Australians, no matter who they bank with, can now access their credit report and score for free with NAB.
NAB Chief Customer Experience Officer Rachel Slade said the initiative, a first by an Australian bank, would empower consumers to better understand their financial position and start a healthy conversation about money.
“For many people, logging on to see their credit score can be overwhelming and daunting as they don’t know where to start or what their score means,” Ms Slade said.
“At NAB, we wanted to remove the fear factor and have created a solution that will not only give Australians access to their score for free, but also provide tailored insights on how to improve it.
“This is all about changing the way we feel about our finances and making checking your credit score something that is positive and empowering.”
Ms Slade said the bank did not want to limit this to NAB customers and had joined forces with illion-owned business Credit Simple to provide the service to all at nab.com.au/credithealth
“No matter who you bank with, you can jump on the secure website today and check your score as often as you want, free of charge and see it change in real time,” Ms Slade said.
“Our hope is this will help Australians no matter their circumstances. From those saving for a home to wanting to borrow for the dream family holiday or just wanting to know where they stand with their finances – this is a gamechanger.”
Creditsimple.com.au CEO David Scognamiglio said it was pleased to partner with NAB on this important initiative and was excited for more Australians to know just how easy it was to check and improve their credit score.
“The good thing about knowing your credit score is that you can actively work to improve it, but the first step is knowing what it is, and then knowing how to change it,” Mr Scognamiglio said.
“Paying your accounts on time might seem obvious, but it’s important to understand that missing a payment can impact your record and hold you back from achieving your financial goals.”
Mr Scognamiglio said credit scores became increasingly important following the expansion of Comprehensive Credit Reporting (CCR) in September this year.
“Until the take-up of CCR, banks could only judge how much to lend based on their ‘negative’ credit score – for things like missing a credit card repayment. Being on top of your finances by paying credit cards or car loans on time were never included, but they have been from September,” Mr Scognamiglio said.
“NAB’s Credit Health Tool will give consumers the power to change this and we congratulate NAB on becoming the first major bank to roll this out nationally – it’s a big deal.
“Australians can be assured that accessing NAB Credit Health won’t negatively impact their credit score, that signing up won’t provide NAB access to their credit information and that all data is protected using industry best practice technology and processes.”
To obtain your free credit score and report today, visit nab.com.au/credithealth
What is a credit score and what does it mean?
A credit score is a number between 0 and 1,000 that indicates how creditworthy you are and how likely you are to pay your bills on time. Most credit scores are between 300 and 850. The higher the score, the better your credit health.
Top tips to improve your credit score:
- Make sure you pay your accounts on time
Until relatively recently only your ‘bad’ financial behaviour of late or missed payments showed up on your credit score. But changes to the system mean both your good behaviour, as well as bad, is recorded. Therefore, the easiest thing to do is ensure you have your accounts up to date and keep them up to date. A consumer who has a good track record of paying for a credit product on time is likely to keep doing that.
- Minimise your applications for credit
Shopping around for a new credit card or home loan can save you money. But applying for too many of them can actually lower your credit rating. If you’re constantly applying for small loans or have a lot of enquiries on your file within a short time period, this will negatively impact your score. For example, applying for many credit cards within a few years is not ideal.Data shows that consumers who constantly apply for more credit end up significantly more likely to default.
- If you’ve defaulted, pay it up
A default will stay on your file for five years regardless of whether or not you pay it, but if you pay it off, it will reduce the negative impact. Over time the impact of defaults will reduce. If you’ve got two or more unpaid debts then this will impact your score, as well as not paying on time.
Budgeting is key to financial success, taking the time to sit down and map out your commitments and goals can help you improve your credit score.
Credithealth.nab.com.au is hosted and operated by Credit Simple (Australia) Pty Limited ABN 14 614 444 790 and Australian Credit Licence 513554 (Credit Simple) (which is part of the illion group of companies). The information in the Credit Health Report is provided by illion Data Registries Pty Ltd ABN 38 101 620 446 (illion), a credit bureau in Australia, and is not shared with NAB. Any application to NAB for credit is subject to NAB’s credit approval criteria.