Understanding the Credit Report in South Africa
It isn’t enough to just get your credit report if you live in South Africa. You need to be confident that you can use that information to correctly evaluate your needs and your financial picture. Remember, this is the profile that will be viewed by lenders as well as insurance companies. Don’t be surprised if a potential employer also checks into it as that is becoming a very common practice as well.
Start out by making sure the personal information on the credit report is right. This should include your name, address, and any previous addresses. Your employers will also be listed and you want to make sure they are correct. Next, you want to look over each account on your credit report. If you see any that you never opened then you should mark them.
Next, you should go through each creditor on there and make sure that the balances and information about payments are accurate. If you see any discreprencies you need to mare them. Take your time to go through everything very well so you don’t miss important details. You also want to pay attention to who is looking at your credit score. It should only be those that you have given authorization to do so. If you don’t recognize an entity there you want to mark it.
If you got all the way through your credit report without problems, you should feel very good about it. You should also make it a point to review it annually to make sure it stays accurate. If you did find problems that you marked, now you need to proceed with the method on the websites for the various reporting agencies so that they can take a look at it. You will need to complete a form, supply documentation, and more. The changes can be slow coming so make sure you keep copies of all you send and that you stay on top of what they are looking over.
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It is really important that you know what you are looking at with all the data regarding your credit report in South Africa. If you don’t understand the details on it, then it is going to be impossible for you to use that information to verify accuracy and to know what your goals should be for improvements of your overall credit report. The major reporting entities though do have information on their website as well as when they mail you the report that show you what everything means. If you still need help, contact them for additional clarification.
You can also see if your local lender will sit down with you and go over your credit report. Many banks and credit unions will do this at no charge to help their customers make better financial choices. You may be able to find help through AARP locally too which consists of retired individuals that are more than willing to offer such information to help out and there is never any charge for their assistance.