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Consumers Should Keep 'Close Eye' On Credit File

Oct 7, 2007
Those looking to get a competitively-priced loan in the wake of the global 'credit crunch' should obtain a copy of their financial history, an industry expert has advised.

According to Jim Hodgkins, managing director of CreditExpert, prospective borrowers are increasingly struggling to access loans and other forms of credit as the majority of lenders become stricter with consumers' applications in a bid to make sure that they will be able to receive regular repayments. In addition, it was suggested that the five base rate rises actioned by the Bank of England's monetary policy committee (MPC) since August 2006 and many homeowners coming to the end of their fixed-rate mortgage deals means that a vast number of Britons could see pressure on their finances increasing as mortgage payments are to rise "substantially".

Mr Hodgkins also reported that although the MPC has chosen to maintain interest rates in recent months, the effect of changes in the global market will see loan lenders increase rates for "businesses and personal borrowers alike".

He said: "As the US credit crunch spills over into the British economy, we all need to keep an eye on our credit commitments and keep checking our credit report. If a mortgage provider has imposed even a quarter of a per cent rise, you could end up paying hundreds of pounds extra a month, which could push many into the red. If your credit report shows that you are not keeping up with your current commitments, you become an unattractive proposition to lenders as they do not want to be responsible for lending you additional sums you may not be able to afford to repay."

Consequently, he claimed that by keeping a close eye on their credit history prospective borrowers will be able to identify any discrepancies with the file and make sure that it gives loan lenders an accurate reflection of their financial standing when applying for a loan. Mr Hodgkins asserted that this was particularly important during the current economic climate of "high inflation and increased living costs".

In addition, the director suggested that the file can also provide consumers with an insight into their day-to-day spending. Stating that the document acts as a "snapshot of what you owe and how well you are managing your finances", he claimed that analysing a credit report can help consumers work out how much they need to spend on essential goods and the amount of disposable income left each month - which in turn could go towards a savings scheme for later life or servicing loan repayments to help "weather the credit storm".

Earlier this year, Stephen Rose, director of the Debt Advice Bureau, reported that loan borrowers should make sure that their finances are always in a position to cope with any unexpected demands. The director stated that the majority of Britons develop debt problems after an unforeseen change in circumstance such as illness. He added that those taking out a loan should take the time to ensure that they are aware of the full terms of their borrowing arrangement.
About the Author
Abbi Rouse writes for AllAboutLoans.co.uk, an online loans comparison site, visit us today for information on all loan topics including secured loans UK applications and home loans from all leading UK providers
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