Everything you wanted to know about your illion credit report
Your illion credit score is a number between 0 and 1000 that tells any potential lender how reliable you are as a borrower. This then helps them estimate the level of risk when offering you a loan.
There are multiple credit reporting agencies in Australia that can analyse your financial history and present it to you in the form of a consolidated report. One such credit reporting agency is illion, a body that measures data and provides analytics products as well as services.
Like most credit agencies, illion gathers and keeps a record of the credit history of individuals and businesses. They then use this information to generate detailed credit reports and credit scores. Individuals and businesses alike can then assess their creditworthiness or that of their potential customers while conducting significant financial transactions through these reports or scores.
What is an illion credit report?
illion offers numerous financial services, including providing consumers like you with a free copy of their credit report and credit score.
An illion credit score indicates how creditworthy an individual is, and also how likely they are to pay their bills and fulfil their dues on time. The illion credit report, on the other hand, contains all financial information about your loan enquiries, bill payments, loan defaults (if any), court judgments and any outstanding credit, including mortgages and credit cards.
Doing an illion credit check gives you an individual score that draws a comparison to indicate how you fare against others. Rest assured, requesting your credit score and credit report through the illion credit check doesn’t impact either document.
What constitutes a good illion credit score?
An illion credit score range is a number between 0 to 1,000 and indicates how lenders view your creditworthiness. Most people’s scores lie between 300 and 850, but the higher your score, the better your credit rating is.
A number above 500 is generally considered to be a good score. This makes you more eligible for better offers from banks, insurance companies, phone and internet providers, and utility companies.
- Zero score
A zero score is mostly a younger Australian who has no credit history as yet.
- A low score: 1-299
A score in this range means your file possibly has some negative data, say payment defaults, poor payment history or bankruptcy. A high number of credit enquiries, especially recent enquiries for small amounts, could also put your score in this range.
- Room for improvement: 300-499
This range doesn’t necessarily imply a negative history. It may reflect a younger person, who is considered to be risky by most lenders since they have a shorter credit history and lenders are unable to gauge their creditworthiness. There is also a possibility that your history has a record of credit applications to smaller lenders who provide services to higher-risk customers.
- Good: 500-699
This score could indicate that there isn’t much information about your credit history. Or it could be that your good history with a current provider has not been reported as yet. The score could also be affected by your age or where you live since credit scores generally increase with age.
- Great: 700-799
If your score is within this range, it means that you must have maintained a good payment history. However, there could still be a few credit enquiries or loan applications on your file.
- Excellent: 800-1,000
This range is often observed among older individuals who have exercised discipline with credit applications and maintained any repayments well. They could possibly have a mortgage and could have invested in property as well without failing to make repayments.
- A low score doesn’t disqualify you from borrowing altogether. It may just mean some lenders charge a higher interest rate or place more restrictions like a lower loan size on your application.
How does illion calculate my credit score?
Your credit score is primarily dependent on how reliable you are at paying your bills and other financial responsibilities. Individuals who consistently pay their bills on time will often have a higher credit score than those who are prone to frequent late payments or not paying bills at all.
Here are events that could impact your credit score negatively:
- Not paying your bills
- Late payments on bills
- Applying for credit and being rejected
- A partner who defaults on joint debt
Is it possible to improve my illion credit score?
If you’re disappointed with your low credit score and are looking to improve it, here are a few suggestions from illion:
- Check for the accuracy of all the information on your credit history.
- Look for events negatively impacting your score and fix those.
- Set up automatic transfers to pay all repayments (credit card, home loan and personal loan) and bills on time.
- Arrive at a payment plan with your credit provider or collection agency to comfortably pay any outstanding debt.
- Reduce credit and spending habits to build a good history of paying back debts.
- Establish a budget, shift to a prepaid mobile plan and save up money to buy items rather than relying on credit
How can I view my illion credit report?
If you want to see what’s on your credit report, you can get your hands on your illion free credit report by:
- Visiting the website
- Emailing email@example.com
- Calling 1300 734 806
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Personal Finance Editor
One of RateCity's Personal Finance writers working across the site, Jodie has worked for banks and comparison websites for a number of years, writing articles across Sharesight, Finder, and other places. Now, Jodie spends her time working on ways to make money make sense for everyone else.
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What are some advantages of a good credit score?
You should know about the advantages of credit score improvement as there are many occasions when having a good score is helpful. If your credit score is categorised as good, very good, or excellent, it can indicate you have strong borrowing power. This may encourage lenders to give you special discounts on interest rates and other loan terms. You may also find it easier to get approved for a credit card or a property rental. You can also try to negotiate terms using your superior credit score as leverage.
A high credit score indicates that you are financially responsible, but it requires you to be disciplined. If you currently have a good credit score, you still need to remember not to apply too often for credit cards or loans as these can quickly pull down your score. On the one hand, you may have better access to credit, but your good financial habits mean that you may not need to access this credit. Having some credit products can help build up your credit report, and therefore your credit score. You would just need to keep the debt and limits to a minimum and pay the bills on time. It’s never advisable to take out credit that you can’t afford to pay as it negatively impacts your credit history. Even if you have a good credit score, you can always improve it further.
Why should I check my credit score annually?
You may not need to get your free credit rating every year, but it can help you stay informed. A yearly free credit report can help Australians keep track of the impact of various financial transactions on their credit score.
Your credit score helps inform financial organisations, particularly lenders, about the sort of payer you are. Depending on how you've paid down debt in the past, it will have affected your credit score in various ways. In Australia, the inclusion of Comprehensive Credit Reporting (CCR) means that you can find out which transactions affect your credit score positively, as well those that have a negative impact.
Because of this, you may want to consider getting a free credit report once a year irrespective of whether you’re planning to apply for a loan or take on other debt. Checking your credit report can tell you if there are errors in your credit file, which affect your credit score and need to be corrected.
Where can I check my credit report for free?
While you can get a free credit report in multiple ways, RateCity's own credit checking system allows you to find your score from two credit history systems, Experian and Equifax.
When you request your free credit report, you'll likely need to supply some personal information, such as your name, contact details, and a personal identification, such as a drivers license number or another form of identification.
Not only does a credit report show credit score, but it usually often contains positive and negative credit transactions covering the past five years of payments.
Does a credit score check impact your credit score?
You may have heard that when a bank or lender performs a credit check, that it can impact credit score. But checking your own credit score isn't the same, and won't affect your credit score in the same way.
There are two types of credit checks that can be recorded in your credit history: hard credit checks and soft credit checks.
Hard credit checks occur when you apply to borrow money from a bank or lender, such as when you apply for a credit card or loan. A soft credit checks occur when your credit file is accessed outside of applications to borrow money, such as when you check your own credit score or credit history.
Checking your credit score is a request for information and not an application to borrow money, so it should not affect a lender’s decision to accept or decline your credit applications. As such, it's a soft credit check, and is unlikely to affect your credit score, positively or negatively.
Does borrowing money affect credit score?
Whether it’s through a home loan, a personal loan, or a credit card, borrowing money will affect your credit score. Taking on a home loan or a credit card may have a positive impact on your score, but too many loan applications can bring your credit score down.
Every time you apply for credit, an inquiry is performed against your name. Too many inquiries can reflect negatively on your credit report, and if your loan application is rejected it will negatively impact your credit score.
How you handle your debt can also make a big difference. As long as you make timely payments you may be able to improve your credit score and overall creditworthiness. However, any missed or delayed payments will likely result in a negative impact on your credit score.
Do landlords check credit scores?
For landlords, credit score checks can tell if a potential tenant has a history of delayed or missed rent payments. Usually, a poor record of repayments is likely to result in a low credit score. Also, your credit history may include information from tenancy databases such as the number of times landlords have inquired about your credit score.
If there are too many inquiries within a short time, landlords may conclude that you have had issues renting in the past. However, there is no rule as to when landlords check your credit score. Some might check every time they receive a tenant’s application. In some cases, landlords may even rent out their property to tenants with a poor credit history if they can submit additional documents or sufficiently explain their situation and how they are trying to address it.
What credit score do landlords look for?
Landlords may look for issues relating to repayment rather than a specific credit score, although a low credit score probably suggests that you’ve had repayment issues. In general, if your credit score is categorised good, very good, or excellent - which corresponds to an Equifax credit score range of 622 - 1,200, landlords may not scrutinise your credit history too closely.
How regularly does your credit score change?
There are plenty of things that can affect your credit score, but when they'll impact it can vary wildly, and often depend on when the information has been passed on.
Every credit enquiry is noted on your credit file, and this impacts your credit score. Thanks to Comprehensive Credit Reporting (CCR), it means you both positive and negative transactions can impact your score, but so, too, can the frequency. For instance, if you apply too often for credit cards or apply with multiple lenders for a home loan and aren't successful, you may see a decline.
How long this information take to pass on is an important question, but the length of time often depends on the credit reporting agency. Some transactions can take a small amount of time, while others take much longer. For that reason, it's important to check your credit history regularly so you can be more aware of what your credit score looks like, and if you need to correct any of the statements made on it.
What is a good credit score?
Across Australia's major credit score providers, Experian and Equifax, there are five tiers, ranging from "below average" to "fair" to "good", "very good", and "excellent", with your score designating where you sit. As the tiers suggest, an Experian credit score between 625 and 699, and an Equifax credit score between 622 and 725, is technically considered to be in the range of "good". Anything above this is even better.
However, lenders will typically favour the borrowers with the highest credit scores which means that applicants with a "good" credit score may not be offered an interest rate as competitive as one offered to a borrower with a "very good" or “excellent” credit score.
What if your credit score has dropped for no reason
The importance of checking your credit score regularly is hard to overstate as the changes may not be as relevant to your life, and there may be the occasional error, but what should you do if it drops for no reason?
Credit reporting agencies calculate your credit score based on the information they receive from lenders, banks, credit card providers and utility companies, among others. This report takes into account both the credit enquiries these companies make, as well as your payment history with them, and may include other factors. But because some reports may come in at different times, delays can appear like drops.
Suppose you missed paying a bill while on holidays and the supplier couldn’t reach you, or something like it -- in this instance, the provider may report the default to the credit reporting agency, which can cause your credit score to fall when the credit reporting agency eventually sees the information. Because of an obvious delay, the drop can seem random.
Regularly checking your credit score and the transactions that have appeared can provide some understanding as to why a credit score drop might have occurred, and even provide some understanding as to how you can fix the drop, improving your credit score in the process.
What can impact my credit score?
Your credit score isn't set in stone and can change with every financial decision and action you take. While you checking your score is a soft check and won't impact the result, payments and other actions can affect the score.
The very things that can impact your credit score include your payment history (late or on time), the age and type of credit you have and owe, your debt balance (both current and delinquent, if any), recent payment behaviour, the credit available to you presently, and if you have any court judgements or actions resulting form bankruptcy.
Australia's Comprehensive Credit Reporting (CCR) also tracks your positive payments, and allows your credit score to be impacted positively, as well.
Can a bad credit score affect rental applications?
A landlord may check your credit score to work out how trustworthy you are, and whether you'll pay your rental obligations on time. So, can a bad credit score cause you to miss out on renting property?
When looking at your credit score for rental applications, landlords may not see a low score as a reason to instantly reject applications. Some may be more generous, and could be willing to consider a tenant with a lower credit score, or even request some form of additional deposit to act as security against possible future problems.
Alternatively, you may want to consider asking a guarantor to co-sign your lease, which gives the landlord peace of mind as they have an alternate payment source if you cannot make payment.
Can a debt collector affect your credit score?
When a creditor is unable to contact you by phone or by sending you a formal notice in regards to outstanding debt, they will often outsource the job to a debt collector. The debt collector can try to reach you by phone, or they can attempt to contact you face to face. If they cannot get through to you by either method, they can only report back to the creditor but not directly report a payment default to the credit rating agency. So, can debt collectors affect your credit score? No, they cannot do so directly.
However, if you owe money, you have an obligation to return it or communicate your difficulty in doing so to the creditor as well as to any involved debt collector. If they cannot contact you, they can report a serious credit infringement against you, which may affect your credit score for many years. Creditors can also take the legal route, and a court judgment against you can also severely impact your credit score.
You should remember that debt collectors need to abide by specific rules and cannot harass you by repeatedly calling or visiting you, or by threatening to confiscate your possessions if you don’t pay up. Similarly, they cannot threaten to file a default against you, especially with a credit bureau.
Does breaking a lease affect your credit score?
When you sign a lease, you’re agreeing to pay rent for a certain period. But what happens in case you need to break the lease midway? Does breaking a lease affect your credit score?
If you’re planning to break a lease early, you might be required to give a certain amount of notice, pay two months' rent and an early termination fee, or you should be willing to forfeit your security deposit.
If you’re able to pay all dues before moving out, breaking the lease is unlikely to affect your credit score. However, if you leave without paying, your landlord could use a collection agency to collect any unpaid rent. Your landlord could even sue you, and if you lose, you may have to pay the dues and court costs. While landlords typically don’t report unpaid rent to credit bureaus, there’s a possibility that a collection agency will report it. Collection mentions can stay on your report for several years and may affect your credit score.
Furthermore, breaking a lease could create issues when you're looking to rent in the future. A future landlord could contact previous landlords or check your rental history, and any mention of a broken lease could make you appear as a high-risk tenant, putting the rental application at risk.
Does home loan pre-approval affect credit score?
Home loan pre-approval can give you a better idea of the amount you can spend when buying a property. It can also tell you about the steps you need to take to finalise your home loan and receiving the funds. Depending on how you approach a lender, pre-approval could include a credit inquiry which does affect your credit score. Some lenders, however, may offer an online pre-approval which is faster and doesn’t involve a credit history check. An online pre-approval may only consider your financial capacity and offer suggestions on how to prepare yourself to take a home loan.
Most lenders, however, will likely prefer to make a full assessment of your financial situation by requesting a credit report in addition to your bank statements and tax returns. Such a credit inquiry, sometimes called a hard pull, is usually recorded on your credit file and can therefore affect your credit score. If you approach several lenders and all of them initiate credit inquiries, this will impact your credit score negatively. Sometimes credit reporting agencies make an exception in terms of including multiple credit inquiries if they are made within a certain period. It would still be best to avoid making multiple applications with different lenders.