HM Treasury launches £2m fintech competition to solve housing crisis

By Daniel Lanyon on Wednesday 6 December 2017

Alternative Lending

Generation Rent is the target for the challenge, to get help younger people onto the housing ladder.

Generation Rent is the target for the challenge to get help younger people onto the housing ladder.

HM Treasury is offering £2m to budding fintech entrepreneurs who can develop an application to help Britain’s 11 million renters to record and share their rent payment data.

This, the Government hopes, will help to improve their credit scores and their chances of getting a mortgage.

The Challenge, announced in the Autumn Budget, will be launched by the Economic Secretary to the Treasury, Stephen Barclay today

Winning bids to the Rent Recognition Challenge will be selected by a panel of leading figures from the Fintech sector. The competition will provide an initial round of grant funding to six promising proposals to help to turn the ideas into a workable product.

The expert judges will then whittle the six down to just a handful of teams who will receive further funding and support to bring their ideas to market.

The Economic Secretary to the Treasury, Stephen Barclay, says people’s monthly rent is often their biggest expense, so it makes sense for it to be recognised when applying for a mortgage.

"Without a good credit score, getting a mortgage can be a real struggle. Most lenders and Credit Reference Agencies are unable to take rental data into account, because they don’t have access to it. The Rent Recognition Challenge will challenge firms to develop an innovative solution to this problem and help to restore the dream of home ownership for a new generation,” he said.

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