The first step towards becoming an aware credit user is to know your credit score. However, merely knowing your credit score is not enough. You should know how to read and analyse your credit report as well. Doing so shall help you in identifying and understanding the factors that are leading to a low credit score, if any. Also, if there are any discrepancies in the report, the same can be tackled if one comprehends their credit report.
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How to read your Credit report?
To read and understand what is stated in your CIBIL report, you need to be familiar with its components. Check for these in your report and you will be able to make an understanding of where you report is indicating.
Components of a CIBIL report:
1. CIBIL Score
This will be a 3-digit numeric value ranging from 300 – 900. You will also find score factors, i.e. the factors that affected your credit score.
2. Personal and Contact Information
This section shall hold your name, address details and phone number as provided by you.
3. Employment Information
Here you will find your employer’s name, type of your employment (e.g. salaried) and monthly income.
Apart from these, your credit report may contain the following as well:
- Open/closed accounts
- Dates when these accounts were opened/closed
- Payment history
- Credit utilization
- Loan status (Paid/pending)
If you’ve made any credit card or loan applications, the lender will pull your credit history from the bureaus. This will account as a hard inquiry. Such multiple inquiries shall impact your credit score negatively. However, if you check your credit score regularly without the intention of applying for credit, it is considered a soft enquiry and this enquiry does not feature in your credit report.
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What is a CIBIL report?
Remember receiving a report card back in school? Your academic performance was measured on the grades or marks given in that report card. A credit report works the same way.
Credit bureaus like CIBIL, collect information on credit accounts and loans, bankruptcies and late payments, and recent inquiries. Based on these, you are assigned your CIBIL score and an extensive CIBIL report is generated.
It also provides a snapshot of your loan accounts and repayment track record. In short, your credit report is a measure of how you manage your personal finances. Your CIBIL score depends on how well you handle your personal finances. In other words, your creditworthiness depends on your CIBIL score.
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