How can I build credit? How can I make sure there are no nasty surprises when I get the results of my credit report? Which graduate bank is the best option to help with my credit check? These are questions that more and more graduates are asking themselves – and understandably so considering the long term benefits that improving your credit report can bring.
If you’re a graduate who’s thinking about how to check your credit score for free or how to improve credit score, any financial expert will tell you that finding a graduate account that suits you, and performs strongly in comparison to the competition, will act as a cornerstone in helping to make sure the results of your credit report don’t disappoint.
Things to Consider When Choosing a Graduate Account
Our top tip when shopping around for a graduate account, especially if you are significantly overdrawn, is to go for the option with the largest and longest 0% interest overdraft. This will allow you to pay off your debt without the pressure of mounting interest, helping you to avoid the kinds of charges that will negatively impact any future credit check.
Remember that the 0% interest on graduate overdrafts does not last forever and so you should plan to clear your entire overdraft with regular monthly budgeting. By budgeting to clear your overdraft before the 0% interest vanishes, you will strengthen your credit report as this pattern of repayment demonstrates that you’re a responsible borrower.
If you graduate without the burden of an overdraft then you can take advantage of earning what is, effectively, free money. Simply take the full 0% interest amount from your graduate overdraft facility and put it in a savings account. Use the interest you make to pay off or increase repayments on other bills, a sound method if you’ve ever wondered how to improve credit score.
Grow Your Credit Rating with Our Guide to the Top Graduate Accounts
Use our no-nonsense guide, below, to compare the best graduate accounts currently available. Whether you’re in debt to your bank, and best advised to utilise accounts with the best 0% interest overdraft facilities, or you’re debt-free and looking for the best in-credit accounts to make the most of your new salary, then our guide should provide you with some good advice.
Open a 123 Graduate Account with Santander and you can get a 0% interest overdraft up to £2,000 for three years. The three year period is important here as, assuming you’re overdrawn, this will give you lots of time to clear your overdraft in full without battling monthly borrowing fees. Plan this correctly and your actions will lead to welcome boost of your credit report. This account also pays 3% interest on any in-credit savings between £200 and £2000, the best rate of all the banks.
With a Lloyds Bank Graduate Account you can also get a 0% interest overdraft up to £2,000 but this starts reducing after the first year, having a limit of £1,500 in the second year and £1,000 in the final year. You can use these reductions to your advantage though as they should help you to budget to pay your whole overdraft off within the three years – and if you’ve ever asked yourself, how can I improve credit, then this is a good way of doing just that.
The HSBC Graduate Account is a good option if you anticipate future borrowing requirements, perhaps to fund a Masters for example. With this account you can borrow up to £25,000 at 5.9% APR up to 5 years after your graduation date. Providing you have a clear plan and the financial means to make repayments against a loan then this is a very good way to address the question of how to improve credit score as it shows you are in perfect control of your finances.
Switch to a standard First Direct bank account and, even though this isn’t specifically a graduate account, as long as you bank more than £13,300 after you finish your studies, and pay in a minimum of £1,000 a month, then you’ll get a £100 switching bonus. You can then use this £100 to put towards regular payments against other debt like credit card bills. This method will help to strengthen your credit rating ahead of your next credit check.