Frequently asked questions

Credit Checks

What is a credit check?

A credit check is a review of your past and current financial behaviour that considers any sources of credit recorded against your name (including but not limited to credit cards, utility bills, mobile phone contracts and mortgages). As a responsible lender, The Start Up Loans Company conducts credit checks to avoid increasing financial indebtedness that may overburden an individual borrower.

Who conducts credit checks?

If you are applying for a Start Up Loan, then as part of the application process, we will conduct a credit check on your behalf, provided you have given your consent in accordance with our Privacy and Data Sharing Policy.

Please note, after a credit check has been conducted, our team is not able to discuss the specific details of your credit report with you. If you have concerns regarding your credit history, you will need to contact a Credit Reference Agency to request a copy of your Credit Report and address any concerns with them directly.

Below is a list of the three main Credit Reference Agencies currently operating in the UK but please note, you may be charged a small fee if you choose to do this. It’s also important to remember that Credit Reference Agencies don’t always hold the same information on file, so you may wish to consult more than one if you have any concerns about the contents of your personal Credit Report.

CallCredit
Phone: 0870 0601414
Visit website

Equifax PLC
Phone: 0870 010 0583
Visit website

Experian
Phone: 0844 4818000
Visit website

Is it a personal credit check or a business credit check?

Start Up Loans are personal loans so the credit check that we run is a personal credit check.

Does a credit check affect my credit score?

When a credit check is completed as part of your Start Up Loan application, it leaves a ‘footprint’ on your credit report showing that you applied for finance. This may impact upon your credit score; however an individual’s credit score is made up of many different factors that offer a combined view of your financial behaviours (such as other applications for credit, any credit previously secured and your history of making credit repayments etc.). If your Start Up Loan application is successful then it will appear on your personal Credit Report, along with any re-payments that you make, for at least six years.

How long is a credit check valid for?

Any credit checks conducted as part of your Start Up Loan application are only valid for a three-month period. If your application is still in progress after this point, we will need to conduct a new credit check. In most cases, a credit check will be conducted at an early stage so you can be confident about your eligibility to apply for a Start Up Loan before investing your time in the rest of the application process. This means that you will have up to three months to finalise your business and personal documents, like your Business Plan, Cash Flow Forecast and Personal Survival Budget, which will form the basis of the assessment. For this reason, we encourage you to think carefully about when the most appropriate time to commence your application should be.

Can I still apply for a Start Up Loan if I have a poor credit history or credit impairments?

A poor credit history will not necessarily prevent you from securing a Start Up Loan; however, it is certainly a factor that will be considered as part of our assessment process. We are committed to responsible lending and, as part of this, review each applicant’s past financial behaviours and current ability to afford the loan.

For this reason, we are unable to lend to individuals with certain credit impairments. These include, but are not limited to, the following:

  • You are filing for or currently bankrupt or on a Debt Relief Order (DRO)
  • You have an outstanding Individual Voluntary Agreement (IVA) or Trust Deed
  • You are on Debt Management Programs or Debt Arrangement Schemes (DAS)
  • You have an outstanding County Court Judgement (CCJ)

Please note, The Start Up Loans Company assesses every application on its own merits and reserves the right to decline applications for other credit related reasons, particularly in cases where lending is likely to increase financial indebtedness that may overburden an individual.

If any of the above apply to you, or you are concerned about your credit history, you can review your Credit Report by consulting a Credit Reference Agency. Below is a list of the three main Credit Reference Agencies currently operating in the UK but please note, you may be charged a small fee if you choose to do this.

It’s also important to remember that Credit Reference Agencies don’t always hold the same information on file, so you may wish to consult more than one if you have any concerns about the contents of your personal Credit Report.

CallCredit
Phone: 0870 0601414
Visit website

Equifax PLC
Phone: 0870 010 0583
Visit website

Experian
Phone: 0844 4818000
Visit website

You can also contact the Citizens Advice Bureau or the Money Advice Service for free advice on how to improve your credit record.

If you have any further questions about credit checks or applying for a Start Up Loan, please contact our Customer Service team.

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