Equifax Rental Screening Solutions Report Errors

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18 Apr, 2024
Daniel Cohen
12 min
205
Woman asking lawyer about Equifax tenant screening errors in her report

If Equifax Rental Screening Errors Derailed Your Plans, Seize a Second Chance with Background Check Lawyers!

Equifax rental screening errors can shatter dreams of a perfect life. You may be living in a nightmare if you’ve received rental rejections due to Equifax mistakes, but there's hope! Discover how a background check attorney can empower you to rectify errors, regain control, and secure the rental you deserve.

Equifax Rental Screening Solutions

Equifax, TransUnion, and Experian are all consumer reporting agencies (CRA). If you decide to rent a property, you will likely have to submit to a rental screening conducted by a CRA. Submitting a rental background report is standard in the rental industry. Landlords rely on rental screening tools when determining whether or not to lease to someone. In this article, we will explain Equifax's rental screening offerings. Equifax rental property tenant screening services play a significant role in this process. We will explore Equifax's background screening solutions and their effect on landlords and tenants.  

What does an Equifax Rental Screening Solutions Report show?

Equifax Rental Screening Solutions is a tool for landlords to assess the background of potential tenants, enabling them to make informed and responsible decisions in the tenant selection process. The Equifax rental history report is often called the "Equifax resident screening services" report and examines various vital components, shedding light on critical aspects of an applicant's history. Here's a detailed exploration of what landlords can expect to find in an Equifax Rental Screening Solutions Report:

  • Credit report
  • Multi-state or statewide criminal search
  • Eviction Search
  • Employment verification
  • Rental History
  • National sex offender search

Resident Score

As stated previously, Equifax is a consumer reporting agency (CRA). A consumer reporting agency collects your information from data furnishers like credit card companies and banks. After collecting your information, Equifax and other CRAs provide that information to lenders and requesters if they inquire about your credit background. In addition to credit scores, Equifax provides Equifax background check services, including Equifax rental checks, one of Equifax's offerings for investors, landlords, banks, etc.

One of Equifax's scores is a three-digit number ranging from 300 to 800, with 300 considered a poor credit rating and 800 considered an excellent score. Equifax uses credit scores and the information it pulls during the "resident screening services" and reports that information to your prospective landlord. The landlord then uses that information to decide whether to accept or reject your application. Landlords have specific criteria they are looking for based on all the factors mentioned above. 

Credit Report

Equifax includes a detailed credit report in its screening solutions, offering landlords insights into an applicant's financial responsibility. As stated above, a credit score is a three-digit number Equifax provides landlords to determine if they want to rent to you. Many factors can contribute to poor or excellent scores. This section covers various aspects:

  • Credit Accounts. Your credit report lists active and closed credit accounts, like credit cards, loans, and other financial obligations.
  • Payment History. Landlords can review an applicant's timely payment history and identify late or missed payments.
  • Outstanding Debts. The Equifax credit report provides information on an applicant's current exceptional debts, giving landlords an overview of their financial commitments.
  • Both past due and current accounts affect your credit score. Landlords will review your entire credit report history when determining your creditworthiness.

Eviction History

An eviction is the legal action that landlords take to remove tenants from the premises when they've failed to pay rent. This section of the report reviews any evictions from your past, which is a significant factor for property managers when assessing your reliability. Understanding an applicant's eviction history helps landlords make informed decisions about any risks associated with renting to that individual. 

Income Information

Equifax will report an applicant's income to evaluate their suitability for rental obligations. Here are some of the things landlords will consider:

  1. Income Verification. Equifax verifies your reported income, ensuring it aligns with the information you provided during your application.
  2. Affordability Assessment. Equifax refers to this report section as the "ability to afford." Landlords can assess whether the applicant's income comfortably covers the rental amount, ensuring sustainable financial commitment.
  3. Debt-to-Income Ratio. Equifax may provide the applicant's debt-to-income ratio, offering landlords an additional metric to evaluate financial health.
  4. Reviewing financial information. Reviewing your financial information in its entirety helps landlords assess financial viability during tenant selection. It also helps to ensure a balanced renting process for both parties.

Equifax Criminal Rental Screening

Equifax's screening extends to criminal background checks. This portion of the screening covers different aspects of your criminal history, which provides landlords with information about how you will affect the safety and security of their property. Equifax offers different criminal background check packages, and it's up to your landlord to determine which one they want to use. Equifax can run a full criminal background check for landlords and employers. During the criminal background check, Equifax usually pulls: 

  • Sex offender data
  • County jail records
  • State prison records
  • Any other requested data
  • Convictions
  •  Pending charges

Equifax's criminal reports detail any criminal convictions you may have pending. Being privy to potential criminal records helps landlords understand if you have any lingering legal problems. If landlords are aware that you are convicted of crimes-especially violent crimes or those of a sexual nature, landlords can protect their business, as well as the other tenants who reside on their property. Therefore, every applicant has to agree to a criminal background check if they want to rent property. Of course, you can decline the background checks, but if it is a prerequisite for your tenancy, you may be disqualified from leasing at that particular community.

Sex Offender Data

In the Equifax rental screening process, evaluating an applicant's information against the National Sex Offender Public Registry is crucial for ensuring a safe living environment. This screening aims to identify convicted sex offenders in any state, allowing property managers to make informed decisions about potential tenants. Equifax employs advanced technology to cross-reference applicant details with the registry's database. If errors in sex offender data occur, applicants should obtain their rental screening report, dispute inaccuracies with Equifax, and seek legal assistance if disputes remain unresolved, as inaccuracies may violate consumer rights under the Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA).

Equifax's criminal rental screening provides landlords with a detailed overview of an applicant's criminal history, including convictions and pending charges. Additionally, incorporating sex offender data adds a crucial layer to the safety assessment, allowing landlords to make informed decisions prioritizing the security of their property and community. These screening components contribute to the overall goal of creating a secure living environment for all residents, reinforcing the value of Equifax Rental Screening Solutions in the rental application process.

Social Trace

The Social Trace feature, or as Equifax refers to it, the "SSN Verification Services," confirms an applicant's information with identity assessment and authentication. Equifax's SSN Verification matches an applicant's details, such as name, social security number, and date of birth, with information from the Social Security Administration. This helps landlords determine if your identity is authentic based on your application details without compromising your privacy. 

Other Criminal Records

In addition to sex offender data, Equifax's screening solutions may include information on other criminal records. This approach enhances the overall understanding of an applicant's legal history, allowing landlords to make decisions aligned with safety and security concerns.

Mistakes on My Equifax Rental Screening

While Equifax strives to provide accurate information, mistakes can happen in rental screening reports. These inaccuracies can pose significant challenges for tenants during the rental application process, including unwanted delays.

Can I Sue Equifax if My Screening Report Includes Errors?

Yes, tenants have the right to take legal action if their Equifax Rental Screening report contains errors that adversely affect their rental prospects. A Consumer Attorney, sometimes called a "landlord, tenant screening report errors lawyer," specializes in addressing these issues and can guide you through rectifying inaccuracies.

Lawsuits Against Equifax

Many people like you have filed lawsuits against Equifax for FCRA compliance issues and errors in rental screening checks. These lawsuits emphasize the consequences of erroneous information on a person's life, setting legal precedents and holding Equifax accountable for the reported errors. 

Navigating challenges with Equifax Rental Screening reports can be complex, and seeking professional legal support is often the best action. You should note that we've assisted clients with similar issues with TransUnion Rental Screening Services, or TURSS, a segment of TransUnion that focuses solely on rental screenings. We've fought against TURSS errors in court and won! Similarly, we can do the same with defending you against Equifax errors. 

How Much Does it Cost?

Many individuals hesitate to seek legal support due to concerns about costs. However, if you seek an attorney for false credit reporting, Consumer Attorneys charges you zero out-of-pocket fees. You have no reason to stall. Contact us today and request your free case evaluation!

Ask for Our Help Now

If you encounter challenges with your Equifax Rental Screening report, you are not alone in dealing with the complexities. Consumer Attorneys can provide expert guidance, helping you dispute inaccuracies, navigate legal hurdles, and secure the rental you deserve. We are a nationwide law firm, so no matter where you live, we can help you!

Seeking legal support is crucial for addressing inaccuracies and ensuring a fair and accurate rental application process. If you face challenges, don't hesitate to ask for our professional help. You can contact us at [email protected], fill out the online intake form, or chat with us live via our virtual chat feature on our website. 

Caution Regarding Credit Repair Companies

If you have yet to encounter them, you might come across firms presenting themselves as convenient credit repair agencies, often requiring an upfront payment from you with no guaranteed resolution to the inaccuracies in your Equifax rental screening. These companies heavily advertise online, capitalizing on the prevalence of rental screening errors as a lucrative market, which does not always promote fairness or ethical practices. However, what they may not disclose is that opting for a consumer protection attorney instead offers significant advantages:

  1. No Financial Burden on You. Unlike credit repair companies, choosing consumer protection attorneys entails no upfront or out-of-pocket costs.
  2. Access to Comprehensive Legal Expertise. You benefit from working with a professional with extensive legal training, knowledge, and experience.
  3. Adherence to Legal and Ethical Standards. A skilled attorney operates under strict legal and ethical standards of excellence, protecting your interests.
  4. Ability to Pursue Equifax for Resolution and Compensation. Opting for legal assistance empowers you to take legal action against Equifax for both resolution and compensation, a recourse not typically offered by credit repair companies.
  5. Unlike opportunistic entities, consumer protection attorneys are empowered by laws and regulations. Consumer attorneys adhere to the rules and regulations of the Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA). 

Frequently Asked Questions

  • How to Check Rental History on Equifax?

    To review your rental history on Equifax, access your Equifax free rental report at AnnualCreditReport.com. Regular checks enable you to identify discrepancies that affect your future rental opportunities. Keep your rental history updated and error-free by staying vigilant through routine reviews. Familiarizing yourself with your Equifax rental history empowers you to address any inaccuracies promptly, promoting a favorable rental profile. You should regularly monitor your Equifax reports, as it is a proactive step that can help secure both your credit story and your housing prospects. If you have questions or notice something strange on your report, Consumer Attorneys will help answer your questions.

  • Does Equifax Show Rental History?

    Yes. Equifax incorporates rental history in its reports. If you've leased previously, landlords most likely submitted your rental payment information to Equifax during that time. If you've never rented, that should also appear on your record. Overall, your rental history is used to determine if you have any unpaid fees, evictions, or situations that would prevent you from being a tenant who pays rent on time. Your payment history is a good predictor of how you will pay rent in the future. Therefore, landlords appreciate having your rental history report as one of their tools when determining if they will rent to you.

  • How Long Does Rental Data Stay on Equifax?

    Typically, rental data sticks around on Equifax for seven years, although the duration may vary based on Equifax rental reporting practices. This seven-year span covers an overview of your rental history over an extended period. It includes data like on-time payments, lease agreements, and events worth notating. If your report has positive trends over time, it can contribute to a favorable credit profile and a reliable tenant assessment. Once property managers see that you've maintained a good payment history, they are more comfortable welcoming you into their community. Thus, your opportunity to rent is broader than if you have flags for unpaid rent or evictions on your Equifax rental report.

  • Can I Get My Rental History from Equifax?

    Yes. You have a right to request your credit history or report from Equifax, especially if they ran a rental screening on you. Access your free annual copy via AnnualCreditReport.com to conduct a thorough review and ensure accuracy. Checking your report regularly to monitor your credit and background information, like your rental history, is helpful when applying for credit and housing. Again, it is your legal right to access your credit report, and you should do so regularly to track any errors or mistakes. If you have trouble finding your rental history on your report, you do not have to go it alone. The attorneys at Consumer Attorneys are ready to assist you.

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About the author
Daniel Cohen
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Daniel Cohen is the Founder of Consumer Attorneys. Daniel manages the firm’s branding, marketing, client intake and business development efforts. Since 2017, he is a member of the National Association of Consumer Advocates and the National Consumer Law Center. Mr. Cohen is a nationally-recognized practitioner of consumer protection law. He has a wealth of proven legal experience in the US in: collective claims, representing visually impaired people who believe their rights under the Americans with Disabilities Act have been violated in both the physical and digital environments, corporate governance and dispute resolution. Read more

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