenders – and defaults remain on your file for 5 years. Never has there been a more important time to understand your credit rating and to keep it looking as healthy as possible” he says.
MY CRA outlines how home buyers can establish a good track record of credit:
MAKE REPAYMENTS ON TIME: Repay any bills received by the due date. Bills that are not paid within 60 days may be referred for collection and noted as a default. If people are having trouble paying on time, they should contact the creditor as they may be able to work out a payment plan rather than the creditor listing the non payment as a default.
USE CREDIT: Having no credit history means there is nothing to calculate and the risk appears high to lenders. Start by borrowing something small. Repaying mobile phone plans, internet accounts, or store credit on time will appeal to anyone checking people’s credit rating.
HAVE A STABLE ADDRESS: Lenders like to see stability. Furthermore, defaults are easy to come by when bills are sent to the wrong address. If you do travel frequently, consider a trusted family member’s address for all bills.
APPLY FOR CREDIT WITH CARE: People should only apply for credit if they feel they have a very good chance of being approved. Declined credit applications on a person’s file can hinder their chances of obtaining a home loan. Likewise, people should only apply for credit they have full intention of pursuing. Every application is noted on file, not whether it is approved or not. If a person goes shopping for the right credit and applies everywhere – the lender may consider this person to have been refused credit and therefore a bad risk.
CHECK CREDIT FILE REGULARLY: People should check their file well before they need to apply for a home loan. That way if there are any problems they can sort it out while there is no urgency, and save themselves embarrassment and disappointment from having their finance declined. The major credit reporting agencies are bound by law to send people a copy of their credit report for free within 10 working days of application. Or for a fee, Veda Advantage has a service called ‘Veda Alert’ which provides a copy of the credit file, and the person goes on alert to receive notification of any changes to the credit file within 12 months.
CLEAR YOUR DEFAULTS: If there are defaults, don’t put up with them for 5 years. People can check with a credit file repairer if they can be removed.
“If people do check their credit file and find defaults, writs or judgements which have been added without a person’s knowledge, have been added incorrectly, unjustly or unfairly there is a good possibility they can be removed by a credit repairer” he says.
Demand for third party ‘credit repairers’ has grown due to what Mr DOESSEL says is a system fraught with difficulties.
“Many of our clients have attempted to deal with creditors themselves and have come up against problems and defaults have not been cleared. Most times the creditor says defaults are never removed and remain on file for 5 years. The best they can do is mark the listing as paid if the account has been settled. This may not be sufficient to ensure credit is obtained with some lenders.”
“Most clients don’t have the time or patience for negotiation with creditors. On cases we take on, MY CRA has had a 91.7% success rate of actually removing the default” he says.
MY CRA has information for consumers on their website from how to go about obtaining a copy of their credit file, to tips on spotting identity fraud. For more information go to www.mycra.com.au.
Link to Dun & Bradstreet article:
Graham Doessel http://www.mycra.com.au/
Ph: 07 3124 7133
246 Stafford Road, STAFFORD QLD.
About MyCRA Pty Ltd
MyCRA Pty Ltd is 100% Australian owned and operated and we are based in Stafford, a northern suburb of Brisbane in Qld.
My CRA was developed for the sole purpose of giving clients access and ability to work with their Credit File. This is in order to give them the best chance of getting approval, getting a lower interest rate or just to reduce the upfront fees that can be associated with obtaining credit. My CRA are able to help you get a copy of your credit file and from that determine how we can help repair a credit file.
We have more than 15 years combined experience in working with and helping clients with their credit files. We are the fastest known credit rating repair agency in Australia. We can often remove judgements in as little as 3 days.
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