Life can be challenging when your credit score is low. Loans are more difficult to qualify for, interest and insurance rates are higher, and some jobs become harder to come by. It’s not something you want to live with. Fortunately, you don’t have to—not if you start paying rent online! One study found that renters who included their rent payments to credit bureaus saw their credit score increase by an average of 16 points within six months—the lower the score, the better the benefit!

Paying rent online is a simple way to fix your credit and better your life. Let’s discuss the elements of a credit score and how paying rent online helps your payment and credit history.

The Elements of a Credit Score

You may be surprised to find that you have not one but many credit scores. Scores vary depending on who you ask, but credit bureaus generally use the same criteria. For example, FICO breaks their credit scores down like so:

  • Payment history (35%)
  • Amounts owed (30%)
  • Length of credit history (15%)
  • New credit (10%)
  • Credit mix (10%)

As you can see, FICO gives the most weight to payment history—and paying rent online is the perfect way to boost it.

How Paying Rent Online Helps Your Payment History

It’s not enough to just pay your rent. The credit bureaus need to know it happened in order for it to affect your credit score. “But reporting your rent payments can help you build credit—especially if you are new to credit or do not have a lot of experience using it,” says Bev O’Shea at NerdWallet.

Paying rent online is a simple, hassle-free way to make sure credit bureaus know about your payment. When you use Washington Place’s online rental payment system, your payments are reported directly to the credit bureaus. They can see that you paid in full and—crucially—on time, boosting your score. In order to opt in for the credit reporting, follow these steps:

  1. Log in to your account through the resident portal and click on “Make a Payment Now.”
  2. Select “Build your credit history by opting in to credit reporting.”
  3. Enter your information in the credit reporting fields. Be sure to select “yes” for month-to-month lease if you have one, or select “no” and a lease end date.

How Paying Rent Online Helps Your Credit History

You can boost your score even further by using a credit card when paying rent online. “Open a credit card and use it to pay your rent . . . then pay your credit card balance in full each month,” says LaToya Irby, credit expert for The Balance. “The timely credit card payments will help boost your credit score.”

Don’t let a low credit score sit and hope it will fix itself. Get out there and improve it yourself. Now that you know the elements of a credit score and how paying rent online helps your payment and credit history, you’re ready to start paying rent online. Use our resident portal and start today!