My Credit Journey Part 4
Well here we are in July, in the middle of Summer, although by the cloud and rain you would be forgiven for thinking we was still in Spring. Still, I have kept up with all of my repayments, I still have several defaults showing on my Credit Report and this has still stopped me from being able to get approved for any further lines of Credit. I attempted an application with Aqua (New Day) but once again despite a fairly positive response on the application (by being told my card would be at 49.9% apr) I received a letter declining me.
Still I won't give up, all of my defaults are due to fall off next year and I have kept up with all of my repayments without a single missed repayment now for several years and things surely will improve soon. Well, I did get one surprise. Early July 2016, I logged in to see my Capital One Credit Card balance, I attempted (as I do at least monthly) to increase my Credit Limit via the automatic Credit Limit Increase option.
For the past 6 months, this has been leaving me a message on screen to call them as they need to know about my income, I did this once but was told a letter would be posted. The letter did arrive thanking me for my request but also pointing out they wasn't able to increase my limit at this time.
Anyway, early July I tried once again, this time I was greeted with a pull down box allowing me to select a new limit ranging from £350-£550. My Capital One Credit Card started back in 2008 with a Limit of just £100, it was one of those cards that was promising an increase on the 4th statement as long as you didn't miss any repayments or exceed the credit limit. I did just that and my limit was increased to £300, that is where it's been for over 7 years, so to finally get an increase, even of just £250 is a sign they are seeing an improvement to my attitude of credit.
That would be something I have possibly learnt through this entire process, when things were really poor I attempted to try and change things by applying for new products and trying to rebuild my credit quickly.
Things have obviously improved especially in the past 6 months, I haven't really tried for lot's of credit, my Equifax shows 0 credit searches in the past 12 months, (not so good on Credit Expert) this one shows 6 searches in the past 6 months, that would be me trying my luck with Aqua card and opening a new Current account with Tesco Bank.
The Credit Card Eligibility Checker is now showing me as 80% approval for the Barclaycard Credit Cards, these are the Prime Cards like the 25/25 card and Barclaycard Freedom card etc, 80% does sound positive, but I am not going to try, rejection is such a deflation to what I am trying to do.
I won't stop in my attempts to get back to being Credit Worthy again. It's well documented that Credit Defaults are bad, some claim that they still managed to get Mortgages, Loans and Credit Cards with them, but for many, me included, this hasn't been the case. In fact, it's been several years now of being rejected for pretty much everything
My o2 Contracts and EE contracts are now finishing. I was totally surprised to get these back in 2014 (if you have read the Credit Journey) and it was a good feeling to call EE and cancel the first of my 2 lines with them. Of course they did attempt to keep me connected, but I stayed strong, I was only ever using this as a way to improve my credit rating and it appears to have done some good.
Some people say the numbers Credit Reference agencies provide mean nothing, after all they don't lend money, but they are a great indication to how potential Lenders will see you in the future. I score Poor on Equifax (and Improvement) on the Very Poor I once did.
I now score 572 on Credit Expert but have actually been as high as 670 before my applications reduced the score. I even flirted in the Fair section for a small period.
As of now, I still have my Virgin Mobile, EE Contract, O2 Contract (all being paid up to date)
I have the following Current Accounts (Tesco Bank, TSB, Lloyds and Halifax)
I still have my Gold Credit Card from APS (cash plus) this still has a £100 limit, I have attempted to increase this limit, as such if by November 1st this isn't increased I will be closing this down as this wont be doing any good for my Credit Rating anyway.
My Capital One Credit Limit was increased from £300 to £550 (by my request) in the Online area, my Eligibility Checker chances have improved, but the most important thing is within 18 months all of my defaults will have gone. At this point, one hopes my Credit Journey will really start to improve