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Credit Reference Agencies Find which lenders use which agency

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IMPORTANT NOTE: This table was updated in 2014. It is primarily based on the real life experiences of MoneySavers, as banks and companies who search credit reference agencies are often reluctant to give this information out. With thanks to forumite Underground, for compiling MoneySavers' experiences in the forum.


There are three main credit reference agencies compiling info on us; Equifax, Experian and Callcredit. Apply for credit in any form and lenders will ask one, two or all three of them for information.

Credit Reference Agencies

As different agencies have different details, it's possible to increase your acceptability by picking a lender using the right agency, although remember this list can change regularly, call and check with a lender if you want to make a specific application.

The following table details which credit reference agency each lender uses. The tables have been sorted according to lender/credit type. Utilising this takes some patience. If you've applied for credit with a lender and been turned down, it may be worth then choosing a lender working with a different agency. This won't always work, but it helps.

If you're a MoneySaving newbie, please only read this in conjunction with my ‘Your Credit Rating, How it works, How to beat it' article, which explains the system in its entirety. You can also discuss this table with other MoneySavers in this chat forum from which much of the information in the tables has been sourced.

Filter tables by Agency:

Select an agency from the choice above.
*Note: Lenders that do not use the selected agency will not appear below.

Bank Current Accounts and the Credit Reference Agencies Used

Lender
Credit Reference Agency used for credit searches
Equifax
Experian
Callcredit
Allied Irish Bank (First Trust Bank)
   
Bank of Cyprus
   
Bank of Ireland (incl Post Office)
   
Barclays
   
Birmingham Midshires
   
Cambridge BS
   
Chelsea BS
   
Citibank
   
Co-operative Bank (incl Smile & Britannia)
   
Coventry Building Society
   
Danske Bank
   
Halifax & Bank of Scotland
 
HSBC (incl First Direct)
 
ICICI
   
Leeds Building Society
   
Lloyds
 
Marks & Spencer
Metrobank
   
Morgan Stanley
 
Nationwide
   
Natwest
 
Norwich & Peterborough BS
 
Royal Bank of Scotland
 
Sainsbury's Bank
   
Santander
   
Skipton BS
   
TSB
   
Yorkshire Bank & Clydesdale Bank
   

credit cards and the Credit Reference Agencies Used

Credit Card Provider
Credit Reference Agency used for credit searches
Equifax
Experian
Callcredit
Allied Trust Bank (incl Saga & First Trust Bank)
   
American Express
 
Bank of Ireland
   
Barclaycard (incl Hilton HHonors & Priority Club)
 
Capital One
Co-operative Bank (incl Smile)
   
Danske Bank
   
Halifax & Bank of Scotland (incl Aqua)
 
HSBC (incl First Direct & M&S)
 
HSBC (for John Lewis card)
   
Lloyds
 
MBNA (incl AA, Aadvantage, lastminute.com, Leeds BS, Miles & More, Norwich & Peterborough BS)
 
Metrobank
   
Nationwide
 
Natwest
 
Post Office (Bank of Ireland)
   
Royal Bank of Scotland (incl Ulster Bank)
 
Sainsbury's
   
Santander
 
Sygma Bank (Creation, Flybe card, Marriott Rewards, Maximiles)
   
Tesco
TSB
 
Vanquis
   
Virgin Money
 
Yorkshire Bank & Clydesdale Bank
   

Mobile phones, landlines, television, broadband & utilities and the Credit Reference Agencies Used

Provider
Credit Reference Agency used for credit searches
Equifax
Experian
Callcredit
3
BT
   
E.ON
   
Carphone Warehouse (Talkmobile)
 
O2
 
Orange (EE)
 
Southern Electric (SSE)
 
T-Mobile
   
Tesco Mobile
   
Virgin Mobile
   
Virgin Media
   
Vodafone
 

Catalogues and the Credit Reference Agencies Used

Catalogue
Credit Reference Agency used for credit searches
Equifax
Experian
Callcredit
Candid Collections Ltd (incl JD Williams, Jacamo, Simply Be)
 
Findel plc (incl Ace, Express Gifts, Health & Home Shopping, Kleeneze, Studio)
   
Next Directory
   
Otto Group (Freemans, Grattan)
 
Redcats (Daxon, LaRedoute, Vertbaudet)
   
Shop Direct Group (isme, K&Co, Littlewoods, Very)
   

Lenders and the Credit Reference Agencies Used

Lender
Credit Reference Agency used for credit searches
Equifax
Experian
Callcredit
Black Horse
   
Clydesdale Bank
   
Creation Loans
   
Everyday Loans
   
Halifax
   
HSBC (incl First Direct)
   
Lloyds
   
M&S
 
Nationwide
Natwest
 
Post Office
   
Rate Setter (Peer to peer)
 
Royal Bank of Scotland
 
Sainsbury's
 
Santander
 
Tesco
Wonga
 
Zopa
   

Store cards and the Credit Reference Agencies Used

Lender
Credit Reference Agency used for credit searches
Equifax
Experian
Callcredit
Argos Store Card
   
Brighthouse
   
Creation Financial Services (Currys, PC World, Dell, dfs, Dreams, ScS, Selfridges)
 
Ikano Financial Services (IKEA, New Look, Oasis, Warehouse)
   
Next
 
V12 Finance (aria, DABS.com, Direct Golf UK, Scan, Wheelies Direct)
   

Mortgages and the Credit Reference Agencies Used

Mortgage Provider
Credit Reference Agency used for credit searches
Equifax
Experian
Callcredit
Co-operative Bank (incl Britannia BS)
   
Halifax
   
Hanley Economic BS
   
HSBC
   
Nationwide
   
Natwest
 
Norwich & Peterborough BS
   
Royal Bank of Scotland
 
Santander
   
Skipton BS
   
Yorkshire BS
   

Motor finance and the Credit Reference Agencies Used

Motor Finance Provider
Credit Reference Agency used for credit searches
Equifax
Experian
Callcredit
ALD Automotive Finance
   
Alpera Financial Services
   
Black Horse
   
RCI Financial Services
   
Santander Consumer Motor Finance
   
Toyota Financial Services
   
Volkswagen Financial
   

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