10 Myths of Credit Scores
Is the concept of a credit report or credit score confusing to you? There is no way around it, every adult participating in contemporary societal life has (or at least should have) a credit score.
Perhaps you have a vague understanding of it, or maybe you do know the basic functions and workings when it comes to receiving a credit score. However, there are some less obvious facts as well as some widely believed myths about credit scoring that you should know, or dispel. Let us get down to it.
Common Myths About Credit Reports
Myth: You Cannot Dispute Items on Your Credit Report
Truth: If you believe certain information on your credit report is less than accurate or missing, you can always contact the lender or creditor in question. Alternatively, you can file a dispute with your credit bureau agency.
Myth: There Are Negative Impacts From Checking Your Credit Score
Truth: There are absolutely no consequences to checking your credit, in fact, we encourage regularly monitoring your credit score. It is always healthy to be on top of your finances, especially when you’re looking to apply for any loans or make a big purchase.
Myth: A Good Score Does Means an Automatic Approval for Credit Applications
Truth: A good credit score helps a lot, but banks and other creditors also look at other things before approving or rejecting your application. For example, your level of income plays a major part in whether you qualify for a loan.
Myth: Cancelling Credit Cards Help Build Credit
Truth: The whole point of a credit score is to rate your usage of credit. In fact, cancelling a credit card with a high credit limit might actually hurt your scores. Your score is calculated via your credit utilisation ratio, or how much you owe relative to your credit limits.
Myth: You Need to Carry Credit Card Debt to Build Credit
Truth: You need credit accounts that you use to build credit, but you should always pay off the balance each month. That’s the way to build up healthy credit and avoid accruing interest payments.
Myth: Parking Summons and Fines Impact Your Credit Score
Truth: Simply put, no they do not, although they may be sent to the credit bureau agency, they are not taken into account when giving you a score.
Myth: Your Personal Information and Marital Status Affect Your Credit Score
Truth: No they do not. Personal information listed on a credit report is limited to just your name, current and previous home addresses, NRIC number, your date of birth, and any other public information such as history of bankruptcy. Your reports also only pertain to you personally, not taking into account your spouse’s credit history, except for any co-signed accounts.
Myth: Late or Missed Payments Will Be Removed Once You Pay Off Your Debt
Truth: Not the case. Even after you pay off any credit debts, any previous late payments can remain on your credit report for up to 7 years from the date you missed payment. The simple solution is to always be on top of your repayment, plan your finances ahead and don’t miss any payment dates.
Myth: Credit Scores Only Matter When You Plan On Getting Loans
Truth: A credit score is not just a tool for banks to evaluate loan candidates, it can affect other parts of your life. For example, a prospective employer can pull your credit report (with your permission) to decide if they want to hire you. It may also affect the rate for your home rental deposits and insurance eligibility.
Myth: Your Credit Score is Universal
Truth: You can have multiple different credit scores, and they may all be calculated differently. Your creditors or banks may be reporting data to different credit bureau agencies and it could factor into different scores from different agencies.
How Can You Get a Credit Report
Our official partners at CTOS are one of the leading credit bureau agencies in Malaysia, head on to their site to pull your credit report.
Alternatively, when you apply for any service from IBPO Group Berhad, such as our i-Personal Financing product, we will help obtain your credit report to evaluate what services you are qualified for from one of our partnered banks.