When you first move to the UK, it will be hard to get a credit card, a financed car, get a mortgage or get a bank loan. This is due to the lack of a credit history you have in the UK. Unfortunately, you cannot transfer your credit rating from your home country to the UK. So, you will essentially be starting again.
Without a present credit history, lenders won’t have any information on you to determine whether you can manage credit responsibly and may therefore class you as high risk, making them reluctant to lend to you.
In this blog post, we share how to build up some positive credit history in the UK to help you with your short-term goals such as obtaining a credit card or long-term goals... buying a house! Please note, we are not financial advisors and this blog post is simply a guide. Please consult a professional for further information.
Most lenders require evidence of proof of a regular income. So, being employed by the NHS you will be able to evidence a consistent income.
Most lenders will not give you credit without proof of a UK address. So, the first step is to secure a permanent residence. Please note, when you go to open a UK high street bank account you will need to show proof of address. If you are yet to secure permanent accommodation, you can evidence your Air B n B’s address.
Although this is not essential to apply for credit, it is advisable that you open a bank account in the UK as it will make you more attractive to lenders. Having a UK bank account means that you can pay bills by direct debit, receive your salary and transfer money abroad. If you would like our advice on how to open a bank account in the UK, please do read our blog post here.
If you can show that you manage credit responsibly, you are more likely to get better interest rates in the future. You have a number of options available to you when you first arrive:
Applying for lots of credit in a short space of time and being rejected is not good for your credit rating. You can try leaving between three and six months between applications to hep repair your credit rating, however, the process will take longer. One example is a mobile phone contract, car insurance, car finance and a credit card can count towards this.
When you do get issued a credit card, you should try to minimise any debt on your cards. As a rule of thumb, you should try to keep the debt on a card under 30% of your credit card limit.
If you are an international doctor who has decided that you would like our support in securing an NHS service post, email your CV to [email protected] and we can support you in securing an NHS job and on your journey to the UK today.
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Focus, E. (2020). Moving or Moved to the UK? A Guide to Credit and Financial Freedom | Expat Focus. [online] Expatfocus.com. Available at: https://www.expatfocus.com/guide-to-credit-and-financial-freedom-in-the-uk [Accessed 22 Jan. 2020].
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