Credit scores are a way for lenders to determine how much of a ‘safe bet’ you are when it comes to borrowing. They’re a crucial factor if you want to successfully obtain credit – whether that’s a mobile phone contract or credit card, or even a car loan or mortgage. No matter the amount in question, a lender will want to examine your credit history to see whether you fit with their lending criteria.

As such, it’s important to keep an eye on the information held on you by the credit agencies that lenders use. In addition to showing you whether you stand in good stead for that next big purchase, your credit report can also alert you to modern day security worries such as identify theft.

Take a look at this site preview and check your credit scores with a 30 day trial. Should you be concerned that your credit score isn’t as good as you’d like, these five simple steps can help you get it back on track:

Check and Double Check

Rather than just looking at your scores, go through the report with a fine toothed comb, to make sure that it’s accurate. If there are any missing or late payments showing, cross reference them with your records as mistakes can happen.

Remove Inaccuracies

If you do find any inaccuracies on your report, investigate. Is it a mistake or could there be something more sinister such as identify fraud to blame? Contact any companies, lenders or credit agencies that you don’t recognise on the report and get more information about the transactions. If they shouldn’t be on your credit file, then you can take measures to get them removed.

Sever Toxic Financial Ties

Our past relationships, and financial relationships, can link into our own credit file so make sure that you are not financially connected to anyone with bad credit. Look closely at members of your household and how you are tied to them financially. Even sharing bills with a housemate could have a negative affect, so try to keep your finances as separate as possible in order to maintain maximum control over your own credit history.

Deal with Debts

If you do have outstanding debts, don’t bury your head in the sand – deal with them. The National Debtline offers free and confidential support for anyone with money worries or debt difficulties.

Get ‘Good’ Credit

It’s possible to help a credit rating with ‘good’ credit, which means taking out a credit card or some form of credit, but being sure to make consistent and timely payments. This helps build a positive credit history.

Good or bad, your credit scores shouldn’t be ignored. Make sure that you’re aware of the information held on file about you, and take simple steps to get your credit score as high as possible for easier lending.