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In line with HM Government requirements to fight the spread of Covid-19 we have measures in place to ensure that we protect our staff, their families and the wider community, but also to ensure that there is minimal disruption to our customers.

Your access to online Multi Agency Credit Reports, Expert Help and Account Management remains unaffected. We take great pride in the support that we provide to our customers and throughout this period will do all we can to minimise the impact on our services. While the country remains in lockdown we will continue to support your queries via a dedicated and experienced team that will be securely working from home, and supported by a Management Team that will continue to be based at our head office and who will be able to provide customer support as required.

The security measures that we have in place to protect your Personal Data, in line with our Privacy Policy, will mean that some elements of our personalised support are affected during this period as our support team will be working with anonymised data when working remotely. Freephone access to our Credit Analysts has been removed during this period while we focus our efforts on continuing to reply to all of your emails and secure messages within one working day.

Thanks for your understanding, and we hope to have full customer support available as soon as possible and wish you well during these challenging times.



Does the Electoral Roll matter during Covid-19?

Posted by Richard Catlin in Electoral Roll on 19 May 2020 - Richard is Marketing Director at checkmyfile.

The Electoral Roll has long been a vital and established component of every Credit Report and that remains true today, even in the midst of the unprecedented coronavirus crisis.

In the current climate, your presence – or lack thereof - on the Electoral Roll probably comes a long way down the list of priorities for many people, especially with both house purchases and rental moves having ground to a halt.

But with the first phase of lockdown restrictions being lifted in mid-May and the property market itching to get back to life, it feels like an apt time to highlight again the important role that the electoral register plays in getting approved for credit.

Things will, eventually, settle down to whatever the new ‘normal’ is. That should mean that people can move house, buy cars and generally use credit facilities like loans and credit cards for things that make life better, rather than simply to help with ‘getting by’.

When that happens, not only is the importance of being on the Electoral Roll going to move up that list of priorities, but there is also likely to be something of a rush to do all the things that have been on hold – and those people that get things sorted sooner rather than later will be the ones that find themselves able to press ahead that much faster.

What’s changed in 2020?

Traditionally, there is a set process for when and how updates to the Electoral Roll are administered.

The Annual Canvass – where local councils pass updated Electoral Roll information to each of the Credit Reference Agencies – takes place between August and November, with the agencies themselves typically completing the upload in the first month or so of the new year.

The timing of the coronavirus breakout and subsequent national lockdown came a few weeks after the update had been completed and so there should be no impact on listings relating to the main update.

The main difference this year is how the Rolling Register (the means by which the Electoral Roll database is maintained between annual updates) is being managed.

In a typical year, people are moving house, and therefore needing to update their Electoral Roll listing, all the time. That sees information pass from local councils to Credit Reference Agencies on an on-demand basis. Basically, if your details change, you can inform your local Electoral Registration Office of your new address and that will find its way onto your Credit Report, usually within a couple of months.

The restrictions placed on both the property and rental markets by the UK lockdown mean that the number of people needing to update their details will have been considerably lower, but at the same time, the processing power behind the updates has also been severely limited.

Updates have generally been limited to online, with no walk-ins, limited phone coverage and no postal forms being sent out.

The May 2020 elections have also been postponed, meaning that the usual uplift in registrations will be missed this year. The December 2019 general election is likely to have resulted in a large spike, but most of these will have occurred after the Annual Canvass.

The upshot is that in the short-term at least, there are potential delays in getting listed on the Electoral Roll and increased scope for errors and omissions.

What about now that people can move house again?

It seems that as soon as the restrictions were lifted in mid-March, people jumped at the chance to be able to move house again almost immediately. Property portal Rightmove reported a 45% increase in visits on the first day that viewings were permitted again.

The number of people applying for mortgages has also spiked, suggesting that the uplift in property details being viewed is going to translate into more than just tyre-kicking. Each one of those mortgage applications will involve the lender checking the applicants presence on the Electoral Roll as part of the credit check.

With so much more scope than usual for people to not show as a current resident at their current address, there is also a greater chance that applications will be declined because of it.

What can I do to check everything is correct?

The key thing to remember is that there isn’t just one version of the Electoral Roll when it comes to your Credit Report and what potential lenders will check.

There are four Credit Reference Agencies in the UK that report Electoral Roll information as part of your Credit Report. Each updates and maintains its own version separately, and so it’s quite possible to see differences, depending on which you check.

The only way to be sure that you are correctly recorded across the board is to check for yourself. Only checkmyfile shows data from all four agencies together in one report, allowing side-by-side comparison and a single point of contact should you need to dispute or get advice on any element.

You can try checkmyfile free for 30 days, then for £14.99 a month. You can cancel easily whenever you like, online and without fuss.

Am I On The Electoral Roll? How to Find Out

With the recent conclusion of the Electoral Register’s annual update, it’s vital that you ensure your Electoral Roll information has been added correctly to your Credit Report.

Published on 24 Jan 2020 by Tom Magor

Full Article

How do I change my address on the Electoral Roll?

A letter from your local council reminding you to register to vote and asking you to confirm that your details are correct for 2019/2020 should have been delivered some time ago.

Published on 22 Jan 2020 by Sam Griffin

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Not just a vote - The importance of the Electoral Roll

Research undertaken by credit provider Aqua found that only one in five adults between the age of 18 and 24 is registered on the Electoral Roll. More worryingly, it also found that none of those surveyed believed that the absence of this listing could impact a credit application.

Published on 16 Jan 2020 by Paul Anderson Riley

Full Article

The Current Status of This Year's Annual Canvass

If you registered or submitted changes to your Electoral Roll listing towards the end of 2019, the updated information should now be appearing on your Credit Report.

Published on 5 Jan 2020 by Paul Anderson-Riley

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Electoral Roll: Leaving it to the last minute

The recently confirmed December election is causing a stir for a few reasons. It’s statistically unusual as the first December election in nearly 100 years and the timing has raised questions among voters, previously unconsidered at this time of year, such as ‘how do I register to vote’, ‘when is the deadline’, and ‘how do I check that I’m registered?’

Published on 8 Nov 2019 by Sam Griffin

Full Article

Keeping your electoral roll up-to-date after moving house

Few things in adult life are more stressful than moving house. The planning, the packing and of course the last-minute panicking about paperwork. Even once you’re in, mountains are quickly made from molehills and before you know it, you’ve lost those tiny keys for the windows – never to be seen again.

Published on 14 Jan 2019 by Ben Ryland

Full Article

Electoral Roll - The Annual Canvass 2016

Your Electoral Roll entry is one of the most important elements of your credit file. Lenders place a lot of weight in the presence of an active Electoral Roll listing and can decline applications solely on the absence of this information if it is not returned on a credit search.

Published on 16 Dec 2016 by Tom Blandford

Full Article

Only 7 days to register to vote

I doubt that I’m the only person to feel that the news surrounding the EU Referendum is overwhelming, confusing and more than a little biased. But whilst you try to make up your mind about whether to stay in or leave the EU, there is one thing that is certain – you’ll need to be registered to vote at your home address.

Published on 1 Jun 2016 by Kelly Luff

Full Article

Service voters and the Electoral Roll

Whether you choose to exercise your right to vote or not, everyone is required to register on the Electoral Roll in the UK.

Published on 7 Mar 2016 by Ben Ryland

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Annual Canvass 2015 – make sure you register

Not registered to vote at your current address? If you are being declined credit then this may have something to do with it – so what better time to resolve this than the 2015 Annual Canvass.

Published on 16 Sep 2015 by Ben Tumilty

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