I recently saw an ad to use a new product from Experian to help improve your credit score. It’s called Experian Boost. In a quick ten minute process, I was able to add my payment history for some of my utilities to my Experian FICO 8 credit score. They normally only report histories on mortgages, credit cards, installment loans, and open accounts. Most of us pay our utility bills on time. It’s tough living without lights, heat and Internet connections.
Experian scans your existing bank and credit card accounts, with your permission, looking for your payment history on utilities and then adds them to your report. In my case, they located my Time Warner cable bill and my AT&T phone bill and added the last 23 months payments on to my credit file for each account.
I have what’s called a “thick credit file” with 27 open credit card accounts, so the addition was not significant in my case. But imagine if you only have one or two entries in your credit file? It could significantly thicken your file and provide a boost in your score.
I also have a 2% utilization factor and 6.7-year average life per account. My oldest account is 16 years old. They could not find my electric bill I guess as it is a regional company, but again every credit file is different. You could benefit from this FREE service.
If you are building a new credit file or find yourself just under the suggested 700-720+ score range for premium travel cards, take the ten minutes to add your utilities to your credit file.
Experian advertises that average users boost their FICO Score 8 by 14 points. They also openly admit that not all lenders use the information impacted by Experian Boost.
For the time I spent, it was well worth the education. My FICO Score 8 stayed the same at 780, but I’m confident this will help some of you just on the edge of the premium travel credit card approval range. And as a credit reporting agency, I think you’ll be impressed with the disclosures they make and information they provide before you decide if you need a Boost.
As for my file, from now on, my timely AT&T and Time Warner payments will be reflected in my score, and that can’t hurt, but can help keep that score in the Very Good range.
Login to Experian and look for Experian Boost in the bottom list of categories
Source: frugal travel guy