If you're reading this, you've probably tried bringing your PRBC alternative credit report to your local bank or credit union and found they don't accept our reports. This leaves you in a pretty tight spot. What should you do if a loan officer refuses to reference your PRBC report?
Legally, they have to accept it
In the event your lender refuses to even consider looking at your PRBC report, tell them that, by law, they have to. According to the National Consumer Reporting Association, if you request that a creditor take into account information that isn't from one of the big three credit bureaus (Equifax, Experian and TransUnion), they're legally obligated to do so. That's a requirement under the Equal Credit Opportunity Act.
Essentially: Know your rights. If you enter the discussion armed with this knowledge about the ECOA, the loan officer isn't going to show you to the door.
Justify use of alternative credit reports
Just because your lender is legally required to consider the information within your PRBC report, doesn't mean they will regard the report highly. Think of it this way: If you were in charge of approving loans and a customer came up to you with a type of report you'd never heard of before, would you feel confident the report provided accurate information?
If you feel the loan officer has any doubt regarding the PRBC report's validity, point them to the studies on the PRBC MainStreet website. One of them, which was conducted by the Policy & Economic Research Council, found that alternative credit data helped analysts accurately predict whether certain people would be late on mortgage payments.
Specifically, consumers who consistently failed to keep up with home loan payments had utility and telecom delinquency rates of 22 percent. Telling your loan officer about this and other studies highlighting the benefits of using alternative credit data might improve your chances of getting approved, assuming you have a good PRBC score.
Tell them how to sign up to receive reports
After reminding your loan officer about the ECOA regulation and explaining why he should use alternative data to make his decision, he'll probably explain he has no idea how to get your alternative credit report. While you may think you can print out your report and give it to him in the office, he still has to pull the report from PRBC MainStreet's website.
There are two ways your lender can receive PRBC reports. The first way is to submit an application to use PRBC Credit Builder through our online portal. PRBC MainStreet approves the application, and we send a link to your PRBC report to the loan officer via email. The second option is for the lender to access your report through our API. The lender can find more information on the PRBC MainStreet site.
In addition, tell your lender that, after they sign up to receive PRBC reports, they can access your information whenever they want. So they don't have to worry about the data being outdated. If you take the steps we outlined above, you'll get your loan office on board.