Leeds Building Society incorporates Experian ‘Boost’ data to help ‘aspiring homeowners’

Ellie Duncan
10 May 2023

UK mortgage provider Leeds Building Society has partnered with Experian and connected to its ‘Boost’ service, which uses Open Banking, to help first-time buyers improve their chances of getting on the property ladder.

Using Experian’s free service means that the past 12 months of regular debit payments, council tax and subscriptions to digital entertainment services, such as Netflix or Spotify, can now contribute to credit scores and be factored into mortgage applications to the Building Society.

Powered by Open Banking, Experian Boost links a borrower’s current account payments to their credit score, which in turn, is connected to the Society’s lending systems.

During testing, Experian and Leeds Building Society found that 7.5% of the Society’s mortgage applicants would have gained an improvement in their credit score by using Experian Boost.

Richard Fearon, chief executive officer of Leeds Building Society, said: “We’re proud to be the first mortgage lender in the UK to make it easier for aspiring homeowners by incorporating free, ‘boosted’ credit scores that include regular payments.

“This will particularly help younger borrowers, first-time buyers and anyone on lower incomes who face the toughest challenge to prove their ability to repay.

“Often through no fault of their own, these groups can struggle to build a good credit score because they need to spend most of their earnings on rent and other regular payments.”

He added that, in the UK, housing is at its least affordable point since Leeds Building Society was founded in 1875.

The option to include Experian Boost data in credit scores with Leeds Building Society currently relates to residential, single applicant mortgage applications only and will never cause a credit score to go down.

“Our partnership with Leeds Building Society further supports Experian’s mission to improve financial inclusion for consumers,” added Sigga Sigurdardottir, managing director, consumer services at Experian.

“As many people across the UK face barriers to homeownership, we’re delighted that Boost users can now use their boosted scores to help them get on the ladder, making that dream of home ownership more accessible for people across the UK.”

In March this year, Virgin Money began using Experian Boost data in the credit card decisioning process for its buy now, pay later product Slyce.