How to add rent and utilities to your credit report
There are ways to ensure your rent and utilities appear on your credit report
Rent and utilities are usually not reported for credit report purposes, so you'll have to find ways to get them on your report yourself.
Do you know that your creditors are not obligated to report to the credit bureaus? This means that your credit card issuer, loan issuer, utility company, and even your landlord can afford to not report your payment to the credit bureaus. In addition, they need to pay fees to report to the bureaus, which is a subtle deterrent in our books.
This is why the vast majority of credit reports do not indicate rent and utility payments, even if you pay on time. Sometimes, landlords or utility companies report only to one or two of the biggest credit bureaus instead of all three.
The disadvantage of this situation is that the timely payment of your rent and utilities will not appear on your credit record, so it will not boost your credit score. For a bill to improve your credit score, it has to appear on your credit report.
Thus, this post details how you can add rent and utilities to your credit report.
Various methods of adding your rent and utilities to your credit report
Your rent and utilities don’t automatically make it to your credit report. Also, you can’t directly report your payments to the bureaus yourself. This is because as an individual, you don’t qualify as a “data furnisher.” Nonetheless, here are some ways you can ensure those timely payments are reported to the bureaus.
1. Agree with your creditor
As unconventional as this might sound, it might actually help to have a conversation with your landlord or utility provider. If at all possible, talk it over and reach an agreement for them to report your payments to the credit bureaus.
This might require that you’ll pay the fee they’re supposed to pay in order to report the payments. If the fee is not too much for you, you might opt to handle it. In the long run, you’ll be glad you took steps to have these payments reported.
2. Utilize third-party services
Another option when it comes to adding your rent and utilities to your credit report is to resort to third-party services. These services typically share your positive financial habits with these companies. Some of them can be used independently of your landlord’s verification while others can be used with your landlord’s verification.
Some even report both your rental payments and your utility payments to the credit bureaus.
Some of these third-party services include:
These services can be used even without verification from your landlord. Third-party services that can be used with your landlord’s verification are:
One third-party service that reports both your rental payments and utility payments is the Experian Boost. This particular service is free and adds only positive payment history. However, the payments are added only to the Experian credit report. They won’t feature on Equifax and TransUnion reports.
Adding your rental payments and utility payments to your credit reports is favorable to your credit health. Apply any of the methods discussed above to share your financial habits with the relevant credit bureaus.
For better or worse, your credit score is a big deal if you need a loan, rental housing, or even car insurance, so improving it is a worthy pursuit.
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