08 Feb 2012

WOULD YOU SHARE YOUR CREDIT REPORT WITH YOUR PARTNER?

WOULD YOU SHARE YOUR CREDIT REPORT WITH YOUR PARTNER?

Equifax research reveals that 1 in 4 would ask their partner to share their credit report before taking on new finance

www.equifax.co.uk

London, 8th February 2012 - Just a week before Valentine’s day, leading online credit information provider, Equifax, has released new research which suggests that when it comes to money matters, the head is ruling the heart for many couples.

The latest Equifax research*, conducted amongst over 1,000 users of the Equifax Personal Solutions credit report services, reveals that more than 1 in 4 (27%) consumers would ask their partner to share with them their credit report before applying for a joint credit agreement such as a mortgage or loan. Women appear to be more likely to ask to see their partner’s credit file, at 28.9%, compared to 25.9% of men.

“Of course, only the individual concerned can access their credit file”, explained Neil Munroe, External Affairs Director, Equifax. “But what this new research does seem to suggest is an understanding amongst many couples that any joint finances will affect both their credit histories.”

It might not be the most romantic conversation for Valentine’s day, but Equifax is urging couples to share details about all credit commitments, including any debts, especially if they share any joint financial accounts or are about to open a joint account.

“If you have a joint financial agreement with a partner, then their credit information will be linked to yours for as long as that agreement exists”, continued Neil Munroe. “This is because lenders look at all the financial commitments someone has when new credit is applied for - and if there are joint financial agreements they are more than likely to look at the credit history of the partner too.

“That’s why if you are planning to take out any joint financial agreements - whether it’s a mortgage, finance for the family car or just a mobile phone agreement - it’s really important to be upfront about any financial agreements. And if you already have joint finances, it’s especially important to be honest about any late payments.”

The Equifax research also revealed that that almost 1 in 5 consumers admitted to previously keeping details of a personal loan or credit card debt secret from their partner. Although there also appears to be a greater realisation that if you are in a relationship you need to be completely honest about any financial difficulties you might face. Over 87% of respondents said if they started to fall behind on credit repayments in the future they would tell their partner.

Equifax offers a free online credit check, where you can view your personal credit report, including any joint agreements you may have. The Equifax Credit Report, with the facility to access credit information for the first 30 days free, gives consumers a valuable insight into their credit status. Accessible simply by logging onto www.equifax.co.uk it is designed to help individuals understand their credit file and see what lenders see to assess new credit applications. It also includes expert tips and advice to help consumers take the right steps to manage their finances and navigate through life’s challenges.

If the customer does not cancel before the end of the 30 Day Free Trial, the service will continue at £6.99 per month, giving them unlimited online access to their credit information and weekly alerts on any changes to their credit file. It also includes an online dispute facility to help them correct any errors on their credit file simply and quickly.

*1051 adults who were married or in a relationship responded to the Equifax survey, December 2011

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For further press information please contact: Louise Fowler, Clare Watson or Wendy Harrison at HSL on 020 8977 9132 / Fax: 020 8977 5200 or Email: louise@harrisonsadler.com

About Equifax

Equifax is a global leader in consumer and commercial information solutions, providing businesses of all sizes and consumers with information they can trust. We organize and assimilate data on more than 500 million consumers and 81 million businesses worldwide, and use advanced analytics and proprietary technology to create and deliver customized insights that enrich both the performance of businesses and the lives of consumers.

Headquartered in Atlanta, Equifax operates or has investments in 17 countries and is a member of Standard & Poor’s (S&P) 500® Index. Its common stock is traded on the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE) under the symbol EFX. For more information, please visit www.equifax.com.