Guide to Getting a Credit Card if you Have a Poor Credit Score

If you’ve recently applied for a credit card, you may have found it far more difficult to get accepted than before. This is because card providers are now stricter about who they lend to and are operating a much tighter risk policy. They are scrutinizing credit reports like never before and refusing almost anyone with a less-than-perfect credit history.

Repayments could shoot up

No matter which type of card you are applying for, you’ll need to have a spotless credit record to be accepted for the best rates and interest-free deals – and in some cases, to be accepted at all.

This makes for particularly worrying reading for those looking for a new balance transfer deal, as if you’re unable to find a new 0% card, you could face a worrying hike in monthly repayments.

Don’t damage your credit score

But having to pay higher interest is not the only problem created by having a cheap credit card application rejected. If you are too reckless in your applications, you could find your credit record fouled with a litany of failed attempts to secure credit – thereby tainting your credit score.

Ask for a quotation search

When making an application, request a “quotation search” for comparison purposes, as this enables you to shop around for cheap deals – without leaving damaging footprints on your credit file.

Check your credit record

Nonetheless, if you find that you are repeatedly being rejected, then it’s time to stop applying – and time to start checking your credit record. Follow the link to get your free credit report.

Clean up your credit report
As a borrower, the key is to get as much as you can on your credit record in your favor; the good news is there are some simple steps you can take:

  • Set up monthly direct debits on your card repayments to ensure you don’t miss them.
  • Cancel any credit cards which you are not using.
  • Correct any errors by adding a “notice of correction”.
  • Ensure you are registered on the electoral roll.
  • Change addresses on old financial products to your current address.
  • Rejected with a perfect credit record?

In the current uncertain climate, even those with unblemished records are having their applications turned down. This is because each lender has certain criteria they are looking for in their borrowers – so there’s no need to assume that just because one provider rejects you, others will too. One course of action could be to wait a month or so and then try another lender. However, remember to request a “quotation search” when you do, otherwise, the lender’s assessment of your credit history will only increase the size of your credit footprint, which could negatively impact on your credit rating.

Find out more about what to do if you have a poor credit score and want to apply for a credit card at credit cards:

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