CreditSmart reveals rise in credit usage amid economic uncertainty and growing credit health concerns
CreditSmart media release / 21 November 2022
Australians are increasingly concerned about their credit health, but remain unaware of credit reporting, according to the latest research from consumer education website, CreditSmart. The research also shows credit usage is up almost 10%, with eight in 10 Australians now having at least one credit product.
CreditSmart article by Elsa Markula / 17 November 2022
In Australia a ‘lock’ on your credit report is known as a ‘credit ban’. You can place a credit ban on your credit report with just one credit reporting body (CRB), who, at your request, can also extend the ban to the other two credit reporting bodies. The three CRBs are Equifax, Experian and illion. The credit ban will block all third parties, such as lenders or other companies, from accessing your credit file without your consent.
Incoming regulation of Australia’s sizable buy now pay later (BNPL) space is likely to improve protections for consumers, with a recent report revealing one-third of users on BNPL platforms have fallen behind on their scheduled payments.
ARCA supports OAIC's independent review of the Credit Reporting Code
ARCA media release / 20 September
The Australian Retail Credit Association (ARCA) welcomes the findings of the Office of the Australian Information Commissioner’s (OAIC) review of the Privacy (Credit Reporting) Code, the CR Code, following a thorough consultation to address the current needs of consumers and industry stakeholders.
A financial hardship arrangement will no longer ruin your credit score
Money Magazine 20 July 2022 / Article by Geri Cremin
Changes to Australia's credit reporting system kicked in on 1 July, designed to better reflect the credit history of consumers who are in financial hardship. Financial hardshipcan affect anyone at any time. A financial hardship arrangement is an agreement between a borrower and a lender to adjust the borrower's loan repayments because something unexpected has affected their ability to repay.
New credit reporting changes will protect Aussies in financial hardship
Savings.com.au / Article by Hanan Dervisevic
From 1 July 2022, credit reporting changes will come into effect protecting the credit history of consumers who are in financial hardship. Consumers who agree to a financial hardship agreement with their lender for a personal loan, home loan, car loan, or credit card will have their repayment history safeguarded through a special payment arrangement.
Credit reporting on financial hardship arrangements 2022
Canstar/ Article by Maria Bekiaris
New credit reporting rules kicking in from 1 July 2022 will affect people entering financial hardship arrangements. We take a look at what is changing. There have been some big changes to credit reporting in Australia over the years. The biggest was probably the introduction of comprehensive credit reporting (CCR) which allowed positive credit information to be included in credit reports.
Financial hardship deals to be flagged on credit reports
SMH & The Age/ John Collett
Financial hardship deals often allow borrowers to have their payments lowered while they are doing it tough. Many were made with mortgage lenders and utility companies, as borrowers struggled to meet repayments after they had lost their jobs or had their hours significantly reduced during the pandemic.
ARCA’s Geri Cremin featured on Money Magazine Australia's Friends with Money podcast to bust some myths around credit scores and credit reports. Geri discussed the differences between a credit score and a credit report and the importance of consumers understanding their credit report.
As more lenders report on consumer loan repayments, CreditSmart is urging Australians to take ownership of their credit health. CreditSmart's annual research revealed that 52% of Australians never checked their credit report and 25% of Australians knew their monthly credit repayments were reported on their credit report.
As Christmas approaches, don’t Buy-Now-Regret-Later
CreditSmart.org.au/Article by Geri Cremin
This Christmas consider the real impact multiple small BNPL transactions could have on your long-term credit health. Be extra cautious if, like many Australians, you use multiple BNPL services. Each purchase may seem small, but they can quickly add up.
Upcoming changes to credit reporting: Good news or bad news?
Savings.com.au/Rachel Horne interview Mike Laing
Changes to the comprehensive credit reporting (CCR) system are inbound for 1 July 2022 that are set to impact Australians in hardship arrangements. Currently, any sort of hardship arrangement isn’t visible on a person's credit report. People that have been impacted by COVID-19 lockdowns, for example, will not have any missed repayments listed on their credit reports.
Responsible Lending - Who has to act responsibly – the lender or the borrower?
CreditSmart.org.au/Written by Mike Laing
Currently, lenders have “responsible lending” obligations that require them to assess that the loan the consumer is seeking is both “not unsuitable” given their requirements and objectives, and also able to be repaid without the consumer experiencing substantial hardship.
New credit reporting timeline puts industry in a spin
Banking Day/John Kavanaugh
5 February 2021: The National Consumer Credit Protection Amendment Act (Mandatory Credit Reporting and Other Measures) Act includes a provision allowing consumers to access their credit reporting information held by a credit reporting body free of charge every three months.
What to do if your mortgage holiday is over but you can't afford to pay
Money Magazine/Written by Michael Blyth
13 November 2020: Six months after the introduction of deferrals, many Aussies who requested one are now starting to resume their repayments for their deferred loans. By the end of September the number of home loans deferred had fallen to less than 325,000.
Tough decisions loom for homeowners on COVID-19 loan deferments
Together Australia / Derek Rose
26 August 2020: Thousands of homeowners granted payment deferments on their mortgages at the height of the COVID-19 pandemic have a tough choice to make in the coming weeks. Those six-month payment deferments will start expiring in September, and while another payment holiday is on offer for up to four months, taking it could be a really bad idea.
20 August 2020: Australians impacted by COVID-19 may be able to access a further four-month payment pause or deferral on their loan repayments from their lenders to help them get back on track – but that will not be automatic and consumers need to consider their options carefully, says consumer education website, CreditSmart.
20 July 2020: The revised approach to credit reporting under the mortgage deferral programs will most likely continue post September but the sector is urged to work with their customers on a case-by-case basis.
6 July 2020: The Australian Retail Credit Association have shared rare insight into the composition of the credit market, in the process of seeking continued authorisation for the mechanics of consumer credit reporting.
Payment pauses on credit repayments due to COVID-19 will not be reported as 'missed payments' on credit report.
Australians impacted by COVID-19 who are seeking a payment pause or deferral on their loan repayments, need not worry about the impact on their credit report, confirms consumer education website CreditSmart.