We should follow the example of the USA – US citizens get access to one free credit report each year so why can't we. Although we've recently been given quicker access to credit files, you still have to pay £2 for each report you get from a credit reference agency and sometimes you need one from all of the three major ones just to get a rounded view of your credit history (a total of £6 a year).

Why is this idea important?

All the experts scream out about how we should check our credit reports at least once a year to check for things that can be fixed before applying for a new credit card, loan or mortgage (and of course to look for identity fraud) but the fact we have to pay for them is probably the reason people don’t check them. If people could take better control of their credit histories, they would understand how vital they are to getting cheaper APRs and might be more cautious about their borrowing (something we need if we are to avoid another recession).

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