Directory of UK lenders who will accept applications from people with bad credit history
Mortgages, loans and credit cards suitable for people with poor credit rating

Previous or current credit problems don't have to hold you back from getting the finance you want. Even if you've had CCJs, arrears, are self employed or have no credit history - fortunately there are a few lenders who specialise in offering mortgages, credit cards and loans for people with a bad credit rating.

Specialist lenders understand that just because you have run into financial problems in the past, it doesn't necessarily follow that you will be unable to meet your financial commitments in the future. They provide poor credit loans to many types of applicants - even discharged bankrupts - as long as the borrower can afford to meet their monthly repayments. Loans are available for both tenants and homeowners with bad credit history.

If you have run into serious arrears, perhaps because you get divorced, fall ill or lose your job, you're likely to have a poor credit rating. Minor blips on your credit record, such as missing a credit card payment, failing to pay a parking ticket or forgetting to settle a utilities bill, can also affect your eligibility for credit.

Most mainstream lenders will reject applications from people who have a bad credit history such as County Court Judgements CCJs, defaults and bankruptcy. You can also be rejected for a personal loan or mortgage for a wide range of relatively minor problems such as not being on the electoral roll, not having a bank account, receiving income benefits and even making several applications for credit in a short space of time. Figures from analyst Datamonitor estimate that 9.1m people were refused credit by mainstream lenders in 2005.

Getting credit can sometimes seem like an impossible task and it's easy to get despondent if you're turned down. The truth is no one has a right to get credit or to be given a reason why credit has not been granted.

The adverse credit market has become far less competitive in recent years with the differentia in rates between bad credit and good credit products increasing significantly. However, a few reputable lenders still offer bad credit loans, credit cards and mortgages for people with bad debts, CCJs or even a past bankruptcy on their credit file.

Contrary to popular belief, there is no such thing as a credit blacklist detailing people who shouldn't be lent money. Each lender will have their own criteria for determining whether to accept you as a customer, they will use the information you provide on the application form and the contents of your credit file to make a calculation on your "risk" as a potential customer.

Use the search facility above to find UK lenders who will accept applications from people with bad credit history.

  • Each time you apply for credit, the lender will carry out a search with a reference agency to help establish whether or not you are creditworthy.

  • Lenders use credit scoring to decide who to lend money to. You earn a certain number of points for each bit of information in your application.

  • A few simple tips on how you could give your credit score a push in the right direction.

  • Research suggests that those "systematically denied credit by mainstream lenders" will increase from 7 million to 8.6 million by 2011.

  • Remortgaging or taking out a loan to consolidate debt is a popular way of reducing credit card and loan repayments. But do the risks outweigh the gains?

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