Have you been paying rent for years, but don’t have much of a credit score?
If so, you may be able to boost your credit score with a rent credit report. When your rent payments show up on your report, and if you have been consistent without any delinquencies, it will boost your credit.
How Does Paying Rent Help with Credit?
Any time that you consistently pay a bill, it can help boost your credit. The problem is that you can’t report the rent payments you’re making on your own. You have to have a third-party do it for you (more on that below).
What’s interesting is that under 1% of credit files contain rental entries despite all three major credit bureaus including the information on a report if they receive it.
How Much Will Your Credit Score Increase?
Sometimes, it doesn’t boost your score at all, but it depends on how rental payment information is calculated. For example, FICO scores often don’t include rent payments when calculating a credit score unless the calculation is from:
- FICO 9
- FICO XD
And when looking at your VantageScore, it will use your rental history to calculate your score.
How much will your score increase?
If you have made consistent payments that are on-time and the score is calculated using an algorithm that includes payments, your score can increase by as much as 35 – 50 points on average.
Your score may increase less or more than this amount.
How Long Will It Take for My Score to Change?
Reports suggest that scores will increase in as little as 10 days, but it really depends on when all of the information is received and updated by the credit bureau. In the longestcase scenario, it will take a month for your score to change.
But keep in mind that your rental score may not have a major impact on your credit if you have excellent credit.
There are plenty of people with 700+ credit scores that may not benefit from their rental information being added to their credit report.
Who is a rent credit report ideal for?
- Anyone with a credit score that is in the 650 or lower range
- Anyone who has little-to-no data on their credit report
- Anyone that has been at the same address for several months
Now, if you’re late on your payments or you just moved into your rental, having your rental information included on your credit report won’t do you much good.
How to Report Rent Payments to Credit Bureaus
If you want to submit your rent credit report, you’ll have to do it through one of the main rent reporting companies. These companies will demand a fee for the service, but they will have your rent added into your credit report.
There are three main companies (and quite a few others) that will be happy to offer this service to you:
RentReporters has just added Equifax to their reporting, and they’re one of the top companies offering rent reporting. The way the company works is that you send in an application with all of your basic information:
- Birth date
- Social Security number
- Landlord’s information
Once that is complete, the company will contact the landlord and verify all of your rental information for the last 24 months. You’ll have to sign up for a fee of $94.95, and then monthly reporting will cost $9.95.
But the company takes care of everything after the initial setup to ensure that you’ll have your rental information submitted month after month.
RentTrack reports to all three major credit bureaus, and the company makes it easy to cancel your reporting at any time. But when using RentTrack, you’ll be changing the way that you pay your rent.
It’s a process.
You see, you’ll be paying your rent through the platform’s own rental payment system. When using this system, you’ll be paying right through RentTrack, making it much easier for the company to log and monitor all of your rental payments.
There’s also the option of reporting just a 12-month period of rent for $49.95 or a 24-month period of rent for $89.95.
If you want to be able to pay through the company’s platform, they’ll charge you $6.95 per payment, so you’ll be paying $83.4 over a 12-month period.
3. Rental Kharma
Rental Kharma will work to put your last 24 months of rent on your report, and there is a 100% money back guarantee, too. When you use the service, you’ll pay a one-time fee of $25 to verify your rent history and your own verification.
And then you will have to pay $6.95 per month for your reporting.
A fee of $5 is assessed for any past reporting, so if you wanted to report 24 months of rental history, you’ll pay $120 to do this.
Otherwise, for any future payments you’ll be charged $6.95 every quarter for the service. When using Rental Kharma, the company will be reporting your rental history to TransUnion.
Every month, payments are verified, and your information is updated and submitted to the credit bureau.
When comparing each service, you’ll find that RentTrack is the one that stands out as being truly different. The company requires you to make payments through their portal, but all of the payments will be submitted to all three credit bureaus.
Rental Kharma is lagging behind the rest since RentReporters has started to add Equifax to their credit reporting. And with RentReporters, you don’t have to make payments through their portal, so this is one of the benefits if you don’t like changes to the way you make payments.
Cost-wise, RentReporters is the most expensive month-to-month. It’s a service that works, but you’ll have to pay a little extra for it. For our comparison, we think their service is the best overall value for rental reporting. In fact, we are still using their service and will report our results soon on how our credit score has improved.
When your credit score is stopping you from getting a credit card or taking out a loan, rent information may be able to help speed up the process of improving your credit score. It’s a service that a lot of people have used to increase their credit score by 40 points, on average.