Almost three quarters (74 per cent) of UK adult consumers are unaware of their current credit score according to a recent YouGov survey. In fact, over half (53 per cent) have never even checked their credit rating.
During Credit Awareness Week this week (March 12-16) a campaign to empower consumers to improve their financial futures, the research was completed in association with Experian, revealing the lack of credit awareness of the adult British public.
Drawn from a sample of 2,146 UK adults, the research also revealed that almost half (46 per cent) incorrectly believed that being registered on the electoral roll affected their credit rating. 39 per cent were also wrong in thinking that previous residents of their address with poor credit ratings could affect their own credit score.
Further confirming a lack of credit awareness, over a quarter of those polled believed that having a high income affected their credit score.
A strong lack of trust in organisations that they owed money to was also confirmed, particularly payday lenders who only 3 per cent expected to treat them fairly.
Mobile phone networks were the next least trusted with only 6 per cent, while local authorities fared best with trust from 27 per cent of those polled.
Despite the lack of credit awareness exhibited, 89 per cent said they would like to know the reasons if they were denied credit, while 79 per cent said they would like advice on how to be successful in the future.
Head of consumer affairs at Experian, James Jones, commented: ‘There’s still much room for improvement in public understanding of and engagement with credit ratings, but this year’s Credit Awareness Week survey includes several encouraging signs. If you’d suggested to me five years ago that a quarter of people would soon be able to tell you their current credit score I’d have thought you were delusional.’
He continued: ‘While many remain in the dark on the factors that affect credit scores and even on who makes the lending decision, things are moving in the right direction. So I hope Credit Awareness Week will help us keep the momentum going. Experian is certainly determined to help many more people take simple steps to gain more control of their financial future, such as by getting to know their own ‘data self’.’