Equifax is providing certain telecommunications, pay TV and utilities attributes to the mortgage industry to help streamline the mortgage underwriting process and support loans within the secondary mortgage market. Delivering these attributes to mortgage lenders alongside traditional credit reports can help create additional home ownership opportunities. The use of these expanded data insights can also provide visibility to millions of credit invisible consumers, those without traditional credit files.
For many Americans, the purchase of a home is a critical first step to establishing wealth. However, credit invisible consumers can struggle to take the first step into home ownership. Often, these consumers must go through a time-consuming manual underwriting process of obtaining physical documentation from third parties to show they have credit history when applying for a mortgage loan. By delivering certain attributes, which are based on a consumer’s aggregated history with telco, pay TV and utilities, Equifax is able to provide new insights that help to automate, save time and resources, and streamline the first mortgage process for every applicant.
“At Equifax, we strive to create economically healthy individuals and communities everywhere we do business,” says Mark W. Begor, CEO of Equifax. “While traditional credit reports remain a strong indicator of credit history and past financial reliability, we believe that more data drives better decisions. Reviewing traditional credit reports alongside alternative data insights enables the mortgage industry to develop a more complete picture of a consumer’s financial profile to drive greater financial inclusion by potentially streamlining the mortgage underwriting processes for many more consumers. This new offering is another way that we are leveraging differentiated data assets to help more consumers to gain access to mainstream financial services and opportunities.”
These Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA)-compliant insights provide anonymized information to streamline the mortgage application process as consumers seek approval for a home loan. This expanded data cannot be used by lenders to deny applications for credit or other services.
“The pathway to financial wellness and equity often begins with homeownership,” states Craig Crabtree, senior vice president and general manager of Equifax Mortgage & Housing Services. “The key to greater financial inclusion lies in greater levels of visibility. By delivering these mainstream and highly structured telco, pay TV and utilities attributes in addition to its traditional mortgage credit reports, Equifax is providing the mortgage industry with the ability to access enhanced data sets that can further facilitate the mortgage lending processes for more consumers. We look forward to working with the mortgage industry so that, together, we can unlock the full potential in helping millions of Americans achieve their goal of home ownership.”
These added consumer insights, delivered alongside Equifax traditional mortgage credit report, will be provided at no additional cost to lenders. Equifax will begin making these insights available to customers in the first quarter 2023.