One in twelve people have missed a mobile phone bill payment, according to figures from the Debt Advisory Centre – potentially putting them at risk of being rejected for bigger lending like a mortgage.
Many people might not even consider their mobile phone bill to be a form of credit, but when you use your phone to make calls or send texts, and pay for that usage at the end of the month, it is in essence a line of credit.
Fail to pay, and you could suffer a black mark on your credit history that will take literally years to erase.
According to the DAC’s research, 8% of all UK adults – roughly four million people – have missed a mobile phone bill in the past, paying either late or not at all.
More than a third (35%) said their mobile bill had to take a back seat because of other financial commitments during the month.
However, this might be a case of false prioritising, as the banks increasingly look to your mobile phone contract as evidence of your ability to pay your debts on time every month.
DAC spokesman Ian Williams said: “It may not seem like the end of the world at the time, but missing a mobile phone payment could cause problems for a customer further down the line.
“This missed payment will show up on their credit record, potentially meaning they miss out on the best deals on the market when they look for a credit card, loan or mortgage.
“Even worse, if they default [on] their mobile payment, they could be turned down for credit altogether.
“If you’re thinking of applying for a loan or mortgage, it’s important you keep on top of all of your credit agreements – including your mobile phone bill.”