More than 1.5 million people have lived more than 45 years having never borrowed a penny from a bank or lender.  However, this commendable existence could come back to bite as many of these credit virgins may struggle to secure a mortgage or even a mobile phone contract.

A credit score is a three digit number between 0 and 999 which is allocated to every adult in the UK and is used by banks to determine whether they should trust someone to pay back a mortgage, loan or credit card

However, there is a common misconception that opting not to use a credit card or loan makes you a more trust worthy borrower to a bank.  In fact, it does the opposite.

According to the research from Amigo loans, more than 13 million UK adults are oblivious to the fact that it is actually more difficult to secure credit, including a mortgage, if you’ve never used credit in the past.

The reason for this is that banks want trustworthy borrowers with a proven history of paying back debts – credit virgins simply don’t have the credentials.

The ignorance surrounding credit scores is apparent on a wide scale with only 12% of people in the UK having ever checked their own personal credit score.

With increasing financial pressure, families are buckling under the costs of everyday life. Missing bills may seem menial, but these can dramatically affect your credit score.  Nearly a quarter (22%) of those in the 45-54 age bracket have missed a payment, such as mobile phone payment or gas bill, which has affected their credit score and one in 20 have held a joint account with someone with

Glen Crawford, CEO at Amigo Loans, which commissioned the study said: “It’s so often that we hear customers ask why their bank wouldn’t lend to them when they’re so good with money – they’ve never had a credit card in their life, they’d say.  However, as ironic as it sounds, if you’ve never used credit, it’s often hard to access it.

“Many banks and lenders use credit scores as an indication of how likely you’d be to repay a debt, whether that be a £5,000 loan or a £5 overdraft.  But, if like millions of credit virgins, you’ve never demonstrated that you can be trusted, they shut the door. This is unfair and leaves lots of deserving, trustworthy people without access to finance such as a mortgage.” 

Research from Sainsbury’s Bank into the cost of a wedding has revealed that couples who have married in the past five years claim to have spent on average £13,200 on their wedding, and those younger hitchers aged between 18-34, who are more likely to be first-timers are spending an average of £21,109.

Analysis of Sainsbury’s Bank’s loans data shows that the average amount borrowed for a wedding, according to borrowers is £8,936.

However, the true cost of the wedding is closer to £52,000, when all the expenses – including those incurred by the guests are added together.

On average, guests can spend up to £423 on attending a wedding – when all the following expenses are calculated.

For those who attend the stag or hen do, an average of £92 can be added to this total, bringing the full wedding-guest experience to over £500.

With the average number of wedding guests now put at around 92, this could mean that the true cost of a wedding is well over £52,000 – not including any stag or hen festivities. This is almost four-fold the reported average wedding cost.

Simon Ranson, Head of Banking, Sainsbury’s Bank says: “Our research shows that weddings are expensive for guests as well as the hosts, so planning ahead and budgeting is a must for anyone planning or attending one.

”Loans are a popular way to fund a wedding but credit cards provide another option. For example, there are cards available offering no interest on purchases – including ours which offers 27 months.  If you take out one of our cards, make sure you pay the balance off in the promotional period to avoid paying any interest.”

The research showed that paying off a wedding takes on average, four months, rising to a mean of 10 months for 18-34 year-olds. However, 4% of those who had married took one-two years to pay of their wedding, and 3% took two to three years.

Sadly, 6% of those who got married became divorced or separated whilst they were still paying off their wedding, though for 29% who got married then split up, at least the wedding had been paid off by this time. Happily, most respondents were still together.

A brand new credit card name has hit the best buy tables today – namely nuba – powered by card giant MBNA.

There are two cards to choose from – a market leading 41 month 0% balance transfer deal with a one off fee of 3.49% – the good news is that if you qualify and transfer at least £1000 you’ll be entitled to a £20 Amazon gift card.

nuba has also launched an all round card with 25 months interest free on purchases and balance transfers – the transfer fee is 2.39% but again there’s an option to get your hands on a £20 Amazon gift card if you switch at least £1000 within 60 days of opening your nuba card account.

Mark Elliott from MBNA said: “With nuba, what you see is what you get. nuba is a no-fuss brand. Simple products with competitive rates and attractive benefits. nuba allows us to use the strength and experience of MBNA to do some exciting new things.”

For more details www.nubacards.co.uk

Your credit score is the three digit number that helps everyone from mortgage companies to mobile phone providers decide how trustworthy you are when it comes to paying them back the money you owe them.

A survey of 1100 people by MyCreditMonitor (www.mycreditmonitor.co.uk) found that 42.5% of those questioned expected their credit score to have some impact on their financial decisions in the coming year.

However, while this seems to demonstrate a general awareness of how important credit scores might be, the survey also finds that others seem to contradict this what with an astonishing 6 out of 10 people admitting to not knowing what their credit score was.

Moreover, 40% of those consumers who use credit wouldn’t check their credit score before applying for a credit card, loan or other type of borrowing. This is despite the process being quick and easy to do online.

These figures from the survey suggest that while consumers seem to know that their credit score is important, most of them don’t actually know what their credit score is!

MyCreditMonitor wants to get rid of this contradiction, urging consumers to become savvier when it comes to keeping their credit activity in good shape.

Jenny Walker of MyCreditMonitor, said, “Credit scores are nothing new and we all have one. It seems that a large percentage of consumers are aware of how significant their credit score is, and the impact it could have on the important decisions they make. Yet the majority of people don’t actually know what their credit score is. Worse still, it seems many of us are still applying for credit without even checking our credit score to find out what chance we have of being accepted, or if we’re in a position to get a better deal than the one we were applying for.”