CRB Kenya may not mean much to you until an institution asks for your CRB status. Financial institutions will not grant any loan today before checking your credit score. If you have never defaulted on any loan, you have little to worry about it when checking your status.
The story is different for many Kenyans who had to apply for HELB to complete their higher education. Students go all out to convince the board to give them the highest amount possible. The reality hits after school when the board begins to demand payments.
The growth of the fintech industry in Kenya has made it so easy for anyone with an ID and registered phone number to access a loan. You do not have to talk to anyone to borrow money from an institution. You can get a soft loan in seconds on your mobile phone.
Banks have also simplified the loan application process in a bid to keep up with the competition from upcoming fintech companies. Consequently, many Kenyans are in debt and behind with some payments. If you fall into this category, start making things right.
Apart from issues in accessing loans in the future, some employers may deny you opportunities based on your CRB status. Insurance companies also check your CRB Kenya status when calculating your premiums. In short, everyone wants to know if you pay your dues on time.
We have three major credit reference bureaus in Kenya. If you are unsure about your credit score, you might need to check your status with all of them. Financial institutions list defaulters in different bureaus. Read on for the process of checking your status in the three institutions.
The first step for all credit reference bureaus is to register. For TransUnion CRB, you can visit their website or use their TransUnion Nipashe App to check your status. The app is available on Google Play Store. The easiest method is to check your status via SMS. Here is the process:
- Send an SMS with your full names to 21272.
- You will be required to pay a one-off registration fee of Kes 50 using the Paybill number 212121. Use your ID number at the account number to complete the transaction
- Request for your credit status, which TransUnion sends instantly to you
The response shows if your credit score is good or default. If you want further details, you can request for a credit report. The advantage of requesting for a report is that you can view the history of your payments for different loans.
Another service that TransUnion CRB offers is a clearance certificate. Your potential employer or lender may require proof that your credit score is good. The clearance certificate proves that you have settled all outstanding debts and have a good CRB status.
2. Metropol CRB Kenya
Metropol has a website and a mobile app (Crystobol app) that you can use to access information your credit score. However, like other bureaus, you can get your status easily via SMS. The registration fee is Kes.50, which is payable via Paybill number 220388. Your ID number is the account number.
After a confirmation that your registration is successful, you receive a unique code, a link, and reference number. Here now is the process of checking your status:
- Dial *433# on your mobile phone
- Provide your personal identification number as requested
- Metrolpol will send your status immediately via SMS.
The alternative is to log into the Metropol CRB website and check your status or download the app. The advantage of using the website is that you can request a credit report or clearance certificate. The report and certificate come at a higher fee, that is Kes 250 and Kes 2200 respectively.
You need to understand how Metropol awards score to understand your status. The CRB gives a score ranging from 200 to 900 points. If your score is below 400, lenders know you are a defaulter and will not issue any new loans to you.
A score about 400 is good but lenders are still cautious when giving you a loan. The best score is close to 900, which guarantee you cheap and fast loans.
3. CreditInfo CRB
CreditInfo provides a free credit report every 12 months. However, the bureau charges you for every other report you request within 12 months of requesting your first free report. Online applications for a credit report attract a verification fee as well.
CreditInfo provides reports via email. You will not have the same convenience of using an SMS or app to check your status. Visit the CreditInfo website and fill out the credit report application form. You can do it for a company/business or an individual.
The process involves attaching a copy of your ID. A scan or photo of the ID card is good enough. Provide a valid email address where the bureau shall send the report.
As mentioned, the first report is free. The second will cost you Kes.350 if you apply before 12 months elapse. CreditInfo offers an additional monitoring service, which means that you get an email notification for any changes to your credit history.
If you want to keep up with your status throughout the year, the bureau charges an annual fee of Kes.2200. Ensure that you tick this option when submitting your application form. CreditInfo allows you to file a dispute form if you receive a credit report with incorrect information.
An individual’s CRB status determines the ease of access to new loans, insurance premiums, and some job opportunities. As many financial institutions turn to mobile loans, CRB integration is mandatory. Borrowers are looking for an easy to determine their CRB Kenya status. Lenders, on the other hand, need an easy way of verifying an individual’s credit worthiness when issuing loans. The process should take seconds and hence the need for CRB integration into websites and apps. Kwetu Hub teaches CRB integration as part of the API integration course to help financial institutions verify credit scores fast when issuing loans.