How to Fix a Bad Credit Score?

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A bad credit score can make it difficult to get credit and loan approved.

Written by Felicia Soon

Info compiled and edited by Gunaprasath Bupalan (YouTube – Emjay Communications , The Malaysia Global Business Forum , News Hub Asia , Property360Digest)

With the rise of inflation and higher consumer spending, it is easy for someone to fall into bad credit. Bad credit refers to a person’s poor history of paying bills on time and is often reflected in a low credit score. Managing your finances is an important measure of your financial health.

According to Group Chief Executive Officer of CTOS Holdings Sdn Bhd, Dennis Martin, CTOS provides crucial access to credit report/score. With CTOS Score, consumers are now able to know where they stand in the eyes of credit grantors and lenders.

Credit Tip-Off Service (CTOS) is a private company under the scope of the Credit Reporting Agencies Act 2010. The role of CTOS is to help facilitate credit extension and provide transparency between borrowers and lenders to improve access to credit. While lenders gain access to information about their potential clients, individuals seeking credit are able to use this service to manage and update their credit profiles to improve their chances of getting their loans approved.

According to Group Chief Executive Officer of CTOS Holdings Sdn Bhd, Dennis Martin, CTOS provides crucial access to credit report/score. With CTOS Score, consumers are now able to know where they stand in the eyes of credit grantors and lenders. By knowing their CTOS Score, consumers will be able to take charge of their own credit worthiness and consequently be in a better position to manage their credit eligibility and access required financing.

Contrary to a popular belief, CTOS does not blacklist anyone. “That is a misconception that we must clarify to the public,” Martin says. He adds that the role of a Credit Reporting Agency (CRA) is to collect, process and provide credit information to credit grantors and banks, so that they can accurately evaluate the credit worthiness of individuals and businesses. Decisions on credit applications are made exclusively by the credit grantors themselves, in accordance to their risk appetite, business policies and strategies.

                    Contrary to a popular belief, CTOS does not blacklist anyone.

What is CCRIS?

As stipulated under the CRA Act 2010, CRAs have to ensure that their data is relevant, up-to-date and accurate. The data in a consumer credit report is updated every month as Central Credit Reference Information System (CCRIS) data from Bank Negara Malaysia (BNM). But each account on your report may be updated on different days, depending on the creditor’s reporting cycle.

Steps on how to check your CTOS score report

Consumers can conveniently access and check their own information in CTOS report via our Self-Check service. General public can do so online by registering an account on our website at www.ctoscredit.com.my OR via our mobile app (download from App Store and Google Play store) OR by visiting our service centres nationwide. Once your CTOS User ID is activated, you can access your report anytime at your own convenience. We also provide free consultation and financial education materials to help customers understand their credit standing and how to manage it better.

How a good credit score can make you more attractive to lenders?

CTOS Score ranges from 300 to 850, and the higher the score, the more financially trustworthy a person is considered to be. Based on CTOS subscribers’ data of close to a million consumers, 36% has a Fair to Excellent CTOS Score, 51% Low to Poor scores & 13% has no score (thin file customers, not enough data to generate a Score).

Hence it is important to do a SELF-CHECK before applying for a loan to ensure there are no issues that stops you from being approved for a loan. Get your CTOS Score Report to know your own status. If there are any issues, you can then start fixing them immediately to improve your score.

CTOS Score Report also provides a comprehensive view of all your credit files including data on identity, business exposure, litigation and bankruptcy, type of credit facilities, payment history for banks and non-banks, information obtained from public records and subscribers and so on. Consistent self-checks will prevent you from becoming a victim of identity theft and fraudulent transactions. So do a self-check TODAY at www.ctoscredit.com.my

Aside from the general public, how could CTOS be of assistance to corporate outfits?  

General public can do so online by registering an account on our website at www.ctoscredit.com.my OR via our mobile app (download from App Store and Google Play store) OR by visiting our service centres nationwide.

CTOS can help businesses and SMEs create transparency in order to facilitate access to quick and easy credit, reduce risk by enabling businesses to make more informed credit decisions, help improve and enhance business practices by offering dynamic business solution tools as well as help improve efficiency of running day-to-day business tasks by automating the process flow.

CTOS delivers a complete portfolio of credit risk management solutions and services and is widely used by country’s banking and financial institutions, insurance companies, telecommunication companies, large corporations, SMEs, legal firms and state bodies. The company’s flagship offering for businesses is CTOS Credit Manager – a cutting-edge, versatile tool that enables business owners to evaluate and monitor their customers to prevent business risk, as well as recover bad debts more easily.

Besides Credit Manager, CTOS also offers a variety of new products and services for SMEs and businesses, such as CTOS SME Score, CTOS Identity Verification (eKYC), CTOS Application & Decisioning, CTOS KYC Screening, International Business Reports, CTOS ConneX and more. This is part of CTOS’s strategic journey from historically being a data business into a dynamic insight and analytics-driven provider.

Based on statistics, what is the ratio of Malaysians with bad debts compared to Malaysians with good credit status?

Credit score is not really a measurement of bad debts, it represents the risk a lender takes when you borrow money. You may be loaded, but if you always default in payment due to bad payment behaviour, this will reflect negatively in your credit score. Lenders use credit scores to evaluate the probability that an individual will repay his or her debts. CTOS Score ranges from 300 to 850, and the higher the score, the more financially trustworthy a person is considered to be. Based on CTOS subscribers data of close to a million consumers, 36% has a Fair to Excellent CTOS Score, 51% Low to Poor scores & 13% has no score (thin file customers, not enough data to generate a Score). The reason is because most customers only come to us to do self-check when they have encountered issues (i.e loan rejected).

CTOS advice consumers (Individual) to do a SELF-CHECK before applying for a loan to ensure there are no issues that stops you from being approved for a loan. Get your CTOS Score Report to know your own status. If there are any issues, you can then start fixing them immediately to improve your score. Another important point to note is that CTOS Score Report isn’t just about your credit score. It also provides a comprehensive view of all your credit files including data on identity, business exposure, litigation and bankruptcy, type of credit facilities, payment history for banks and non-banks, information obtained from public records and subscribers and so on. Consistent self-checks will ensure you don’t become a victim of ID theft and fraudulent transactions. So do a self-check TODAY at www.ctoscredit.com.my

To those with high delinquency, CTOS advices to start paying your bills on time. If you are the forgetful type, sign-up for auto debit facilities, at least pay the minimum amount. Keep your balances low. Be mindful when you swipe your credit cards and not to apply for new credits unnecessarily, spend within your limit. If your credit score is low because you’ve regularly missed payments, declared bankruptcy, defaulted on a loan, had a loan turned over to a collection agency, it can take years to rebuild your credit. However, even in this situation, you can start raising your score if you can get credit and make timely payments

Tips to improve your credit score

  • Start paying your bills on time. If you are the forgetful type, sign-up for auto debit facilities to at least pay the minimum amount.
  • Keep your balances low. Be mindful when you swipe your credit cards and do not apply for new credits unnecessarily, rather keep spending within your limit.
  • If your credit score is low because you have regularly missed payments, declared bankruptcy, defaulted on a loan, had a loan turned over to a collection agency, it can take years to rebuild your credit. However, you can still raise your score if you can get credit and make timely repayments.

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