A good credit score is often the gatekeeper to better financial opportunities. Unfortunately, more than 100 million Americans don't have access to credit today, either because their credit scores are too low, or because they don't have enough credit history.
These consumers may be paying their existing credit accounts on time, but improving credit scores can take a long time. And while they may be making their utility, phone, and cable TV bill payments on time each month, this responsible behavior isn't acknowledged or rewarded in their credit files.
But soon there will be a way consumers can instantly improve their credit, using payment history from their utility and phone bills. Introducing Experian Boost, an innovative new solution that can help millions of consumers get the credit they deserve.
What Is Experian Boost?
If consumers have been making utility and telecom bill payments on time, Experian Boost will allow them to factor those payments into their credit files and instantly improve their credit scores.
Through Boost, consumers can grant Experian permission to connect to their online bank accounts to identify utility and telecommunications payments. After a consumer verifies the data and confirms they want it added to their Experian credit file, an updated FICO® Score is delivered in real time. The whole process takes about five minutes, and the resulting credit score boost is immediate.
One of the most exciting things about Experian Boost is that it's a free tool designed to help those consumers who struggle most with building credit. According to Experian research, 75% of consumers with FICO® Scores below 680 saw an improvement in their credit scores with Experian Boost. And 10% of consumers who previously had a "thin file" (not enough credit history) became scoreable after taking advantage of Experian Boost.
What's more, the risk predictiveness of "boosted" credit scores—that is, its ability to allow lenders to accurately assess risk—remained the same.
When Will Experian Boost Be Available?
Experian Boost will be available in early 2019, but you can visit experian.com/boost now to register for early access. You will need to sign up for a free Experian membership (no credit card required), and you will receive a free credit report and FICO® Score immediately. Once Experian Boost is available, you'll be one of the first to access this product and experience a new way to instantly improve your credit scores.
To find out more about Experian Boost, please visit experian.com/boost.
Editorial Disclaimer: Opinions expressed here are author's alone, not those of any bank, credit card issuer or other company, and have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by any of these entities. All information, including rates and fees, are accurate as of the date of publication.
This article was originally published on December 18, 2018, and has been updated.