CTOS: How Malaysians Can Check And Improve Their Credit Score For FREE Via MyCTOS

CTOS Malaysia is providing FREE MyCTOS Score credit reports for Malaysians whose finances may have been affected during the COVID-19 pandemic. Here’s how you can check, read, understand, redeem, and improve your latest CTOS credit score for FREE!

Let’s be honest – many of us don’t actually know much about credit scores, but it’s actually crucial in helping us with our finances. In fact, we do many little things without realising how we’re affecting one of the biggest factors to securing our livelihood.

This is even more important now, as many Malaysians and their rice bowls have been affected by the Covid-19 pandemic in one way or another. 

In this article, we want to help you understand what credit scores are all about, and how you can find out your credit score using CTOS, and what you can do to get it in the best shape.

What Is Credit Score And Why Is It Important?

So, what’s a credit score? Very simply, it is a number between 300-850 which represents your creditworthiness and how likely you are to repay debt. These are the three most important digits of your life

See, banks and lenders cannot be giving out loans to any Ali, Muthu, or Chong without first checking how financially healthy they are, and how likely they are to repay their debt. So, what do they do when they get a loan application? They check up on each person’s credit score. The higher the score, the higher the chance of getting financing requests approved

Let’s say you want to buy a house for your growing family. Or your business took a big hit during the MCO, and now you need some financial help to pay salaries. Or, touch wood, someone in your household gets into a serious medical emergency and your insurance is unable to cover the full amount.

Those are a few of the many instances where you’ll likely need some help from banks or lenders, so you definitely don’t want to be turned down just because your three-digit score is unappealing.

Having a good credit score will also mean that you’ll have more options to choose from, as more banks and lenders will prefer dealing with you. It’ll also give you leverage to negotiate a lower interest rate on a credit card or a loan.

What Is A CTOS Score And Why Is It Important? 

You’ve probably heard of CTOS in one way or another. If you haven’t, well, they’re one of the three main Credit Reporting Agencies governed under the CRA Act 2010. They’re also registered to the Registrar Office of Credit Reporting Agencies, so you know they’re the real deal. 

When it comes to credit scores, CTOS calculates these numbers based on their own proprietary models. They would look something like this:

The three most important digits of your life

This begs the question – why would this be important to you? Well, CTOS is trusted and recognized by businesses all over the country. This includes top banking and financial institutions, insurance and telco companies, statutory bodies, and even SMEs. 

Most times, these businesses would run credit score checks on potential borrowers before deciding to lend money. Some also do these very checks on job applicants, potential house tenants, and even future husbands/wives! In that sense, you can imagine just how important your CTOS score is for your livelihood. 

Also read: What Is A CTOS & CCRIS Report And What’s Their Difference?

Here Is How To Check Your Credit Score For FREE With MyCTOS

For a limited time only, you can now check your credit score for free with them. From now till 31st May 2020, they’re giving out 100,000 free MyCTOS Score credit reports (worth RM2.5 million) to help Malaysians better understand their financial positions. 

Only a few more days to redeem your MyCTOS report for FREE.

To enjoy this benefit, you only need to sign up for a CTOS ID account and redeem the report with the code. Do note that existing customers who have redeemed a free MyCTOS Score previously will not be eligible for this. 

Again, here’s what you need to do: 

  1. Click here to get to their website. 
  2. Click on the ‘REDEEM’ button. 
  3. Sign up for a CTOS ID. 
  4. Redeem the MyCTOS Score Report with the offer code. 
  5. Instantly view your credit score.

P/S: If you’re an existing user, all you need to do is to click on ‘Buy latest MyCTOS Score Report’ and key in the promo code in the promo code field. Click ‘Apply’ and instantly enjoy your FREE MyCTOS report. 

[UPDATE 1/6/2020] This campaign has ended. 

Now, How To Read Your FREE CTOS Report?

If you’ve gotten your credit score, now it’s time to understand them. If you have a good score, congratulations – keep doing what you’re doing! 

An example of how your results page would look like

If you have a bad score, you may be wondering what went wrong. To find out, you need to first understand that your score is calculated based on credit information from both CCRIS and CTOS’s database. There are five factors to this:  

  • Payment History (45%) – whether you pay your loans on time or have missed payments in the past
  • Amount Owed (20%) – the number of credit facilities and the amount owed to the banks
  • Credit History Length (7%) – the amount of time you held a credit facility (credit card, or a loan) 
  • Credit Mix (14%) – the types of loans and credit cards you hold – secured (home, car loans) vs unsecured credit (credit cards, personal loans)
  • New Credit (14%) – any approved new credit facilities in recent times

There’s a high chance that you could’ve missed your payments in the past, or that you owe a lot of money to banks. By comparing the five factors to your spending, borrowing, and repayment habits, you can likely learn where the issue lies. 

Now, what if you ended up with NO score at all? That’s because you don’t have any credit to begin with (e.g. you haven’t done anything to borrow money, you don’t even have a credit card). Without any credit, it’s impossible for banks to read your score. 

While this may seem like a good thing, well, it actually isn’t. If banks can’t read you, it will be really difficult to secure a loan if you ever need one. An easy way to circumvent this is by applying for your first credit card. (Remember to use it wisely so your credit score stays healthy!)

Related: Quiz: What’s Your Credit Card Type?

Received A Bad Score? Here Are 5 Strategies To Improve Your Credit Score

Don’t be disheartened as a low credit score isn’t the end of the world. This is actually a pretty common thing, as a lot of people don’t realise how their lifestyles and decisions can affect their own scoring. 

With discipline and diligence, it’s entirely possible to improve your credit score

Thankfully, there are ways to remedy this! You can try these 5 strategies to improve and increase your credit score: 

1. Update your personal information 

Yes, something as simple as an outdated residential address can lower your rating and prevent you from taking out that loan! If you move, don’t forget to inform companies of your new address. You should also check to make sure that credit reporting agencies have your correct and updated details.

2. Get out of debt 

Put in more effort not to default on your debts. Granted that this is easier said than done, but it’s never too early to kick your repayment speed into high gear. It also wouldn’t be a bad idea to contact your lender to see if you can amend your repayment schedule.

3. Pay your bills on time 

As your payment history makes up 45% of your score, strive to pay your bills on time. Get a calendar or automate your payments. And yes, this includes your phone, power, and electricity bills, among others. Missing payments will not only affect your credit score – you’ll have to pay penalties and late fees too! 

4. Check your financial relationships

Have you agreed to be someone’s guarantor? Are you sharing bills with someone else? Do you have a supplementary credit card? Be very careful about your financial relationships with others, as their poor repayment habits can bring down your score too. 

5. Build up your credit history

As mentioned above, having no credit score at all is just as bad as having a bad credit score. Consider getting yourself a credit card according to your lifestyle and spending pattern, and start building your credit history from there. 

It’s Not Impossible To Reach And Maintain A Good Credit Score 

It will take some time for these changes to reflect in your credit score, so the sooner you remedy this, the better. You’ll never know when you may need financing help, so it’s best to act fast. 

Most importantly, remember that your credit score plays a huge role in your life. It would be good practice to check your score once or twice a year to always be in the know. 

So… why not start now with the free MyCTOS Score Report? It’s yours with absolutely no charge till 31st May 2020, so get checking before it’s too late.