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Loans Money Advice

Money Advice

If you are experiencing a change in circumstance that has resulted in you struggling to honour your agreed BERKSHIRE CREDIT UNION loan repayments, please contact us as soon as possible, we will always try and help our members without it having an adverse effect on your credit report.
Please remember we are lending other members money and therefore we must and always will do everything legally possible to collect outstanding loans.

Credit score and status

Credit scores are used by lenders including BERKSHIRE CREDIT UNION to judge how likely you are to repay your loan. Your credit status is based on a number of different factors including your previous dealings and financial habits. Most lenders use credit scores to decide whether to lend you money and, if so, how much.

The main agencies are CallCredit, Equifax and Experian. They assess your credit status by looking at a wide range of factors including:

  • history of borrowing and repayment
  • financial assets and liabilities
  • any County Court Judgments (CCJs) etc you have against you
Lenders do use and interpret your credit status differently so you may be accepted by BERKSHIRE CREDIT UNION even if rejected by another lender. However applying to multiple lenders at the same time is likely to be considered a negative feature and may impact your rating.

Remember, for its members, BERKSHIRE CREDIT UNION does not just use the score to decide, we proactively adjust them to reflect your commitment to your fellow members.

It is a really good idea to check your credit report carefully; there may be mistakes which could be affecting your credit rating. You are entitled to request mistakes to be corrected by writing to the relevant lender.

You can obtain your Statutory Credit Report for a small £2 fee from any of the three credit rating agencies. CallCredit though, offers a free service called Noddle.

Problems with Illegal Money Lending (Loan Sharks)

Not sure what a loan shark is? If you can answer yes to one or more of these questions you might be borrowing from a loan shark:
  • Did they offer you a cash loan?
  • Did they not give you paperwork?
  • Did they add huge amounts of interest or APR to your loan?
  • Have they threatened you?
  • Are you scared of people finding out?
  • Have they taken your bank card, benefit card, passport, watch or other valuables from you
Stop Loan Sharks investigate and prosecute loan sharks. Their official title is the England Illegal Money Lending Team. They are the lead organisation in England with the power to prosecute loan sharks and illegal money lenders. Since 2004, they have helped over 26,000 people who have borrowed from loan sharks.

So, if you are having problems with illegal debt give them a call on 0300 555 2222 or visit their website.

General Money Advice

Disclaimer: These links are provided as an information service to the Public and our members. They are outside of BERKSHIRE CREDIT UNIONs control. Please note, websites are information resources and are not usually definitive statements of law. In the event of difficulty seek advice from a Government Agency/ Independent Advice centre.

Citizens Advice Bureau

The CAB offer advice services for all sorts of issues, but Debt and Money advice can be sought at their website or through your local CAB office. Please give them a call first, as an appointment may be needed. Take a look at their website for general advice and local office details.

The Money Advice Service - 'Talk to MA'

Offering free, impartial and independent advice. They provide a lot of self help information at their website - no strings attached!

National Debtline

This helpline provides free confidential and independent advice on how to deal with debt problems.

Some important advice

In our opinion, it is best to avoid firms that send texts, use unsolicited 'cold calling', advertise on Radio/TV or send you direct mail as 'hidden' charges or legal complications may result. These include Debt Management Companies who may use tactics that some consumer bodies regard as 'unethical' or 'unfair'. There are lots of companies out there who say they can get your debts written off for you, or get compensation for you by claiming that your credit agreements are unenforceable. Be very careful, a lot of these firms charge you large up-front fees for each agreement they agree to check, but with no guarantee that they will be successful in challenging your agreements.

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Opening Hours:

Mon - Fri10:00am - 14:00pm

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62 Portman Road, Reading, RG30 1EA


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Berkshire Credit Union is the trading name of Community Savings & Loans (Berkshire Credit Union) Ltd Authorised and Regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority and the Prudential Regulation Autority - Firm no 457045