Until recently rental payment history was not reported to the major credit bureaus and therefore wasn't included on your credit report. Because it was not included on the report, the payment history was not included in the credit score.
Experian, one of the 3 majors credit reporting companies, recently announced that it will be the first major credit reporting agency to include these payments in its credit reports.
To get the data Experian acquired RentBureau in 2010. RentBureau is the largest and most widely used credit bureau for the multifamily industry. A national network of 45 property companies – including large apartment owners and managers – collect data about rental payments and, in turn, automatically report that payment history to RentBureau every 24 hours.
Will this be good or bad for your credit score? Initially, only positive rental histories will be reported but it is expected that in 2012 they will start reporting negative credit histories. If you make your rental payments on time this should help you credit score and lower your borrowing costs.
Will the other credit agency's Equifax and TansUnion start using rental data? It's uncertain at this time but if one uses the data I'm sure the other 2 bureaus won't be far behind.
A number of articles about this change have been written recently. For more information you can see the articles in the Baltimore Sun, Bankrate.com or AOLOriginal.
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