Skip to main content

CFPB Warns Landlords And Consumer Reporting Agencies To Report Accurate Rental Information

Katie Jensen
Jul 01, 2021

Inaccurate rental or eviction information can unfairly block families and individuals from safe, affordable housing.

KEY TAKEAWAYS
  • The end of the CDC eviction moratorium could increase negative rental information in the consumer reporting system.
  • More information accuracy will increase rental application acceptances and promote fair, equitable recovery.
  • Black, Hispanic, and Asian American renters are especially vulnerable, considering they are twice as likely as white renters to be behind on their rent.
  • Minorities are also at an increased risk for having someone else’s negative information erroneously included with theirs.

As the federal moratorium on evictions comes to an end, the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) reminds landlords and consumer reporting agencies of their critical obligation to accurately report on rental and eviction information. Inaccurate rental or eviction information on a tenant screening report or credit report can unfairly block families and individuals from safe, affordable housing.  

As the country starts to recover and pandemic financial assistance programs come to an end, the CFPB is focused on protecting families from being denied housing based on inaccurate information. The CFPB enforcement compliance bulletin is part of an ongoing commitment to an equitable and fair recovery. 

“For families already struggling to make ends meet, an inaccurate report can be the difference between homelessness or settling into a safe and affordable home,” said CFPB Acting Director Dave Uejio. “Landlords and consumer reporting agencies have clear obligations under federal law, regarding the accuracy of the information reported about tenants, and to conduct timely investigations when consumers dispute information. They need to get this right. The CFPB will closely monitor their compliance, and we will use all the tools at our disposal including enforcement, to protect consumers during this critical time.”

As the nation begins moving people off financial assistance and onto their own two feet, accuracy in consumer credit reports will be essential to the process. More accuracy will increase rental application acceptances and promote fair, equitable recovery. 

The CFPB is currently concerned that the end of the CDC eviction moratorium could mean an increase in negative rental information in the consumer reporting system, and an increase in consumers seeking rental housing. The combination of the effects could exacerbate existing problems with accurate tenant-screening. Any inaccuracies would especially hurt renters seeking new housing, including those already behind on rent. 

Black, Hispanic, and Asian American renters are especially vulnerable, considering they are twice as likely as white renters to be behind on their rent, according to a CFPB analysis of U.S. Census Bureau housing data. Minorities are also at an increased risk for having someone else’s negative information erroneously included with theirs, because their community lacks diversity in surnames compared to white communities. 

The CFPB intends to look at landlords, property managers, and debt collectors to see if they are furnishing accurate information to CRA’s. Specifically, the CFPB plans to look at amounts already paid on behalf of a tenant through a government grant or relief program, and fees or penalties prohibited by CARES Act section 4024(b).

The CFPB will also be looking to see if companies are including only accurate rental information in individuals’ consumer reports, reporting rental information for the correct subject, preventing the inclusion of eviction records that have been expunged or sealed, and properly investigating when consumers report inaccuracies.  

In the event that furnishers or CRA’s do not meet their obligations, the CFPB will have to take action to address violations, including the remediation of harm done to the consumer. 

This compliance bulletin can be found in the compliance resources section of the CFPB website. 

Published
Jul 01, 2021
CFPB Reports Trends In Financial Assistance

The latest developments from this study reveal that most consumers have exited the payment assistance they received at the start of the pandemic.

Analysis and Data
Jul 14, 2021
CFPB Orders GreenSky To Refund $9M In Unauthorized Loans

The consent order requires GreenSky to refund or cancel up to $9 million in loans for the customers harmed by this illegal conduct.

Regulation and Compliance
Jul 13, 2021
FHFA Mandates Quarterly Fair Lending Reports

FHFA issued orders for all enterprises to submit quarterly Fair Lending Reports with data and information to improve the FHFA’s capabilities. 

Regulation and Compliance
Jul 01, 2021
FHFA Follows CFPB To Protect Borrowers Once COVID-19 Foreclosure And Eviction Moratoriums End

The Federal Housing Finance Agency made it clear that Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac servicers are not permitted to make first notice or filing for foreclosure that would be prohibited by the CFPB protections for borrowers affected by COVID-19.

Regulation and Compliance
Jun 30, 2021
CFPB Finds Evidence Of Redlining And Deceptive Acts In 2020

Enforcement actions resulted in more than $124 million in consumer remediation and civil money penalties in 2020

Regulation and Compliance
Jun 29, 2021
CFPB Announces New Rule To Ease Transition Out Of Forbearance

The CFPB established temporary special safeguards to ensure that borrowers have time before foreclosure to explore other options of repayment, including loan modifications and selling their home.

Regulation and Compliance
Jun 28, 2021