Did you know that you can get credit for the rent you pay if your landlord uses a certain online rent payment service? Better yet, the use of the service to pay your landlord and to report your rent to a credit bureau will be free to you as a tenant (your landlord pays a small service fee for automatic rent collection)! If your landlord does not already use ClearNow (www.ClearNow.com) have them sign up for the service and use it to debit your rent each month automatically.
Credit Scores Are Important
As you are probably aware, a good credit score nowadays has countless benefits. Whether it is a credit card or an auto loan, a higher credit score means lower interest rate on a loan. Additionally, nowadays everyone from landlords to employers may run a credit check on you when you applying for a new apartment or a new job.
Rent Payments Can Build Credit History
Since 2011, Experian, one of the “Big 3 Credit Bureaus”, has allowed tenants to build credit by reporting rent payments. ClearNow was the first service to partner with Experian to offer this service to renters who use a small landlord. To this day, ClearNow (unlike other services!) does not charge the tenant for this benefit.
Ask Your Landlord To Use ClearNow
It is a no brainer for you as a tenant to have your rent reported to a credit bureau for free! Will your landlord be willing to sign up for ClearNow so that this can happen? If you ask, most landlords are willing to pay the small service fee ClearNow charges when they realize that rent will be automatically debited from your bank account and sent to their bank account, reducing the work for both of you. So text them a link to www.ClearNow.com and ask if they can debit you for rent automatically!
There is a lot of discussion about how online rent payment benefits landlords. In fact, online rent payments are a win win for both landlords and tenants. We all lead busy lives, including tenants. Anything that helps simplify and save time are welcomed. Similar to landlords, tenants benefit from online rent payment.
Never Forget to Pay Rent
The convenience of online rent payment is difficult to dispute. As long as tenants have funds in their bank account, rent will always be paid, and it will be paid on time. Most online rent payment services, like ClearNow, are automatic. This means once a tenant is enrolled, their payment is made on their designated debit day every month. Tenants do not need to schedule anything online. They just need to have sufficient funds in their bank accounts. Life is easy and simple when chores, like paying rent, are on autopilot.
Build Credit History
In the early 2000s, the largest US credit bureaus started adding rent payment information to an individual’s credit history. Initially, they offered credit reporting only to tenants who rented from the largest apartment companies. So there was still a large number of tenants missing out on this opportunity to build credit history because they were renting from smaller landlords. In 2012, Experian made a revolutionary step by allowing tenants using ClearNow’s online rent payment service to report their rent payments. For many tenants, rent is their largest expense. So when paying rent on time, tenants benefit from online rent payment. ClearNow along with other services enable tenants to build a credit history with online rent payment.
In the early 2000s, the big 3 US credit bureaus started adding rent payment information to an individual’s credit history. Initially, they offered this only to tenants who rented from the largest apartment companies. So there were still a large number of tenants missing out on this opportunity to build credit history because they were renting from smaller landlords.
There are a number of services that help tenants build credit history with online rent payment information. Unfortunately, some of them can be a little expensive. RentReporters charges a $94.95 sign-up fee and then $9.95/mo. Rental Kharma similarly charges a $50 setup fee and then $8.95/mo per tenant.
When Did Rent Payment Get Added to Credit History?
In the 2000s, in the United States, the big 3 credit bureaus started to look at adding rent payment information to an individual’s credit history. Initially, they offered this only to some people who rented from the largest apartment companies.
Tenants who wish to build a credit history with their ClearNow rent payment data may opt in to our free credit reporting feature after they are enrolled in our online rent payment service.
ClearNow rent payment data will be furnished to Experian once your tenant has four (4) payment periods of data. Subsequent data is furnished on a monthly basis. We can only furnish rent payment data made while a tenant is enrolled in ClearNow.
Why Building Your Credit History is Important
Credit plays an important role in your life — affecting the purchases you make and much more. A credit history is vital in today’s economy and enables you to obtain valuable credit services such as credit cards, mortgages, and auto loans. Lenders use credit reports and credit scores to gauge the likelihood that you will pay back a loan.
How Paying Rent on Time Helps Build Your Credit History
Experian incorporates on-time rental payment data into their credit reports. Rental payment information will be included as part of a standard credit report and may be incorporated into certain credit scores. The inclusion of positive rental payment data in Experian credit reports allows your tenant to build credit history through timely rental payments.
ClearNow furnishes rent payment data to Experian RentBureau. Once a tenant is enrolled in ClearNow, he/she can opt in for this service. Once we have four months of complete data, those payments are furnished to Experian. Thereafter, the tenant’s ClearNow rent payments are furnished on a monthly basis.
ClearNow can only furnish rent payment data to Experian. So please make sure that you are pulling your credit report directly from Experian. You must also opt in for credit reporting with ClearNow in order for us to furnish the data. This is a separate process from your enrollment into ClearNow as your payments are not automatically reported. Instructions on how to opt in for credit reporting are in every rent reminder email. Please note, ClearNow must have four months of complete data before we can furnish your rent payment data.
ClearNow only furnishes rent payment data to the Experian credit bureau. Once you are enrolled in ClearNow, you must take an additional step and opt in for credit reporting if you would like your payment data furnished. Once you have four months of complete data, those months will be furnished to Experian and each month thereafter, on a monthly basis. If you still do not see your rent payments, please make sure that you are checking your Experian credit report and not one with another credit bureau.