I talk a fair bit about checking your credit report regularly on Savings Guide – and for good reason I might add. I had my own personal experience with the consequences of not knowing what lies beneath your credit file when I went to buy my very first home.
It scared me to death and I remember saying to myself, ‘if only someone had of told me this!’. So what happened? Well, I found my dream home and had to rush an application for finance with a lender. They immediately went into my credit history and started asking me questions on things I had no idea about. ‘Why were you late repaying this credit card a year ago?’, ‘Why is this credit card still open?’. Questions I had no answer to and often surprised me (e.g. I thought I shut that credit card?).
These ‘gremlins’ as I like to call them are lurking on many people’s credit reports. The funny thing is that in just five minutes, anyone can request a copy of their credit history and begin repairing, monitoring and building a cleaner report. Transparency is key and without access to a copy of your report – you are in the dark.
Veda Advantage are a credit reporting agency that can help you shed some light on your history. Here is how.
Who are Veda Advantage?
Veda Advantage is Australia’s leading credit reporting agency that is utilised by both lenders (to check up on you) and by consumers (to monitor and actively manage). They have access to your past and present history pertaining to any kind of lending or credit. This means they can view any kind of credit (loans) that you have and with whom.
This service is also utilised by lenders to report people for not paying, skipping payments or any other issues. It also records how many times you have applied for credit and been rejected (a key indicator to other lenders you might be trouble).
Veda Advantage offer a consumer product to check your credit file via their website mycreditfile.com.au
Why bother using Veda Advantage to check your credit history?
As stated above, you have no idea what your record states until you personally see it. It can hinder your ability to borrow money into the future which could have devastating consequences (think going for your first home loan or bridging finance while you move houses – will lenders still lend to you if your history is bad?).
How to proactively manage your credit file
Beyond simply ordering a free credit report or a paid credit report (for those wanting it sooner) – the best way to monitor your credit history is through Veda Advantage’s ‘My Credit Alert’ – a service that emails you every time something changes within 24 hours. This is perfect for those wanting to be aware of everything that is happening.
Example: I once had a major credit card provider fail to shut down my card after I requested it five times to their international call centre. They continued charging me annual fees and interest on those fees and ended up sending a default notice to my credit file. Completely unfair and something that could potentially hinder my lending ability in the future (because of a mistake on their part!).
An email alert would have told me this much sooner, which is why I now use the mycreditfile.com.au monitoring service.
Credit reputation is vital these days
Your reputation as a good standing borrower is vital in the modern day. Everything in life revolves around credit. Loans to buy cars, houses, education and more. A bad credit history could hinder your future growth and often simply because of the most trivial reasons (such as my credit card story above).
Identity theft is on the rise – how does this relate to Veda Advantage?
Identity theft is also on the rise. We aren’t talking people who act like you to simply buy alcohol as underage minors – we are talking people who assume your identity to take out fraudulent loans under your name and do a runner. Monitoring your credit report can also keep an eye on this kind of behaviour. How do you know if people are taking out loans in your name but with a different address? The truth is you wouldn’t. You would only find out once it was too late.
Veda Advantage offer a great service to dispute any issues
Another reason why I like Veda Advantage is that they offer a simple solution to dispute any gremlins you find on your credit report. This means you have a service available (for free) to state why something is either unfair or should be removed.
Recourse such as this is vital – no point finding gremlins and not trying to fix them.
Have you had any credit report scares like me?
We want to hear from you. Drop us a comment below to tell of your experiences. Did you get a rude shock when checking your history?