7 Steps to Fixing a Bad Rental History Report

Denied. It’s a word that nobody wants to hear. Millions of renters and home buyers face that dreaded ‘denied’ on a daily basis across the United States. With rental homes in high demand across California, Texas, and Florida - renters can’t afford to get denied.

Denied.

The official definition is to refuse to give or grant (something requested or desired) to (someone).

It’s a word that nobody wants to hear. Millions of renters and home buyers face that dreaded ‘denied’ on a daily basis across the United States. With rental homes in high demand across California, Texas, and Florida - renters can’t afford to get denied. Landlords and Property Managers have waiting lists of applicants ready to sign on the dotted line. As a renter, a bad rental history report is worse than a poor performance review from an employer. Your poor performance review at a former employer cannot blindly follow you due to specific Federal Human Resource Laws, but a background check or a tenant credit report with bad data can and will follow you around.

Savvy Property Managers and Landlords are using web-based tools like VerticalRent® to check your rental history, credit, criminal, and eviction background. They are also using our platform to ensure the validity of the landlord references you submit on a rental application. This ensures that the Landlord is calling on legitimate references and not fictitious individuals a potential renter makes up to conveniently overlook that they skipped out on 3 months of rent at the end of the lease.

It’s your right, as a renter, to know why a Landlord or Property Manager denied your application. The Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA) calls it the ‘Adverse Action Notice’. Think of it as a “Thanks, but no thanks letter” describing why they won’t rent that beautiful 4-bedroom home to you in the perfect school district for your growing family. The Landlord is required to specify what their deciding factors were in denying your application. Could it be your credit score? How about a criminal record? Or how about an eviction? Perhaps it may be the phone call they made to your last Landlord who spilled the beans about the continuous noise disturbance complaints from others in the neighborhood.

Whatever the reason: you’ve been denied. Before you face this situation like millions of other renters across America, we’ve compiled this step-by-step guide on how to fix a bad rental history report.

Step #1 - Pull a Free Rental History Report On Yourself

Step #1 - Pull a Free Rental History Report On Yourself

Pull a free rental history report from VerticalRent® on yourself. Many landlords will closely examine your renting history and compare that up to your self-proclaimed rental history on the rental application that you submit. By running a rental history report on yourself, you can easily view what addresses your name has been associated to in the past. This report is 100% free for renters. If you notice an address that isn’t correct, you can submit a dispute request and have it scrubbed from your rental history report.

Step #2 - Purchase an Experian Credit Report

Step #2 - Purchase an Experian Credit Report

Purchase an Experian Credit Report. As a renter, you can purchase a credit report on yourself from VerticalRent® and review it closely before sharing it with a Landlord or Property Manager. Proactively reviewing your credit report, then deciding who to electronically share it with keeps you in the driver’s seat at all times.

Step #3 - Examine Your Entire Renter Profile

Step #3 - Examine Your Entire Renter Profile

Closely Examine All Consumer Reports In Your Renter Profile. Your renter profile does not consist of only an address history and credit report - it can also include a criminal and eviction report. Using the self-discovery tools on VerticalRent, you can pull your entire renter profile including credit, criminal, and eviction reports. Although the data on the reports is generally accurate, accidents do sometimes occur. A data furnisher may have mismatched another individual’s criminal record with your name. According to the Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA), any information that is unverifiable, incomplete, or incorrect needs to be corrected and/or removed from your report.

As you closely examine each of your reports, you should ask yourself whether any of the data falls into the categories of unverifiable, incomplete, or incorrect. If it does, you can quickly submit a request to the VerticalRent team to correct the error and re-issue the report to you. By law, the data furnisher is required to correct the mistake within 30 calendar days.

Step #4 - Identify Negative Aspects That Can Be Removed

Step #4 - Identify Negative Aspects That Can Be Removed

Your rental history shouldn’t haunt you forever. For instance, if you ran into unforeseen financial difficulties due to an injury where you couldn’t pay rent for 3 months -- make it whole again with the previous landlord before it bites you. Contact the previous landlord and offer to re-pay the rent, or a portion of it to satisfy your past liabilities. Doing so becomes especially important as more and more landlords are checking references with VerticalRent.

With technological advancements, Landlords are able to use VerticalRent to identify where you have lived in the past and who the landlord and/or property manager was at your previous addresses. If you try to omit address history or use a “friend” as a Landlord Reference, the machine learning technology available today can easily flag it on your rental application.

Making amends with your past Landlords and Property Managers is always the best approach.

Step #5 - Expunge Old Evictions from Your Report

Step #5 - Expunge Old Evictions from Your Report

Do you have an eviction record still haunting you that you’ve since repaid to the landlord? If so, you can possibly have your county remove that eviction record permanently. As a Consumer Reporting Agency, VerticalRent® will work with our data furnishers to then remove the eviction records from ever showing up on your rental history reports again. Always remember: The Fair Credit Reporting (FCRA) is designed to protect you - as the consumer. Not only does the FCRA govern credit reporting, but it also governs both criminal and eviction reports.

Step #6 - Check the 7 and 10 Year Rule on Your Reports

Step #6 - Check the 7 and 10 Year Rule on Your Reports

The team at VerticalRent closely adheres to both the 7 and 10 year rules. The 7-year rule, per the FCRA, mandates that any negative criminal reporting dated older than 7 years must be removed (‘scrubbed’) from your criminal report. Bankruptcies cannot be reported for more than 10 years.

If by chance you do find a record that violates the 7 or 10 year rule, you should raise a support ticket immediately. Outdated information should always be removed from your renter profile.

Step #7 - Invite Your Past Landlords to VerticalRent

Step #7 - Invite Your Past Landlords to VerticalRent

Traditional property managers and landlords rely on the ‘Big 4’ of applicant screening: rental application, credit report, criminal report, and eviction report. However, many modern landlords and property managers are leveraging cross-referencing technology to uncover rental history movement patterns to validate the accuracy of your rental application while they call on your self-reported landlord references.

By inviting past landlords to VerticalRent with a positive reference to provide, you can balance out any negatives that may appear on your credit or criminal reports. Perhaps you were convicted of a misdemeanor in the past, but have successfully completed the court ordered Anger management classes. This misdemeanor will undoubtedly show up on your criminal report, but your last few landlords might have had a very pleasant and positive experience with you. Allows this positiveness to shine through by inviting them to VerticalRent and allowing them to share their experiences with future Landlords.



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