As a financial publisher, Credit Strategy has launched the Credit Awareness Week campaign to empower consumers to improve their financial futures. It’s being run in association with Experian and held between 12 and 16 March 2018.

What are we doing?
We’re trying to convince lenders to give consumers better, clearer information, when they refuse a consumer’s application for a mortgage, loan or credit card.

With this guide, we are providing simple steps to help people understand their credit score and take simple steps, to improve it. We also want to debunk the myths we uncovered in a survey of consumers about credit scores and how decisions are made by lenders over whether to accept applications for mortgages, loans and credit cards. The guide is designed to help consumers help themselves. Ultimately, we’re trying to help you get the best possible deal, when you apply for a loan, mortgage or credit card.

We’re also providing you with a toolkit that takes you through simple steps for what to do next, when your application for a loan, mortgage or credit card has been refused.

We’re also launching other campaigns during Credit Awareness Week:

Debtor rehabilitation
We have worked with the Registry Trust, which collates information on debt judgments, to ensure that when consumers try to repay their debts after being sent a court order, their efforts are recognised properly.

When borrowers receive a county court judgment for a debt, and then pay all or part of that debt to satisfy lenders, lenders will now be encouraged to notify the Registry Trust that the debt has been ‘satisfied’. This will in turn help borrowers who’ve made genuine attempts to repay their debt, improve their credit rating, and borrow at more affordable rates.

The Registry Trust believes this change will help 100,000 improve their credit rating.

Affordability
We have worked with StepChange Debt Charity and the Money Advice Service, by tabling an Early Day Motion in Parliament during Credit Awareness Week.

This motion calls on the government to give a commitment that the public sector will follow a new affordability measure called the Standard Financial Statement, when government and councils collect overdue tax and other debts from individuals.

Debt advice organisations have been concerned for some time that public sector creditors such as HMRC and local authorities have taken a harsh approach at collecting arrears payments from those who are over-indebted.

Now you know what this is about, get cracking on improving your credit score.

If you’ve already checked and improved your credit score, check out our Credit Score Myths Debunked. There are some classic clangers in there – don’t get caught out.

If your application for a loan, credit card or mortgage, or even a mobile phone contract, has been declined, check out our toolkit for what to do next. Did you know you can challenge the lender’s decision?

  1. Improve your score
  2. Credit scoring myths
  3. Declined credit? What’s next?