Not being on the electoral roll will hurt your credit rating

Young adults risk missing out on the best financial deals because they are more interested in Facebook than getting themselves on to the electoral roll.

Failing to be on the electoral roll doesn’t mean just not being allowed to vote – it can also prevent people from being able to access the best credit deals and online services.

A study of 18-year-olds by credit-reference service Experian has found that they are more likely to be on Facebook than be registered to vote. Other social-media brands, such as Youtube, Snapchat, Instagram and Twitter, also have many more 18-year-old users than are on the electoral roll.

Meanwhile, more than half of all local authorities have seen a fall in the number of people aged 18 registered to vote over the past year.

“People who haven’t registered to vote may not realise it’s not just a say on who runs their local council, or the country, that they’re missing out on,” said Experian’s Jonathan Westley.

“Lenders and other service providers use the electoral roll to help check your identity online so, for example, it could help you access a wide range of services, including applying for a passport.

“It can also be used to calculate your credit rating, potentially helping you access cheaper borrowing. Young people should view registering to vote as an easy way of establishing a credit history.”