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Will previous tenant’s adverse credit history sully my name?

Dear James,

I am considering moving into a property, which has obviously had a bad tenant in before. I understand that credit ratings are linked to properties and people, and am concerned that my good credit rating could be affected by a bad previous tenant. Am I right to be concerned and is there anything I can do to ensure I am not affected if I do take the property on? Hope this makes sense. Thank you.


Sarah, Sheffield

Dear Sarah,

Your e-mail makes perfect sense, but I’m pleased to say your concerns are completely groundless. While credit checks were once upon a time based on addresses, this hasn’t been the case now for many years. As a result, financial information registered about other people at your current and previous addresses can only show up on credit checks made in your name if you and the other person have a financial link. These links are created when you apply for or take out joint credit with someone else, if one of you acts as guarantor for the other or if you declare a financial relationship exists. It’s very unlikely any of these apply to you and a former tenant – who I’m guessing you’ve never even met – so I feel very confident assuring you that you have absolutely nothing to worry about. If you want written proof, assuming you do move to this property, apply for a copy of your credit report and check it for details of past tenants. You won’t find any – and neither will your lenders!

James Sign

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