How long does it take to open up a membership with Rental Research/Background Research, Inc.?

How long it takes to become a member of Rental Research/Background Research, Inc. depends on which type of membership you want to open. Private Landlords can expect their membership to be opened in just a couple of business hours. Professional Landlords and Employers can expect that their memberships will take 3-5 days to open, depending on the availability of information needed to open the account.

Can I run a report with Rental Research/Background Research without becoming a member?

No, the Fair Credit Reporting Act as well as the credit bureau requires that we vet our members before allowing us to run reports for them.

How long does it take to run a report with Rental Research?

How long it takes to obtain your completed report from Rental Research depends on several factors. The first factor is the method in which you request your report. If you enter the report into our database then most reports come back to you within a few minutes, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. The only exceptions to that is if you are requesting landlord or employment verifications or if your search query finds a potential eviction or criminal record that needs to be verified before it is sent back to you. In those cases your report will be returned to you during regular business hours. Landlord references and employment references may take several days to obtain as they require the cooperation of others. If you choose to fax or e-mail your completed applications to us then they can take 1-2 hours for a normal report and up to several days to obtain employment and landlord references.

What is an over the phone verification and why do I have to do it?

An over the phone verification is a process that we use to verify that you are who you say that you are. You will be asked to provide us with your name, address, birthdate and social security number. This information is not retained by Rental Research or Background Research. We type it into the data base of a company called Lexis Nexis. They use that information to generate a quiz. The quiz will contain questions from public records associated with you or people associated with you. You might be asked the birthdate of your spouse or the county that you live in. Unfortunately some of the questions can be difficult to remember. Basically anything found in public records associated with you in the last 30 or so years could be asked.   The questions are randomly generated and Rental Research has no control over what questions they ask us. The combinations of questions within the Authentication quiz are designed so that only the correct individual should be able to answer them properly.

Rental Research/Background Research is required by the Credit Bureau to complete an over the phone verification on all of our clients who wish to have a credit report run on their applicants.

Why do I need to provide you with a phone bill?

The credit Bureau requires that we verify your identity in multiple ways. We have chosen the phone bill as one of the ways that you prove you are who you say you are. We only need the page of the phone bill which contains your name, address and the phone number that you provided on the membership application. Feel free to block out any information containing who you have called.

What if I don’t have a phone bill?

If you don’t have a phone bill then a utility bill may be substituted for the phone bill. The utility bill must have the address on it that you have given us as the address on your account. Please also send us a statement stating that you do not have a cell phone bill and the reason why.

What if I don’t see a package that contains the information that I need?

If you don’t see a package that contains the information that you need, please contact Rental Research at 253-838-9545 and we will help put together a report that contains the information that you need. We are always happy to create a custom product for you.

Why do credit bureaus require business verifications/physical inspections?

Credit reporting agencies (CRA) and resellers are required by federal law and regulations to establish and maintain reasonable procedures to protect consumer data (Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA) and the Gramm-Leach-Bliley Act). A physical inspection of prospective users of consumer information is a mandatory component of the CRA’s compliance requirements.

If I decide to become a Professional Landlord Member, where does the physical inspection take place?

All inspections must be conducted at the physical location where credit reports are received, managed and stored. The Inspector will not open filing cabinets or look at any area other than the designated office space.

Who will conduct my physical inspection?

An independent 3rd party is required perform the physical inspection. TrendSource was selected to perform the inspections. TrendSource is one of few companies authorized by all credit bureaus to perform physical inspections.

How much does it cost to have a Physical Inspection?

If you go to the TrendSource website and order your inspection online, it will cost $65. You may elect to fax it (253-838-9445) or email ( it to Rental Research and it will only cost you $65. . If you print off the order form and fax it to TrendSource it will cost $80.

What is TrendSource looking for when they come out and do a physical inspection of my Office?

TrendSource will be looking to see that unauthorized people do not have access to your applicant’s personal information. This means that there is not unsupervised access to the office. It also means that you have a locking file cabinet and a shredder. If your office is in your home you will be required to have a physical separation between your personal space and your office space. This usually means a door with a lock on it. To qualify a home office would be used exclusively as a home office. (For instance it would not be also used as a guest room or a home gym.) There would be no personal belongings in it.

How long does it take to be inspected?

Most inspections are typically completed within 3-5 business days. The vast majority of our inspections are assigned within 24 hours, following assignment our field agent is required to make initial contact within 6-24 hours to set-up the physical inspection appointment. The actual physical inspection should take 10-15 minutes. Following the inspection the field agent will post the inspection data, which is then audited for quality and accuracy conformance. Final inspection reports are posted within 48 hours following the inspection.

Where can I find additional information about on-site inspections?

For more information about onsite inspections, please click on the following link: TrendSource On Site Inspection Info