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Better Credit

Advantage, First American use nontraditional creditors

November 1, 2005


photo of Paula Parisot
Paula Parisot

Applicants with sketchy or no credit histories can supplement their credit reports by using nontraditional credit data.

Pensacola, Fla.-based Advantage Credit International, along with Payment Reporting Builds Credit, or PRBC, has developed a new reporting product that verifies and scores nontraditional credit activity.

The new product, dubbed SCORMOR, uses the histories of rent payments, utilities, cable TV bills, and other sources that offer a payment history for the applicant, to assess the credit risk of the applicant and then applies a "billing payment score" to the individual's report, Advantage President Ron Litt told MortgageDaily.com.

With the service, the applicant first registers its sources of credit with PRBC (www.PRBC.com). Advantage then verifies the information and compiles a supplemental report in addition to the traditional credit report.

"Some people just don't use credit cards or have bank accounts," Litt explained. "And a lot of people who are new immigrants to this country don't have a credit history. They have the money and are a good credit risk, they just don't have a way to prove it."

While Advantage, which touts the new service at www.AdvantageCredit.com, says it is "the first credit reporting company to offer this service to its more than 8,000 broker clients," it isn't the only company incorporating nontraditional creditors into credit scores.

Santa Ana, Calif.-based First American Credit Information Group also offers a supplemental credit report called the Anthem which also nontraditional billing payment patterns supplied by the applicant that are then verified by the company for authenticity.

First American executive Mark Catone said the company has improved upon the standards set by HUD and FHA by adding fraud prevention tools and verification processes to ensure accuracy.

Information about First American's nontraditional credit product can be found at www.Credco.com.

"It's great tool for people who do a lot of FHA loans, and for other kinds of emerging market loan products that have relaxed underwriting guidelines," Advantage's Litt said -- adding that PRBC is developing a repository for nontraditional billing payment data, which would mean that less information would be required from the consumer in the future to develop the supplemental report.

Paula Parisot is a MortgageDaily.com feature reporter and a blogger at CloserBlog.com who has also worked in the mortgage industry.

Email Paula at: [email protected]

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