More and more companies, such as utility providers, phone operators, & credit card providers, are quick to put a mark against our names and affect our ability to get credit. In many cases, this is done without our knowledge! An example of this would be if you were to move banks and your direct debits were not transferred correctly (it happens a lot). As a result, your credit card payment did not go through. This will be marked as a ‘status 1’ on your credit file and could prevent you from being able to get a mortgage.
The credit referencing agencies (Experian, Equifax & Call Credit) collect information about us and our commitments, such as credit cards, mortgages, loans, electoral role info, etc. They keep a record of how well we maintain these commitments and apply a ‘Credit Score’ according to this information. Lenders then pay for and use this information when deciding who they do, and do not, lend money to.
If you have a history of keeping up with your payments and don’t over-stretch yourself, you are more likely to have a good credit score, than someone who has missed the odd payment or defaulted on any of their commitments.
So in short, if you’re thinking about getting a mortgage, you should check out your credit file.