What credit rating do you need for a mobile phone contract?

Last Modified 14th of February 2023

Technically, having a phone on contract is a form of credit because you are using the phone’s services each month and then paying for that usage at the end of month. Fortunately, getting a mobile phone contract is one of the easiest forms of credit that you can get, so it is a great idea if you don’t have a great credit history.

The reason that getting a phone contract is easy is simple; the mobile phone industry is incredibly competitive and the profit margin that phone companies make on your service usage is very high.

How good does your credit need to be?

There is no set credit rating to get a mobile phone contract; being accepted depends on a number of factors.

Firstly, service providers like to see that you can afford the payments. If you have poor credit, but you can show that you have a good, consistent and above all reliable income, you have a good chance of being accepted. On the other hand, if you have a fair credit history but no income, you could actually struggle.

Improving your chances

The other risk factor for the phone company is the cost of the free phone. If you have very poor credit, it might be worthwhile to apply for a sim-only contract. These contracts are very low risk for the phone company, so even people with very poor credit should have a good chance of success.

If you do need a free phone, consider going for the cheapest model you can, and on a low cost contract; if you pay some part towards your handset that may also help.

Of course, some phone companies have more lenient requirements too. If you are struggling to get a contract, consider researching which operator currently has the easiest credit checking criteria and apply accordingly.

How to access your credit report for free

There are three main credit reference agencies in the UK – Experian, Equifax, and TransUnion – and each of these agencies must provide you with a free credit report once a year. To access your report, you’ll need to visit the agency’s website and provide some personal information to verify your identity. Once you’ve verified your identity, you should be able to access your report and review all the information contained within it.

What can I do to improve my credit score quickly?

If your credit rating isn’t good enough to qualify for a mobile phone contract, there are a number of things you can do to improve it. One of the most important things is to make sure that you’re registered on the electoral roll. You should also try to make sure that you’re making all of your current payments on time and in full, as missed or late payments can have a negative impact on your credit rating.

If you have existing debts, you may want to consider a debt consolidation loan to help you pay them off more quickly and easily. Additionally, you can reduce your credit utilisation by paying off existing balances and reducing your credit card usage. Finally, you can also consider obtaining a credit builder card, which is specifically designed to help people improve their credit rating by demonstrating responsible credit usage.

Following these tips can help you to improve your credit rating and increase your chances of being approved for a mobile phone contract.