Covid 19 Status

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.

Application Search

What is an Application Search (Hard Search)?

An Application Search (sometimes called a hard search) is carried out on your credit report during a genuine application for credit, as opposed to an Enquiry Search, which is used when you shop around for credit and get a quotation.

Each time an Application Search is carried out on your file, it leaves a Search Footprint, which will remain visible to both you and lenders for 12-24 months (depending on the Agency) from the date of entry.

Contrary to popular belief, these searches do not automatically damage your credit score or your chances of getting credit, but an unusually large amount appearing on your file in a short space of time could trigger a fraud warning, as it looks like someone desperately trying to take out credit in your name.

Most people accumulate around a dozen Application Searches a year on their credit report. Having no trace of any searches on your credit report at all gives rise to suspicion that a person may not be experienced in handling credit – known as being ‘credit inactive’ – and their absence can have an adverse impact on your ability to get credit in some circumstances.

Experian call their searches ‘CAPS’ which stands for Credit Application Previous Search, and this is where the shortened term ‘Application Search’ is derived from.

Q: What can be seen as part of an Application Search?

A: Application searches show both your public and your credit information, which means whoever is carrying out the search will be able to see how you've managed credit in the past as well as details such as your name and address history

Q: How do they appear on my credit report?

A: You can see all searches carried out on your credit file by clicking the Searches tab at the top of your checkmyfile credit report. If you haven’t already, you can try checkmyfile free for 30 days and then for just £14.99 a month afterwards, which you can cancel online at any time.

Q: Who can carry out hard searches?

A: Most commonly a hard search will appear on your report as a result of applying for a loan or credit card, but they may also happen when you take out a mobile phone contract or start using a new utility provider. In rare instances using comparison sites can even lead to a searches appearing on your file.

Though it may be hidden in the small print, you will need to give your permission before anyone can carry out a search of your credit file.

Jargon Buster

Use the links below and the resulting list of terms on the right to locate the term you are looking for. If you can't locate it, please get in touch.