Even before the COVID-19 pandemic, Massachusetts’ renters were facing a crisis from the lack of safe and affordable housing for low and moderate-income (LMI) families. One of the most significant barriers for obtaining housing is the use of credit reports and credit scores. By some estimates, 90% of landlords use credit reports and scores.
NCLC offers this testimony in support of H.1429 and S.894 on behalf of our low-income clients. The FCHA will ensure that negative credit reporting or a low credit score alone will not bar Massachusetts families from obtaining decent rental housing. It would prevent housing providers from considering a potential tenant’s credit report or score in making a rental housing decision unless a federal or state requirement mandates otherwise. This bill is necessary for a number of reasons.