Understanding Your Credit Score

Do you know your credit score? If you don't, you're certainly not the only one.

In fact, a recent statistic found that 73% of Aussies don't know their credit score. That’s more than 14 million! Nearly 1 in 10 (6%) of adults didn't even know what a credit score was, and 7% were too scared to check.

There are several reasons why the majority of Aussies might not know their credit score. One of the most common is that credit reports and scores can simply be very confusing.

Considering that your credit score is one of the most critical numbers in your life, we want to change that.

That's why, at Jacaranda Finance, our goal is to help 1 million Australians improve their credit scores by encouraging positive credit behaviour and, above all, helping the average Aussie understand this topic more.

So, whether you're looking to improve your score or just want to know more about them in general, we might just have the answers you need in this guide to all things credit!

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Boost Your Credit Score With Jacaranda

Check your eligibility

Worried about being denied a loan? No stress! At Jacaranda, QualifyCheck lets you check if you qualify without affecting your credit score!

Comprehensive Credit Reporting (CCR)

Making all your repayments to us on time could steadily improve your credit score and positively impact your ability to get credit in the future.

Some's credit score improving thanks to our CCR

What is a credit score?

A credit score is a numerical representation of the information in your credit report. Lenders and credit providers use it to assess your creditworthiness and reliability as a borrower. 

Generally, your credit score will range between 0 and 1,200. However, this can vary between credit agencies. The lower your credit score, the riskier you could be viewed as a borrower when applying for a credit product (and vice versa).

The following table breaks down what your credit ranking is likely to mean.

RatingCredit Score
‘Excellent’853 - 1,200
‘Very Good’735 - 852
‘Good’661 - 734
‘Average’460 - 660
‘Below average’0 - 459
*Please note: These scores are based on Equifax's rating scale.

What is a credit report, and how is it different?

A credit report serves as an extensive record of your credit history, providing a detailed overview that goes beyond the basics.

The information contained within your credit report is reflective of both your historical and current financial activities. In addition to your credit score itself, your credit report should include the following:

  • Identifying details (such as your name, date of birth, etc.).
  • Details of credit facilities you've used in the past.
  • A history of your repayments, including the amounts and whether they were up to date or overdue.
  • Records of any approved temporary or permanent financial hardship variations.
  • Records of credit applications you've made.
  • Listings of any defaults, bankruptcies, debt agreements and court actions (such as default judgements).
  • Instances when you have requested a copy of your credit report.

Where can you find your credit score?

Whether you're applying for credit or not, it never hurts to know your credit score. Checking your credit can tell you a lot, and contrary to popular belief, this doesn’t actually hurt your score at all.

Your score may be lower than you first thought, which means you'd probably want to try to improve it. Or maybe you have errors or inaccuracies on your report that need to be removed.

Either way, you can pretty easily check your credit score online. All you need to do is verify your identity and provide other personal information if necessary.

There are several main credit reporting agencies in Australia, primarily Equifax, Experian, Talefin and illion. You can check your credit score for free as often as you like from these agencies, as well as more minor, third-party services like Credit Savvy.

If you want a bit more detail, you can also check your credit report for free every three months.

Check your credit score with Jacaranda Finance

Jacaranda Finance customers can now check and monitor their credit score for free every month. If you currently have an active loan, simply download the FastMoney app using the links below and follow the prompts to check your credit score today.

How is your credit score calculated?

Your credit score is calculated based on a number of factors. The main credit reporting agencies listed above all keep a record of your credit accounts as well as personal and financial details, which they use to calculate your score.

Each of them uses a different formula when calculating your credit score. Still, generally speaking, it will be calculated based on the following factors:

  • Your repayment history.
  • The type of lender you’ve applied with.
  • Your number of recent credit applications.
  • The amount of money you’ve borrowed.
  • Any defaults, personal insolvencies (such as Part IX Debt Agreements or Bankruptcies) and court judgements.
  • Regularly applying for balance transfers.

And more.

No impact on your credit score!

Check if you qualify with Jacaranda Finance

Every time you apply for credit, a credit enquiry may be created on your report, which can cause your credit score to drop.

People who get rejected for a loan they’ve applied for often fall into the trap of applying for another one straight away. This can result in multiple credit enquiries in a short timeframe, which can damage your credit score.

At Jacaranda Finance, you can check if you qualify for one of our loans before you apply without affecting your credit score! This means if you meet our (non-credit report related) eligibility criteria, we'll let you know on the spot. You can then choose to move forward and apply with confidence.

If you don't qualify for a loan with us, your credit score won't be impacted in any way.

How can you improve your credit score?

If you have a less-than-perfect credit score, your chances of accessing the finance you need may be hindered. 

Though some people may not believe it, improving your credit score is possible. While you can't take back financial mistakes made in the past, there are changes you can implement to stay on top of your finances and improve your credit score in the future.

If you want to improve your credit score, check out the following Jacaranda guides to doing just that!

Can I get a personal loan with bad credit?

A bad credit history is any credit history that stops you from getting the loan you need from a particular lender. A bad credit loan is a term used to describe a type of loan for people with a less-than-ideal recent credit history. 

We don’t really like to use the term ‘bad credit’: it isn’t a technical term, and you’ll find that the major credit bureaus only ever use terms like ‘below average’ to describe people with low credit scores.

At Jacaranda, we don’t specifically offer ‘bad credit loans’; we offer fast and reliable loans for applicants with varying credit histories. When we assess your application, we do consider your credit history. However, we also take into account your current financial position by considering factors like your income, your expenses and how you're handling your current financial commitments. 

We understand that people make mistakes, but a financial mistake you made years ago might not accurately represent how you are with money today.

How Comprehensive Credit Reporting (CCR) can help

Improving your credit score can be challenging and time-consuming. It can also be a vicious spiral. That's where we come in.

Jacaranda Finance is reporting data under the Comprehensive Credit Reporting regime, or CCR for short.

With Comprehensive Credit Reporting, we will now provide a more detailed and comprehensive view of your credit history to credit bureaus. This essentially means more positive credit information can be seen on your credit report, such as making your repayments on time.

We want to help you unlock your true financial potential. By applying for and repaying a loan with us, your credit score could increase.

Ready to apply?

Check your repayments first

It's important to be confident you can meet your potential loan repayments before moving ahead with an application.

Use our easy three-step loan repayment calculator to estimate your repayments before you apply.

Ready to Apply? You can get started now.

1. I'd like to borrow: $8,500
Please consider: loans above $15,000 and terms above 36 months, require security in the form of a registered motor vehicle you own.
2. Loan Term (Months)

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We Make Applying Easy

We know how important it is to receive your funds in a timely manner. As a hard-working Australian, you don’t have time to waste on needless paperwork.

That’s why our loan application process has been perfected over time to be as simple and quick as possible.

Frequently Asked Questions

If you have any further questions, you can head to our FAQ page for more info. Alternatively, get in touch with our helpful customer service team!