How To Check Credit Score Singapore: A Comprehensive Guide To Understanding And Improving CBS Credit Reports
September 20, 2023
The credit world is diverse, bearing numerous numbers and resorts. Receiving your credit report for the first time may be uncomprehensive for most. Unlike basic reports, your credit report contains vast information you may need help understanding.
But worry no more. In this article, we’ll dive into what these reports are and how to check credit score Singapore.
Definition Of A Credit Report?
A credit report is a detailed record of an individual or entity’s credit history. It tracks your financial behaviour and maintained by credit bureau agencies. The report will outline if you diligently reimbursed your loans on time.
Alternatively, it will show if you default on your loans. A credit report plays a crucial role in illustrating your financial position. It is even more significant in informing lenders whether you are a worthy borrower.
In Singapore, the Credit Bureau Singapore issues and maintains these reports. The agency comprehensively adds uploads from massive financial sectors and central retail banks.
Where To Get Your Credit Report
Fortunately, accessing your credit report in Singapore is no hassle. You can do it online or at the designated physical credit report locations.
You can log onto https://www.creditbureau.com.sg/buy-my-credit-report.html and access your online credit report whenever you wish. However, it is essential to note that this service doesn’t operate from 5 am to 6 am daily and between 12 am to 7 am during month end. These periods are for maintenance.
Singapore has over 5 SingPost branches from which you can access your credit report. The process is pretty straightforward.
After the SingPost branch sends you the form to fill out, CBS authenticates it and sends the report to you. This process happens within one business day of receiving the application form from Singpost.
The Credit Bureau Office
Address: 2 Shenton Way, #20-02, SGX Centre 1, Singapore 068804
Working hours: Mon – Fri 9 am – 6 pm
After CBS verifies your documents, you can pick up the report or send it to your preferred address.
Price Of Getting Your Credit Report
Credit report cost in Singapore is quite affordable. Accessing your report will cost you $8.00. If you include additional delivery modes, you’ll incur an extra $2.02 fee.
If you apply for your report at a Singpost branch, you can choose a faster alternative, which will cost you $19.44.
CBS accepts various payment methods, including
You can also get a report free of charge, provided you recently applied with a different credit institution that is a CBS member. The letter issued clearly outlines the methods of obtaining your free credit report. Typically, you can receive this data within 30 days of receiving the letter.
Defining Credit Score: CBS Credit Score
A credit score is a four-digit numerical value representing your creditworthiness and financial health. It is not set in stone and will vary based on your credit information. It is also a risk assessment tool used by lenders.
If, for instance, you boast a credit score of 2,000, you are financially healthy and are less likely to default on your loan. However, if you score 1,000, you may be a liability to these institutions.
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Comprehensive Guide To Reading A Credit Report
Reading these documents may give you a migraine if you aren’t familiar with them. Let’s look at some pointers to help you fathom them.
1. History Of Account Status
Under this section, it is impossible to hide anything. It outlines the products a consumer holds. When mentioning products, we refer to items such as:
- Secured or unsecured loans
- Personal loans
- Mortgage loans
- Car loans, among others
Under your account status history, you can see your payment patterns over the last year. Specific codes represent promptness in paying your monthly instalments.
2. Initial Enquiries
The previous enquiries hold data pertaining to a consumer’s credit institution requisition for the last two years. These requests can constitute:
- A recent credit institution application.
- Guarantor review.
- Assessment of the holder’s credit facilities by the CBS member bank
Applying to too many credit institutions within a small time frame may negatively impact your score. It implies that you are hungry for cash. However, there is no accurate application number or specific duration, making the credit score computation some sort of enigma. The frequency of requesting your credit score also appears here.
3. Default Records
Within the last year of repayment noted in your account status history, a qualified report reader can tell whether you are struggling financially. If a consumer has difficulty repaying the debt, their payment codes start going down the drain until it results in a default.
The default section reflects the items payable to the specific CBS member facility. It could be an unpaid balance, partial, complete or agreed-upon settlement. It also includes the amount let go in case of a negotiated settlement.
The default records space retains his information for up to three years.
A non-scored grade, HX, is only issued if a bankruptcy section is on a consumer credit report. It takes years to restore your credit score if you find yourself in this position.
Furthermore, loan approval becomes a nightmare. These records are well kept in the report for five years from the issuance of the bankruptcy report.
Importance Of Credit Score In Singapore
Indeed, your credit score is fundamental. Lending institutions like banks use this numerical value to measure whether you will repay your loan. Before borrowing money, therefore, you must have a good score.
Whether you wish to acquire a loan for purchasing your house or simply apply for your credit card, the score plays a significant role. Similarity is evident when applying for HDB loans.
If you aren’t a full-shift working employee making regular Central Provident Find (CPF) contributions in Singapore, HDB will review your credit report.
They do so to identify how you can repay your debt. In employment additionally, some employers run background checks with the CBS. Your credit score just might haul your foot in the door. This observation is particularly evident for financial institution employees like banks.
Institutions screen employees’ credit scores. The risk appetite for the employers depends on the position and role you apply for.
However, don’t think the process stops after landing your job. You may be in trouble if you mishandle your credit, and these institutions conduct an annual screening check.
What Does A Bad Credit Score Causes?
In computing your credit score, CBS uses an algorithm on your current credit information. With new changes in credit activity, your number shifts. Certain elements will negatively impact your credit score determination. Here are some of them:
- Unimpressive credit background: A good credit history is lacking to establish a solid score.
- High Credit exposure: Increased borrowing places you at a higher risk credit-wise.
- Presence of criminal activity: Criminal records will significantly affect your score.
- Inadequate backup history: Failure to pay the loan in full or on time.
- Bulky enquiries: Constant loan applications within a short period will affect your score.
Why Some Financial Institutions Deny While Others Accept Applicants With Matching Credit Scores
Your credit score goes under review whenever you apply for a loan from any credit facility that is CBS-incorporated. However, you should know that different lenders seek varying elements and have varying risk appetites. Simply, there is no global metric upon which lenders use to determine creditworthiness.
Furthermore, based on your finances and general data, each company will assort you with an internal individual credit score and risk profile. Ultimately, the bank risk assessment determines whether you get the loan.
It is also worth mentioning that CBS doesn’t blacklist individuals. They simply compute and provide accurate credit information of consumers with credit structures to the lenders.
How To Improve Your Credit Score In Singapore And The Process Length
While sometimes circumstances cause you to overextend yourself and damage your credit background, the bright side is it is not in stone, and you can redeem yourself.
Improving Credit Score Tips
To get back on your feet, you can:
- Remunerate your outstanding balances on time
- Maintain at least one credit card
- Take only a few loans within an intermittent period
Moreover, if you lack an active credit service, consider taking a credit card to begin your credit rating journey. Pay your dues on time and constantly track your progress.
If your credit score history affects your ability to acquire a credit card, you can take a credit card bearing a low limit.
Does Any Factor Exist In My Credit Report That Is Permanent?
You might face challenges if your credit history reflects more severe issues like bankruptcy and defaulting. Bankruptcy records, for instance, remain intact for up to 5 years while defaulting for three years.
This occurrence means that even after clearance, you might struggle to obtain loans for a few years. However, the credit report is gracious enough to record the state of the default, where debt management processes are in gear or for those discharged from bankruptcy.
Irremediable Credit Issues Like Bankruptcy And Insolvency In Singapore
There are some codes that, if present in your report, may significantly hinder your chances of getting a loan.
- W code: If you notice this code, your credit score is indefinitely scarred.
- R or S codes: This code implies that the credit institution has shut down your account and that you lack any outstanding balance.
- H code: When this shows, it suggests that your account closed without your request.
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Your credit score is essential, especially in the modern financial setup. If you want to access funds easily, you should have a good score that implies to your lenders that you are trustworthy and can pay back your debt efficiently.
You should always review how you manage your credit to prevent any issues with borrowing.