Young people across the country are harming their credit rating by not registering to vote in the upcoming election, a study by uSwitch.com has found.
Almost 6 million 18-24 year-olds will be eligible to vote in May election, but according to research by the BBC just half of them are registered to vote.
The uSwitch survey shows that a quarter (25%) of 18-34 year-olds are unaware that not being on the electoral register has a negative impact on an individual’s credit rating. Lenders use the information to confirm names and address of credit applicants.
Of the 2,000 18-34 year-olds surveyed, many did not understand the consequences of having a bad credit rating:
- 54% didn’t know that having a bad credit rating makes it harder to secure a mobile phone contract
- 33% thought bank loan applications were unaffected by credit ratings
- 30% believed that credit ratings don’t affect credit card applications.
Many thought that unrelated factors affected their credit ratings:
- age (45%)
- marital status (35%)
- Facebook profiles (26%).
David Mann, money expert at uSwitch.com, said:
“The fact is, you can never have an ‘excellent’ credit score without being registered to vote, as lenders use this information to verify the names and addresses of applicants.
“A poor credit rating can be the final nail in the coffin for young people who are already facing challenging conditions, with youth unemployment at an all-time high and many trapped in ‘generation rent’.”