The company also launches one-stop credit building platform to its customers
Self Financial, a leading fintech company that makes credit and savings accessible to U.S. consumers, announced that in addition to Equifax and TransUnion, it now also reports rent payments to Experian. This makes Self the first and only direct-to-consumer company to report rent to all three major credit bureaus. The announcement follows Self’s February acquisition of rent and utility data furnishing company RentTrack, Inc. and its consumer division LevelCredit.
“Rent is one of the largest monthly expenses for consumers, and until now, those payments didn’t always show up on all of the major credit reports,” says James Garvey, founder and CEO of Self Financial. “Having Self tradelines with all three bureaus gives our customers maximum coverage and maximum impact so they get credit for all of their hard work and timely payments, no matter which bureau lenders work with.”
By giving consumers a direct access point to credit data furnishing, the power to build credit is put in the hands of the consumer. More than 44 million households in the U.S. are renters, but rental data makes up less than 1% of data reported to the bureaus.
Reporting alternative credit data may help play a part in changing the financial outlook for renters. For example, Fannie Mae recently released data indicating 17% of mortgage applicants that weren’t favorably recommended for a loan could have been approved if their rental payment history had been considered.
Additionally, according to FICO, payment history accounts for 35% of credit scores, so monthly rent reporting has the potential to help consumers with low or no credit scores build credit more quickly and effectively, especially in conjunction with other tradelines like credit builder accounts and secured credit cards.
In addition to rent, Self also offers reporting for utilities including cell phone, electric, water and gas payments to TransUnion.
Self also announced today that it began rolling out in Beta its comprehensive credit building platform to the company’s 1 million+ customers. Introduced only two months following Self’s acquisition of LevelCredit, the newly integrated platform gives Self’s Builders (its name for its customers) the opportunity to easily add rent and utility credit building options through the app, along with its flagship Credit Builder Account and Self Visa® secured credit card.
“It was important to us to integrate rent reporting quickly because three in four of our customers are renters and in early testing, we’ve seen strong interest from our Builders,” says Garvey.
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