How to improve your credit score in 2018: 8 ways to a better credit rating

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How to improve your credit score in 2018: Here's eight ways to improve your credit rating report and score for students this year.

Find out your Credit Score for 2018 for free

First things first is to find out your credit report. There are a number of websites that will offer you a free trial, including Experian and Equifax - just make sure you cancel before they take payment!

Website Noddle on the other hand is completely free although its reports are not quite as detailed as the others.

Make sure everything is right

Once you've got a hold of your credit file make sure that there are no problems or issues, especially wrongly claimed late or defaulted payments.

If there any issues you should first contact the company involved before adding a Notice of Correction to your file. If you're still unhappy, you can complain to the Financial Ombudsman.

Get some credit

The biggest problem for a student's credit report is not having any credit at all. If you're in this position, take out a credit card to help build up your credit history. Don't take cash out and make sure you pay off any balance. You can even cut it up you want to, simply being approved for some credit in the first place will help you build up your credit score.

Get on the electoral role

Make sure you've registered to vote in your local area else you may find it IMPOSSIBLE to get credit. You can do it online at

Get up to date on bills... and stay on top of them

If you have any issues with late payments or debts, try your best to get on top of them before spending money on anything else. Lenders can be quite amenable so talk to them about coming to an agreement to pay off any balance you owe.

Going forward into 2018, make sure you say on top of your bills and up to date on any payment plans.

NEVER take out pay day loans

Pay day loans are seriously nasty for your credit report regardless of whether or not you pay them off, especially when it comes to getting a mortgage. Sure, that's not something you'll be thinking about just yet but the impact of a pay day loan could be felt on your credit score for years to come.

Close unused accounts

Having access to too much credit may also harm your score so request to close any open but unused accounts. You may be surprised about how much credit you already have and be totally unaware of, such as that offered by store cards such as Next and Debenhams.

Pay upfront where you can

Where possible, for example car and home contents insurance, pay upfront rather than by monthly. Not only is this always cheaper and will avoid interest rates, it'll mean the companies involved don't have to add a mark on your credit report.

About the author: Thomas Brella

Thomas Brella is the founder of Student Hacks, starting the website in 2013 while studying at the University of Brighton to share tips and tricks on life as a cash-strapped student. He's now spent over 10 years scoping out the best ways to live on a budget

More on: Living Money
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