What to do if the cell phone contract is not accepted?

Have you applied for a new phone contract and been rejected? Don't worry, there are options…. A new phone contract may not seem like a big deal; after all, it's not exactly a mortgage or a credit card.

However, when you apply for a new contract, the provider will still run a credit check, and a rejection can be a big shock.
So, if you have been rejected for a cell phone contract, what options do you have?

Check your credit data

If you really have no idea why you were rejected after a credit check, the very first thing you need to do is check your credit file.
You can find out how to do this here and you can see exactly what the phone provider was looking at when they made their decision.
Once you've seen your credit report, the reasons for your rejection may be much clearer. In this case, see our guide to improving your score for cleaning tips.
However, if there is no valid reason for rejection, then it might be worth checking your report on all the main providers (Experian, Equifax and TransUnion) to make sure none of them have incorrect information about you. If you discover errors, ask to have them corrected.

What if you need a phone now?

Of course, understanding why you were rejected won't help you with your immediate problem of getting a mobile contract.
But if you have an old handset you can use, or if you can buy or borrow it, you have a few other options.

Providers have changed a lot in recent years and there are some good deals to be had. Some PAYG SIMs even offer a package of benefits – including a certain amount of data, texts and minutes – provided you top up a fixed amount each month.
There will be no credit checks with this type of business, so you don't have to worry about being rejected. The downside, however, is that you could pay more each month than you would with a contract and it won't help you strengthen your credit score and get approved next time around.

A better option, therefore, might be to look into monthly SIM deals.
There will almost certainly still be a credit check, but because the provider won't give you a phone, because the contract length is so much shorter, and because you're likely to pay lower bills, there's a much better chance of being accepted.
Importantly, paying your monthly SIM bill on time shows that you can manage a contract meaningfully, which helps with your credit score and improves your chances of being accepted for a standard contract the next time around.

Should I just apply again?

No. The problem with failing any kind of credit check is that any credit search leaves a footprint on your file and this can temporarily make it even more difficult to get credit or be accepted into a contract.
This means if you just start applying for every contract you see in hopes of being accepted, you have even less chance of being accepted.
But do not worry. Take some time to refresh your credit, prove that you are trustworthy with a SIM-only business, and soon you can successfully conclude a contract.

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