Equifax, Buildfax partner to provide property history data
Consumer information provider Equifax (EFX) will partner with BuildFax to provide property and casualty insurance carriers access to history information on more than 70 million commercial and residential properties. Whenever a major refurbishment is needed on a property, and a building permit is granted, that information is recorded. The two companies said the insurance carriers could use the data they compile to improve underwriting valuation models, while reducing the potential for fraud. BuildFax maintains a property history database on roughly 60% of the nation's building permit volume. Analysts find risk factors such as aging roofs, property improvements and valuations. "While the economic downturn and increased regulatory requirements have pressured the property and casualty market, the industry is now showing signs of stabilization and even momentum," said David Flam, senior vice president of Equifax information solutions. "Innovative resources like BuildFax's property history intelligence, on tens of millions of properties across the country, are contributing to improved performance." BuildFax President Holly Tachovsky said the firm focuses on documenting a property's "life story." "Equifax is known for bringing powerful intelligence to this vertical, and we are confident that our offering will strengthen its service and provide a level of transparency to building permit data not yet seen in the industry," Tachovsky said. Write to Jon Prior. Follow him on Twitter @JonAPrior.