Ask James: latest credit questions answered

James Jones

James Jones

Every month Experian’s James Jones answers a selection of your questions about credit and fraud in his ‘ask the experts’ style column here.

Sultana from Ilford wants to register her 17-year-old for a credit report but is unable to – James explains why this is so, and what they can do next.

Bianca from Tunbridge Wells wants to know if her library fine will affect her credit score, while Alan from York has a row of U’s on his credit report and asks Will the status code U on my credit report damage my score?

Anne-Marie from Newcastle-under-Lyme has this question: Can changing bank accounts have an effect on my credit score?, as she wants to apply for car finance later in the year.

See the previous Ask James: questions about claiming benefits and credit rating, changing from PAYG to direct debit, and more.

You can find more Ask James questions answered in our Ask James archive.  If you have a specific question and can’t find an answer here or you wish to contact us to query something on your credit report, please contact us – find all the ways you can contact us here.

16 thoughts on “Ask James: latest credit questions answered

  1. Jonathan

    If you have a late payment on your credit report and you’ve been paying on time how long does it take for your credit score to start going back up

    1. CreditExpert Neil

      Hi Jonathan, it will depend on what other information is also recorded on your report as to how quickly your Experian Credit Score will start to recover. If there is only the single late payment then we would expect your score to start to increase again once the next monthly payment is made and the account is back up to date again. If there are several late payments then it will take longer for the score to recover.
      For more about improving your score is available here. Kind regards Neil.

  2. Favour Asante

    Hi James, a default has recently been removed from my file but my score still remain the same and that Was The only default that was on my credit file. May I ask what will happened next please is this not supposed to have increase my score from 578 to higher score?
    Thanks Favour

    1. CreditExpert Stuart

      Hi Favour,

      It’s a good question to ask after having a default drop off your report.

      When it comes to the Experian Credit Score, the score is essentially based on all of the information which is listed on your Experian Credit Report at the time.

      Because of this, it is possible that even when a default is no longer listed on your report, as the impact of the default would have reduced over time.

      If you want to look at ways to improve your Experian Credit Score, you might find this guide to be helpful.

      Alternatively, if you contact us, our team will always be happy to help you out and answer any questions you may have. You can find all our contact details available here.

      Kind regards,

  3. Daniel Johnson

    You have mentioned defaults Have less impact on your score the older they become, at what point does this affect your score, for example will my credit score increase when default is at the 4 year mark, basically is the specific date mark it will have less impact, or will it only improve once 6 years is up and removed.
    Also, when a default is removed will a credit score go up if you still have other defaults on file??
    I am asking because I have 2 coming off in next few months both payed off and this will leave me with 2 from TSB which will come off in 2019 both payed off also, my credit score is a few points of good at 868, I have 9k available on credit card with a 0 balance and no other debts apart from mortgage, but I am hoping to buy bigger house and will require new mortgage, do you think I would be accepted with the defaults. No missed payments in last 4 years and earn approx £38k.
    Thanks in advance for answers

    1. CreditExpert Neil

      Hi Daniel, your Experian Credit Score is calculated from all the information on your credit report. So it is not possible to say at what point the default will have less impact as other information on the report will also be influencing that.
      If all your defaults are removed from your report and you have no other delinquent accounts recorded then we would certainly expect your score to increase. However if there are other more recent late payments recorded this may not be the case.
      If there are other defaults recorded then having one default removed would be unlikely to make a difference to your score.
      It is always up to the lender as to what decision they make, and they will also take into account earnings and deposit in their decision making.
      Kind regards Neil

  4. Stuart clifton

    Hi, my partner has a default account showing on her credit report. The balance figure is showing as £0 and the monthly history is showing that the for the past few months a nil balance although there was a balance showing before this. The lender is though still writing to my partner requesting payment for the default account. Why is it showing as a zero balance on the credit report and does this mean she still owes the debt or not? If she doesn’t pay it could the lender make an application for a CCJ? Thanks

    1. CreditExpert Neil

      Hi Stuart, it is possible that the lender has sold the debt to a collection agency. The debt could then be marked as satisfied with the original lender on your credit report but still be outstanding with the debt collection agency.
      If the debt is still outstanding then a CCJ could be recorded if it is then taken to court. The company the debt was originally with should be able to tell you if they have sold it on or not.
      Kind regards Neil.

  5. Dionne

    I’m needing a gaurentor for thd property i want to rent, and the gaurentor has a fair credit on her file, do you think this will get her though the check and pass?

    1. CreditExpert Neil

      Hi Dionne, sadly we are not able to say whether this would be acceptable for the property you want to rent, as it will be up to the company themselves as to what they are prepared to accept.
      kind regards Neil.

  6. Lilly

    Hi James,

    I have made a balance transfer from my credit card to another card with no interest. Can I use this card for transactions?

    1. CreditExpert Neil

      Hi Lilly, it would depend on the terms and conditions of the credit card, but in most cases we would expect that you would be able to use the card for transactions as long as it is not up to its limit. Different interest rates may apply for transactions than the balance transfer so you may want to check with the card provider.
      Kind regards Neil


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