How to read your credit score using Credit Savvy
Improve your financial wellbeing and get a handle on your credit with this free tool.
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Credit score. Maybe you've heard it mentioned on the radio or your workmates have been discussing it at lunch. Whatever the case, it might be time to check if you've got a good credit score or a not-so-good-one and there are actually several tools available that can help you figure it out.
Companies such as Credit Savvy can get you your credit score for free. With just a little bit of information from you, it can give you access to additional tools to help you track your score and find out when there are changes to your credit report.
What is Credit Savvy?
Credit Savvy is an online service that gives Aussies access to their credit score for free. It launched in 2015 and is owned and operated by CBA New Digital Businesses Pty Ltd (the Commonwealth Bank).
Credit Savvy is a free service; it earns money from advertising from banks and other financial institutions. This means third parties may pay Credit Savvy to show you their products.
What service does it offer?
Credit Savvy works with Experian, one of three main consumer credit reporting companies here in Australia. Using Experian data, it provides the ability for you to find out your credit score along with resources to help you understand how they work and how to improve a low score.
With Credit Savvy's free online service you can:
- Get access to your credit score
- Track your credit score with monthly updates
- Learn what's behind your credit score
- Receive alerts when there are changes to your credit file
How to get your credit score with Credit Savvy
You can create an account with Credit Savvy by verifying your identity with a form of ID, such as your driver's licence, Medicare card or passport. Credit Savvy will then securely retrieve your credit data from Experian and get your credit score and credit file information to you within minutes.
You will need to create an account with Credit Savvy first and you can choose to sign up with your email, Facebook or Google account.
What are the credit score ratings from Credit Savvy?
The Experian model is used with your Credit Savvy credit score, which means that you will receive a score between 0 and 1,000. There are other credit bureaus that use slightly different scales and models.
The higher the number, the better your credit score. Generally speaking, the better your credit score, the greater chance you have of a lender approving your loan application. To help you see how you rank, your score will fall into one of five tiers ranging from "Excellent" for the highest scores down to "Below average" for ones that need more improvement.
There are several practical steps you can take to improve your credit score including paying your bills on time, lowering the limits on your credit cards and making frequent payments to any existing loans.
How does Credit Savvy get your credit score?
Credit Savvy credit scores are calculated by a statistical algorithm using information from your credit report. The score is generated by looking at some key attributes including your repayment history, the credit limit of each of your credit products and the number and type of credit provider that have made credit enquiries on your report.
It's important to note that there are some things that could have a negative impact on your Credit Savvy credit score, including:
- A large number of credit applications in a short period of time
- Court judgements
- Open accounts with debt collection agencies
- Missed payments
- Short term credit such as payday lenders
- Bankruptcy actions
Keen to learn more about credit scores? Read our full guide on credit scores that includes how they work, what they're used for and where else you can get your credit score for free.
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