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Advice? It looks like I won't be accepted for a credit card and I've no idea why?

(21 Posts)
northernerinlondon Mon 11-Jul-16 13:23:16

Hey guys, first time poster here! Hi _

So I'm not really financially minded, and could do with a bit of advice.

I'm luckily in the process of buying my first home (mortgage offer in place, hoping to exchange this week).

Turns out there's SHEDLOADS of stuff to buy immediately, and rather than waiting and sleeping on the floor whilst we save up, or making the purchases from our potential deposit pot, money savvy friends have said "noooo, get a 0% credit card for those bits!"

I've done a soft search to check my eligibility , and it's come out super low!! Like a 30% acceptance rate...but they don't say why?!

I hate the idea of applying, only for them to do a brutal credit check (knocking my score down further), only to be rejected and then have an even lower chance of being accepted by another lender.

Bit of background:
I'm 28, never had a credit card or store credit, and been in full time employment since graduating 8 years ago.
I've moved house quite a lot (i.e. once per year between shared houses).

I'm unsure as to wether it's just bad timing (i.e. immediately after a mortgage application), or if I've inadvertently shafted myself by moving house one too many times...

If anyone could shed some light it would be much appreciated - I'm of the "fear credit cards like the devil" gang, so I'm reluctant to apply without knowing the repercussions first. blush

Thanks in advance!! flowers

karalime Mon 11-Jul-16 13:28:40

I've been rejected before because I was not registered to vote at address I was staying at.

Get an experian credit check and see what comes up.

BarbaraofSeville Mon 11-Jul-16 13:48:29

If you're in the process of applying for a mortgage, I would hold off applying for a credit card until the mortgage has completed.

The mortgage company will make last minute checks and the credit card application may reduce their assessment of your creditworthiness and if you were borderline to them, it might end up in refusal of the mortgage.

I would wait until after the point of no return for the mortgage company (I don't know if this is exchange or completion) and then apply for a credit card - it's probably best to wait until you are on the electoral roll in the new house in reality.

Does your own bank do any decent credit card offers or interest free overdrafts - they might be more accomodating as they know your financial history. Or do the shops you are looking to buy from do interest free credit? That seems to be quite easy to get.

But will you be able to easily afford these new purchases once you are paying a mortgage?

Horehound Mon 11-Jul-16 13:51:45

I think it could be because you just had a huge whack of money put on your credit report (the mortgage) and so now your report will be "poor" and no credit agency will offer a card.

You can sign up to Experian for a free trial (just remember to cancel) or they also have a statutory £2 report you could get.

It could also be that you've never had credit so they have nothing to compare against. If you have electricity or gas accounts/mobile phones bills etc should all be on there so if you've never missed a payment - all should be well.

akkakk Mon 11-Jul-16 13:55:37

- If you have never had credit
- have not had a mortgage
- move house regularly
- are about to move house very soon
- do not own your own house

how does a credit company know how to score you?
it is very difficult to know how trustworthy you will be in paying back credit if you have never shown previously that you can do so - tie that in with house moves and I would say that you are high risk...

to have a good credit rating you need to show a good track record of borrowing and paying back - paying regularly without default etc...

now is not a good time with the mortgage going through, but once in the house consider taking out a loan - paying back a few months then paying it back in full and early (check for no penalties for early repayment) / look for a credit card, but pay it off in full every month / etc. you will also find that your credit rating is improved by owning a house (mortgage / gas / electricity / phone bills - all paid on time)

do some searching on how to build a good credit rating - generally it either involves millions in the bank, or showing that you can be trusted with credit and will repay it - which means taking out credit...

you can find lots of help on the Money Saving Expert forum (MSE), and you can get a free short term subscription to Experian (to see your credit record), or Noddle is free for life at a basic level

northernerinlondon Mon 11-Jul-16 14:18:34

This is brilliant, thanks lovely people!! I'll be posting all of the time now grin

I've always had bills in my name and paid them off, but I think you're right Re: moving house too often having thrown it off.

I also used my Experian free trial to check my score before applying for the mortgage (it was excellent then, which was only 6 months ago!).

I'm going to take your advice and hold off from applying until we're exchanged and completed, and I'm not inadvertently risking the mortgage offer.

In the meantime I think it will be a whole lot of making do and going without. I'll just count myself lucky I'm even in a position to buy a home, let alone have a bed/sofa/carpet right when I want them.

lljkk Mon 11-Jul-16 14:23:52

I couldn't get a credit card because I'd never had a credit card. Or any debts. And most the household bills I'd helped pay off were in someone else's name too. It was the absence of data that ruled me out of every card.
I finally got an AMEX (£45 annual fee back then) just so that I could establish a credit record.

lljkk Mon 11-Jul-16 14:25:33

ps: or become the 2nd named person, a joint credit card with someone else. This was the other way I got a credit card (different country) & started establishing a credit history.

It's so annoying when you're a student you get constant almost free money loan offers, then I stopped being a student, started earning good money, and nobody would loan me anything.

LowDudgeon Mon 11-Jul-16 14:28:26

There are some credit cards designed for people with poor credit - they come with a low spending limit & high interest but if you use one carefully for a few months that would help you a lot.

have a look at moneysupermarket

LilacInn Mon 11-Jul-16 14:30:23

I know this will sound prissy but "making do and doing without" will be your friend in the long run.

What happens if you run up a big bill at 0 percent and then can't pay within the required timeframe? Illness, accident, job loss, etc. - people think they won't happen but they do.

There is a certain creative joy to furnishing and decorating a house on a budget. As well as to saving up, and purchasing what you need without pressure and with a clear conscience that you are not digging a deeper hole for yourself.

I admit sleeping on the floor would be grim but what are you sleeping on now? Won't that do?

I bought a house in my mid-30s and sat on a rickety used futon for 2.5 years while I saved up for a beautiful sofa and armchair - which 15 years later still looks brand-new because I shopped for quality. And you'd be surprised how a little paint can pull together a suite a secondhand furnishings.

Not everyone enjoys charity shop decor or "flea market style," I realize, but if you can force yourself to make do for a few years you will be grateful down the road. And I am hard pressed to think of "shedloads" of things to buy immediately, perhaps a new shower curtain for sanitary reasons and that's about it.

Freecycle and the like can be useful too.

HeadDreamer Mon 11-Jul-16 14:32:59

As for stuff to put in your new house. What are you thinking off? How much money are you talking about? Will you be able to get £1-2k added to the mortgage to get the stuff you must get now? When we get our first place from a furnished flat, we get a mattress, a fridge and a washing machine. Everything else can wait! There are also free stuff on freecycle and gumtree. And ask around work and family. Older people might have furniture they don't need anymore.

And like others say, you should be able to get a credit card once you've started paying your mortgage.

HeadDreamer Mon 11-Jul-16 14:35:44

BTW, I agree with LilacInn about not using a credit card for stuff. But I'm not sure what your income is like. And how fast you'll be able to save up for the bits you'd need.

HeadDreamer Mon 11-Jul-16 14:38:03

perhaps a new shower curtain for sanitary reasons

blush oh dear we didn't get new shower curtains

northernerinlondon Mon 11-Jul-16 15:39:09

I feel a little foolish now! I promise i'm not an I-want-I-need type.

...although I'm definitely guilty of getting a bit too excited to move in and make it home, and found myself willing to dive headfirst into waters I know nothing about, all so I could get there faster. Lesson definitely learnt.

The main things are:

A bed (admittedly we do have a mattress to put on the floor)
Sofa, likewise we can cope without for a while.
Wardrobes...I'll try get a rail from eBay/Gumtree

Then there's the little things like getting the bedroom carpet in before putting in fitted wardrobes.

I'm by no means in a tight spot - I was just surprised to hear of this so-called magical solution that seemed infinitely better than my 'buy one item per month, as and when we can afford it' approach.

Now I've read your thoughts, I think I'd rather feel safe and keep the mortgage as my only worry grin

HeadDreamer Mon 11-Jul-16 16:03:19

In that case, you should definitely wait till you move in before making a decision. The first thing you might need is probably not a fitted wardrobe!

It might be things like power sockets. Are they all in the right place? You'll want new sockets put in before re-decorating. Then after that, it'll be painting the walls before getting in the carpets.

Admittedly, my first house has a fitted wardrobe. It's very stiff and hard to slide however. We make do with it for 6 years when we sold the house. Most people don't stay in their first house for very long. So maybe a set of ikea PAX is better value for money in the longer run.

LilacInn Mon 11-Jul-16 19:17:13

Yes, it is thrilling and I understand the desire to start making it your own.

But honestly taking a couple of years to make major decisions slowly helps avoid mistakes. You need to get a feel for the house for quite some time.

The only thing, and I mean the ONLY thing I have regretted being prudent about, in all these years is refinishing the hardwood flooring. I wish I had borrowed the $$ from my parents to do that before moving in. Waiting a couple of years meant a big hassle to clear the roofs for the work.

I also found that my attitude changed after living with things for a while. The olive green bathroom tile I didn't like now seems the perfect background for the other items I've selected to give my bathroom a spa-like feel. Had I radically changed the room I would be sorry now.

And also it's nice to savor "the thrill of the hunt." Visit shops, antique sales, IKEA or whatever aesthetic you prefer, etc., keep a notebook of items you wish you could purchase as seen in magazines and the like, be aware of prices and sales. I assure you the journey of doing all of this and refining your personal decor style and DIY skills is a lot more fun than the destination of having everything perfect and settled.

good luck!

Goldrill Tue 12-Jul-16 17:31:22

I think that's a good plan, but it might be handy to have a credit card at some point soon - first for emergencies and second to improve your credit score. I have one I use for some small things each month, to a maximum of 30% of the credit limit, and always pay it off in full. I always actually have the money in the bank to pay it before I spend on it.

northernerinlondon Fri 15-Jul-16 17:43:42

Sorry for the delayed reply guys. I don't know how anyone with a full time job manages to sort out the admin on this house buying lark - felt like I've spent a year on the phone to First Direct!!

I'm so glad I wrote this post - I've done a total turnaround and decided the excitement of the house is enough to make sleeping/sitting/storing compromises seem a breeze.

Waiting and adding as you go is what making a home is all about, not the immaculately kitted out, perfect-within-a-day set up I thought I needed.

Thanks again guys, you're the best xxxx

Barmaid101 Wed 20-Jul-16 09:58:02

It's amazing what you can pick up on gumtree and Facebook selling sites. This is what we did and then slowly replaced everything to make it our own. For wardrobes we just got some rails from Argos so we could hand things. My dad did the same just now as he moved to somewhere without built in wardrobes. Two for £15 and you can fit a lot on them.
Also always worth a look in bargain corner at IKEA. We have had some great bargains over the years from there

Jenijena Wed 20-Jul-16 10:01:37

Have you come across noddle? It's free credit reports. But I agree, slow and steady will be more fun in the end... Enjoy your new home

TheWildOnes Fri 22-Jul-16 08:19:56

There is a credit score app called clearscore, it's free and it lists the good points and bad points to your file. When applying for mortgage I was told my credit score would have been better if I had ever had loans/credit cards.

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