Many people are not aware of what a credit file is, or whether they have one.
Anyone who is or who has ever been ‘credit active’ has a file in their name.
Veda Advantage, Dun & Bradstreet or Tasmanian Collection Service (If you live in Tasmania) are the three main credit reporting agencies in Australia, who share information. Any one of these will have your file on hand if you are credit active.
The information on this file includes:
Date of Birth
Driver’s Licence Number
Credit enquiries: Your credit file contains a detailed list of every time in the last 5 years you have applied for credit, it contains when, how much, with which company and what for.
Loans: Any current loans are recorded
Defaults: Any accounts in default of more than 60 days. Any overdue accounts that have been paid are then listed as paid and the date the default was fixed. If the lender believes the debtor has decided not to pay the debt it will be listed as a Clearout Listing – these remain on your file for 7 years.
Dishonoured Cheques: Any dishonoured cheques over $100.00 which were presented more than once.
Judgements: Any court judgements, writs or summons you have been involved in.
Bankruptcies: All bankruptcy orders, which includes Part IX Debt Agreements.
It is from this file that creditors make a decision whether on not to lend you money. This information is then available to banks and building societies; finance companies like GE and Avco; mobile phone companies and retail stores like Myer, Harvey Norman and Wow Sight & Sound. These companies are all known as credit providers.
If there are any blemishes on your file, it is highly likely credit providers will decide against lending you money.
For more information on removing bad credit listings from your credit file, visit www.MyCRA.com.au or phone 07 3124 7133 for free information and advice.