What's your number?

How your credit score can impact your borrowing power.

A survey has revealed more than 14 million Australians don’t know their credit score.

Your credit score is a number based on analysis of your credit file that helps lenders determine your creditworthiness. It’s used by banks and other credit providers to determine whether to lend you money, how much they will lend you and may influence your interest rate.

Finder Personal Finance Expert Kate Browne said all Queenslanders should know their number.

"Your credit score is a vital sign of your financial health and could see you turned down for a home loan or personal loan,” Ms Browne said.

"It's hard to believe 14 million Aussies don't know their score – after all, lenders and banks certainly know your score, shouldn't you?

"As lending has become stricter following the Royal Banking Commission, it's important to find out what your score is. That way if it's not in the best shape, you can take steps to improve it." 

You can check your credit score for free using the national credit reporting bodies (CRBs) listed on the Office of Australian Information Commissioner’s website. 

You can also check your full credit history by ordering a free copy of your credit report once a year. You’ll also receive information about the factors that are affecting your score.

These factors will help you to understand changes you can make to start improving your credit score. If you suspect the information on your credit report is incorrect, contact the CRB you got the report from or the credit provider listed in your report.

Tips to improve your credit score

  • Pay all your bills on time, including rent, utilities, phone bill as well as credit cards and loan repayments. If you’re behind on payments, bring them up to date as soon as possible. 
  • Consolidate or pay off outstanding loans and debts.
  • Keep your credit card balance low.
  • Apply for and open new credit cards only as needed.
  • Dispute any inaccuracies in your credit report.