Historically the industry mentality has been to use credit to identify the people who may not have good payment histories and to use it more in the negative sense. I don’t know if that’s necessarily the way the industry should continue doing it. With rental payment history data at HHHunt’s disposal, we are more likely to rent to a person with a lower credit score who perhaps had a recent foreclosure, divorce, or stolen identity but who still pays their rent on the first of every month.
If more property managers furnish data then the industry can better utilize that data and use it to mitigate risk and improve collections. We can streamline operations immensely because right now we have to conduct manual verifications and actually fill out a piece of paper, fax it to the previous landlord or previous apartment community management, have them fill it out and fax it back. Alternatively, if more property managers contribute data, that would streamline operations immensely.
Rental payment history data also gives us a competitive advantage. We inform our prospective residents that they can improve their credit score by having good rental history with us. They really like that because the majority of our prospects and residents already have good credit. It’s very important to them to maintain that score or even to increase their credit scores.