You may be surprised by the information in your credit history that goes towards calculating your credit score. You may be even more surprised by what personal information about you does not affect your credit rating whatsoever.
While credit reporting bureaus collect information regarding your history of borrowing and repaying money, do not record information regarding your:
- Political, social or religious beliefs or affiliations
- Sexual preference or practices
- Criminal record
- Lifestyle, character or reputation
- Medical history or physical handicap
- Income and bank balances
- Race, ethnic origins or national origins
Because only information recorded in your credit history can be used to generate a credit score, this means that the above factors play no meaningful role in determining whether you have good or bad credit.
Does checking my credit score affect my credit score?
You may have heard how when banks or other credit providers conduct a credit check, this can affect your credit score. Multiple credit checks over a short period are notorious for torpedoing credit scores, as multiple applications could indicate to lenders that a borrower is desperate for credit, and may be at higher risk of defaulting on their repayments.
However, checking your own credit score does not affect your credit score. That’s because when you check your credit score with RateCity or another similar service, we conduct a “soft” credit check. Because this isn’t a formal application for credit (a “hard” credit check), this enquiry isn’t recorded in your credit history, and thus doesn’t go towards calculating your credit score.
It’s often worth checking your own credit score regularly, as this can help keep you up to date with how lenders see you. You may also discover whether any inaccurate information is recorded in your credit file, or if you’ve been the unfortunate victim of identity theft – getting the facts straight may help to improve your credit score in the future.