If you are planning to apply for a home loan, there are important changes to Australia’s Privacy Laws which will affect what information is shown on your credit report.
In the past, Australia worked under a negative credit reporting system. This meant that besides credit enquiries, only credit related infringements appeared on your report. The following information would be included on your report:
• A payment default of $100 or more that is 60 days or more overdue
• A clearout – If you owe money, but the credit provider was unable to make contact after several attempts
• A bankruptcy order within the last seven years
• Details of credit applications made in the last five years.
However, in March 2014, comprehensive credit reporting was introduced. This meant that Australia has a positive reporting system and more information is shown on your credit report. As well as the information on payment defaults listed above, lenders now have access to the past 24 months of repayments for ongoing financial commitments such as car loans, personal loans and credit cards going back as far as December 2012.
This is great news for those who have been a model borrower as your efforts to make repayments on time will be rewarded, however for others, it may require better planning and budgeting. As lenders will have access to your information from the past two years, now is the time to get into the habit of ensuring you make all your repayments when they fall due.
In the past, missing a repayment by a few days or even a week may not have been a big deal, however now it could affect your chances at obtaining a home loan.