Back to FAQs category About Credit About bad credit Searches on your credit report Your credit card application Using your credit card Managing your account Statements, payments & interest Safety & Security Photocard Secured Card Aspire® Elite Card Mobile App Complaints Payment Protection Insurance (PPI) Subject Access Request Payment Services Directive (PSD2) Persistent Debt About bad credit What is bad credit? Every lender makes its own decision about the risks it's willing to take in extending offers of credit. Your credit report dictates whether they'll provide you with credit, but also what rate you'll get. In general, credit scores reward responsible behaviour, so if your bills are late and your balances are near your credit limits, it'll negatively impact your credit score and make you appear a higher risk to lenders. Having a 'bad' credit score does restrict what credit products you'll be eligible for and could make getting a mortgage, a phone contract, credit cards or loans more difficult or costly. The good news is that you can turn a bad credit score into a good one, with time and effort. Check your credit score and credit report for free with CreditWise. How do I turn a bad credit score into a good one? There are lots of ways to repair bad credit and improve your credit score. The first step is understanding what factors are affecting it. Check your score and credit report for free with CreditWise. Turning a bad credit score into a good one does take time, but ways to do it include making payments on time, keeping the percentage of your total available credit used low, spacing out credit applications and using eligibility checkers before applying to see if you qualify for the credit product you need or want. If you're worried about money and need help managing your finances better, we can provide advice and support. Can Capital One help me repair bad credit? Bad credit doesn't always mean you can't get a credit card. Some lenders, like Capital One, offer credit-building cards especially designed to help people improve their credit ratings. Even if you have a poor credit score, you could be eligibile for our Capital One Classic card. It can help you improve your credit score, if you use it sensibly, making your monthly minimum payments on time and staying below your credit limit. Not doing so could harm your credit score even more. Try QuickCheck and find out if you'll be accepted for a Capital One credit card before you apply, without affecting your credit score.