GuidesCredit Report Guide
SocietyOne's Credit Report Guide
Discover how credit reports work in Australia, what information you can find within them & how you can access your own report for free with SocietyOne.
8 min read
Want to know more about your personal finances? One way you can see your credit history is to view your credit report or file. Your credit report contains your credit history and is made up of a range of personal information and repayment details for credit accounts you’ve previously applied for.
Understanding your credit report will give you the upper hand when applying for credit in the future as you will know whether the lender will view your application in a positive or negative light. In the past, uncovering information from your credit report was a time-consuming task. Now, with SocietyOne, checking your credit score takes a matter of minutes and will not affect your current credit score.
What is a credit report or file?
A credit report, sometimes called a credit file, is a record of your credit history. Your credit file contains important information that lenders will use to assess your application for a loan, such as credit cards you’ve applied for, accounts you may have defaulted on, any personal loans or home loans you may have, as well as any information about you that is publicly held, such as court judgements.
What info is included in my credit report?
Information about you, including your name, date of birth, your current address, your current job and driver’s licence details.
Information that is public record
Any information that is publicly held about you, including court writs, court judgements, bankruptcy or personal insolvency agreements.
Consumer credit information
Any credit applications you’ve made in the last five years, whether they were approved or disapproved, as well as:
- The type of credit account held
- The provider you applied with
- The amount you applied for
Information on any defaults you may have on your accounts
Joint applicant information
Information on any loans or credit cards taken out as a joint borrower
Current credit liabilities
Any current credit accounts in your name and:
- The date these accounts were opened and/or closed
- The credit limit or loan amount
Monthly repayment history
History of repayments on credit accounts, such as home loans, personal loans and credit cards, showing whether you have met the minimum repayment amount required each month.
SocietyOne partners with Experian, an official Credit Reporting Body (CRB) in Australia, to provide you with your credit score and information. The credit information presented by SocietyOne is an extract of your Experian credit report, based on what SocietyOne believes to be the most relevant information for you. This information has been packaged and translated into easy-to-understand insights so you can learn exactly where to improve your score to increase your chances of getting credit approval or a better deal.
How long is this information held on my report?
In order to get a complete view of your credit history, information regarding your payment history will be kept in your credit report. Below is a table outlining the general length of time certain information about you will be held on your credit report:
|Personal Information||Type of Information Held||Number of Years Held|
|Payment History||Monthly repayment history on account.||2|
|Overdue accounts listed as default.||Overdue accounts of $150 or more that have been unpaid for 60 days or more.||5|
|Overdue accounts listed as a serious credit infringement||Overdue accounts that are in default where the lender has not been able to reach you for six months or more. Will be listed for five years if paid, seven if left unpaid.||5-7|
|Writs and summons.||A court summons or writ in your name.||5|
|Credit enquiries||Applications made in your name to utility companies, banks or lenders for services or credit products.||5|
|Bankruptcy/ Insolvency information||Bankruptcy information will be removed from your file two years from the date you are discharged OR five years from the date you became bankrupt, whichever is later.||5|
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Credit Enquiries & Repayment History
A credit enquiry may be included in your credit report if a lender conducts a credit check on you when you are applying for credit. This will be listed on your credit report as a credit enquiry.
A credit enquiry may include:
- The date you applied for credit
- The type of credit you have applied for
- Whether you are a sole or joint borrower
- The amount of credit requested
Credit enquiries can impact your overall credit score negatively depending on the type of credit applied for and the number of enquiries made. One of the biggest things you can do that can negatively impact your credit score is making lots of applications in a short period of time. This will result in a number of credit enquiries appearing on your credit report. A better way to shop around for deals without impacting your score is to request a rate quote. Get a rate estimate without affecting your credit history with SocietyOne. You can also check out loan rates and fees from SocietyOne and other websites to compare before you apply.
Defaults on your credit file
A default is reported by your credit provider or lender and will be listed on your credit report if you have an overdue debt of $150 or more that is more than 60 days overdue. Before listing your account as having defaulted, the lender must send two written notices to your home address, with the first letter requesting payment and the second outlining an intention to list the payment as a default.When looking into your credit application, credit providers will look at applicants with a history of overdue accounts unfavourably, so it’s important to keep on top of your repayments. Defaults can stay on your credit file for five years, even if you have paid back the overdue amount in full. If you pay back the overdue amount, the status of the default will be changed to paid, but the default will remain on your file.
What should I do if I have questions or see something that is not looking quite right?
From time to time, people may find something on their credit file that doesn't look quite right. For example, the information may not match your profile or some accounts or credit information may be missing or duplicated. Incorrect information on your credit report can affect your credit score, so it's a good idea to follow up any questionable entries and ensure your credit information is up to date. You can:
Contact the provider
The fastest way to clarify your questions or raise an issue is to contact the credit or utility provider directly.
Contact the credit reporting bureau
They may be able to contact your provider on your behalf. Usually, you can speak with the dispute resolution team or follow the correction process.
Contact a financial counsellor
They can assist by providing relevant information, support and advocacy
Contact the relevant Ombudsman service for assistance
They can help you contact your provider to investigate your requests.
Contact the Office of the Australian Information Commissioner (OAIC)
Lastly, if all of the above steps fail, you can contact the OAIC to rectify your situation. It’s important to note, however, that you only have 12 months from the date you became aware of the incorrect information to file a complaint.
How do I get my credit report?
Want to know where you stand financially? Get your free credit report with SocietyOne and find out your credit score today. Knowing your credit score can save you money and get you a better deal. Reach your financial goals and know more before you apply for a personal loan. Once you have your credit score, why not try our personal loan rate estimator to see what your monthly repayments could look like.