How long it takes to update credit file information

Posted by Jamie Mackenzie Smith in Credit Reports on 16 January 2018

Time is usually of the essence when applying for credit, so making sure your credit report is in good shape before the lender sees it can mean the difference between a quick and painless application and a lengthy, drawn-out process.

Chances are there might be bits and pieces of info on your credit report that could do with correcting or working on to give you the best chance of your application being accepted, but in some cases it can take a little while before the changes are reflected on your report and are visible to lenders.

The time it takes for your credit report to start showing changes can depend on a number of variables including what the changes are, right down to what time of year it is. If you’re planning to apply for a loan, but think that changes need to be made to the information on your report, make sure you give yourself enough time before submitting your application to let the changes take effect.

How and when are my credit agreements updated?

In most cases, credit account information is updated on your report by your lender on a monthly basis, including changes to your balance and credit limit, plus the crucial record of whether you made your most recent repayment on time. This means your credit report will only be updated with this information once it has been received by the lender, so it’s quite usual for account information to seem out-of-date.

Some smaller lenders may pass on the updated info less frequently, so it could take even longer for these accounts to update on your credit report.

Any credit accounts that show on your report as closed will still be reported by lenders each month until they are automatically removed - even if there aren’t any changes. The exception here is where an account is defaulted and closed by the lender with an outstanding balance. In this case, any payments made to reduce the balance by way of a repayment plan should be reflected. The same applies if the debt is passed to a collection agency, where a new agreement is effectively created.

How long Electoral Roll registration takes

Lenders see your electoral roll information as a key piece of information, so being registered to vote can make a big difference to your ability to get credit. You are free to register to vote at any time, but the time it takes before it appears on your credit report varies.

For most times of the year, you shouldn’t experience a gap of much more than a month between you registering to vote at an address and it appearing on your credit file. If you’ve registered to vote before mid-month (there’s some variation in this, so it’s not the same for each month), you’ll usually be included on the following month’s published electoral roll information.

This should be the case if you register to vote between the months of January and August, during the rolling registration period, however registering to vote after this time falls into the annual canvas, at which point no monthly updates are published until the start of the rolling registration starts again in January.

Annual Canvass

The Annual Canvass period runs from August to the end of December and sees all local councils pass updated information to the UK’s main credit reference agencies – who in turn update their own databases. As a result, if you’ve registered to vote at any time during this time period, it will not appear on your credit report until January/early February.

Unfortunately, there’s nothing that can be done to speed up this process and if you’ve just moved house and are thinking about applying for credit, this key piece of information may be missing from your report for a while, which could impact your score. Lenders will check what information is recorded at your previous addresses too, and so may well match you on the electoral roll there.

Your checkmyfile credit report will show you how each credit reference agency is reporting your electoral roll status at your current and previous addresses. If you do find that you aren’t recorded at your current address, it’s an important omission to rectify, starting by finding out if you are actually registered to vote at your current address with your local council.

Removing defaults, CCJs & Negative Information

For many people, waiting for a CCJ, Default or Bankruptcy to drop off their credit file is a big deal. Serious adverse information like this is very likely to cause you problems when applying for credit, and its removal could make a big difference to both the likelihood of being accepted, and the interest rate you’ll be asked to pay.

Most negative information is automatically removed from your credit file six years after it was first lodged. There might be a small additional delay while the change is actioned, meaning that it can take a further month for a marker to actually ‘drop off’ a credit report.

Bankruptcy is slightly more complicated. Most bankrupts in England and Wales are ‘discharged’ after one year, but the record of bankruptcy will remain on your credit file for six years. Should you not comply with the trustee and do not get discharged, the record of bankruptcy could remain indefinitely.

How long does a credit check itself take?

The time it takes for a lender to check your credit report varies: If you’re applying for a credit card, current account with an overdraft or in-store finance you’ll probably be told there and then whether your application has been successful.

In some cases, further checks or verification will mean a delay of a couple of days. If you’re applying for a bank loan it can take anything between a few minutes and a few days depending on your relationship with the lender.

The main reason for the difference in the time it takes to get an answer is that there are different levels of check depending on what you’re applying for and who you’re applying to. These days most applications are automated, which is a quick process, but should the credit check flag up a Cifas entry or Notice of Correction in your name, the application will need to be manually assessed before it can proceed, which will make the process take that much longer.

As a general rule, if you’re tidying your credit report in advance of making an application, it’s usually best to make sure that the changes have been implemented on your account before you apply as the amends will almost always take longer than you would think.

Make sure you’re seeing the Bigger Picture

It’s important to remember that each of the UK’s main credit reference agencies receive data from lenders and update their own databases separately, and so it’s quite common for information to differ, depending on which agencies data you look at. Lenders will also see those differences.

Only checkmyfile uses data from four agencies together in one easy-to-read credit report, allowing you to compare what’s held about you in each place, and making it easier to spot any errors or omissions. Should you spot anything that you think is wrong, our team of professionally-qualified Credit Analysts can not only give you expert advice, but in many cases, dispute the information on your behalf.

If you haven’t seen your checkmyfile credit report, you can try it free for 30 days then £14.99 a month and you can cancel at any time online, by phone or email.

The Advantages of a Multi-Agency Credit Report

These days your Credit Report can be checked for any number of reasons throughout the year, including background checks during job applications, landlord checks and even from insurance or utility providers when you shop around for quotes.

Published on 17 May 2019 by Paul Anderson Riley

Full Article

What Lenders Want To See On Your Credit Report

Your Credit Report holds a huge amount of information about you and your past relationship with credit. It’s collated from a wide variety of sources, is always changing and plays a major part in any lending decision - but you shouldn’t be afraid of what it shows.

Published on 2 May 2019 by Sam Griffin

Full Article

What Credit Searches Mean

One of the most commonly misunderstood aspects of Credit Reports are the credit Search Footprints left on your report whenever someone accesses your file.

Published on 25 Apr 2019 by Kirstie Day

Full Article

How to dispute an account error on your report

Whether you’ve been turned down for credit in the past and have checked your Credit Report to make sure there’s nothing there harming your chances, you’re checking ahead of making an application, or you’re just looking to make sure everything is as it should be, there’s never a good time to find a mistake with the information on your report.

Published on 17 Apr 2019 by Kelly Luff

Full Article

Your Rights When Cancelling a New Credit Agreement

For most people applying for credit the main concern is whether or not they will be actually get accepted. But occasionally a change in circumstances (or even just a little time to reflect on your purchase) means that a bigger concern might be whether you can change your mind and withdraw from a credit agreement (be it a credit card, personal loan or other credit facility) after it’s been granted, potentially preventing you from taking on additional financial responsibility that you no longer want or need.

Published on 18 Mar 2019 by Tom Magor

Full Article

Creditworthiness and Affordability – Which is Which

When reading the small print on most applications for credit, you’ve probably noticed two words regularly popping up: Creditworthiness and Affordability. Both of these measures are used by a vast majority of lenders when assessing your application, so understanding what each one means goes a long way to explaining why you may or may not be accepted for credit.

Published on 22 Feb 2019 by Ben Tumilty

Full Article

What Information Is On My Credit Report?

If you’ve ever taken out a loan, credit card, or other form of finance, you’ll know that the difference between acceptance and rejection relies heavily on the outcome of what the lender finds when it checks your Credit Report.

Published on 4 Jan 2019 by Paul Anderson-Riley

Full Article

Can Right to Erasure Get Rid of Bad Credit History?

General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR for short) was introduced on 25 May 2018 and unless you’ve managed to avoid the internet and checking your emails completely for the past year, you’re likely to have been bombarded with messages from nervous sounding websites updating their data policies.

Published on 3 Jan 2019 by Jamie Mackenzie Smith

Full Article

Why Searches Can’t Be Removed From Your Credit Report

The Searches section of your Credit Report shows you who has accessed the information on your Credit Report within the last couple of years. This effectively acts as a log of when you’ve checked your own Report, as well as a record of lenders checking as a result of applications for credit in your name. You’re also likely to see searches relating to prospective employers, landlords, insurance companies and other identity checks.

Published on 2 Jan 2019 by Beth Jennings

Full Article

How To Take Out Credit When Overseas In The Armed Forces

It’s no secret that the number of the UK’s active military personnel is set to decline further between now and 2020, but of the 145,000 UK Regular Forces across the Army, Navy and Air Force in 2018, as many as 18,500 served overseas during that time. With the recent news that the Army will accept recruits from commonwealth countries as well, a further portion of our armed forces is likely to be based overseas in the coming years.

Published on 27 Dec 2018 by Jamie Mackenzie Smith

Full Article
keyboard_arrow_left

keyboard_arrow_right

We are rated number 1 for customer service on