If you suspect your credit history isn't squeaky clean, the best option is to apply to see it. Companies such as Experian and Equifax can do this.
It's best to do this before you ask for a loan, as credit companies will be able to see every time you have applied, and multiple applications will arouse suspicions.
'Ten years ago 90% of people applied to us after being refused credit now it's more like 30%,' says Jones. 'To improve your score ensure you are on the electoral register, outstanding debts are paid off and add a note to any bad reports that you can explain with sickness or redundancy.'
Abbey National also recommends providing as many, non-mobile contact numbers as possible, as this helps build the lender's confidence.