There is no such thing as a soft pull store credit card. Store credit cards only use soft pulls during the pre-approval process.
When you receive a pre-approved offer for a store credit card, it is because the issuer used a soft pull to do a preliminary check of your credit and determined that you were likely to be approved. But if you choose to apply for the card, the issuer will always perform a hard pull of your credit report. A hard pull will likely cause a small drop in your credit score, but it should bounce back quickly.
While there aren’t any soft pull store credit cards, there are a few general-purpose credit cards that do not require a credit check. One example is the First Progress Platinum Elite Secured Credit Card. Another is the OpenSky Secured Visa. They just aren’t affiliated with any particular retailer.
The easiest department store credit card to get approved for is the Fingerhut Credit Account, but that’s only if you count an online retailer / mail catalog as a department store. It’s the only store card you can get with bad credit. Pretty much all other store credit cards require fair credit (640+ score) for approval. But that still means most department store credit cards are easy to get for most people. It also means you should choose your card based on where you shop the most and which offers the most rewards, since there isn’t much of a difference in their approval requirements. Let’s take a look at a few good options.… read full answer
Here are some of the easiest department store credit cards to get:
Target REDcard: For people with fair credit or better. 5% off at Target and Target.com. Returns extended by 30 days. Free shipping. Yearly 10% off coupon. No annual fee.
Walmart Store Card: For people with fair credit or better. $35 off a $75+ purchase the same day you get approved. 3% Walmart.com discount, 2% Murphy USA and Walmart gas discount, 1% Walmart in-store discount. No annual fee.
Kohl’s Credit Card: For people with fair credit or better. 30% off your fist purchase. 15% off coupon by mail. At least 12 special offers per year. Spending $600 makes you a Kohl’s Most Valued Customer and entitles you to 18 discounts per year. No annual fee.
JCPenney Credit Card: For people with fair credit or better. 1 point per dollar on qualifying purchases. Save 5%-15% on select items. $10 rewards by email. Prepaid card by mail worth $100-$500 when you buy 2 or more appliances starting at $398. No annual fee.
Fingerhut Credit Account: For people with bad credit or better. Easiest store card to be approved for. No rewards. No annual fee.
Amazon.com Store Card: For people with fair credit or better. 5% off at Amazon.com if you have a Prime account. $10 gift card after approval. No annual fee.
There are plenty of other department store cards with great deals too. For example, Lord & Taylor, TJX, Saks Fifth Avenue and Sears all give savings and perks that are worth looking at. Just remember that department store credit cards can only be used at the store that issued them (and sometimes affiliates), so apply for a card from somewhere you know you’ll shop on a regular basis.
A soft credit check shows the same information as a hard inquiry. This includes your loans and lines of credit as well as their payment history and any collections accounts, tax liens or other public records in your name. A soft credit check does not hurt your credit because it happens when … read full answeryou review your own credit report or a creditor does so for regular account maintenance or to pre-screen you for a credit card.
A hard credit check, on the other hand, is used when you apply for a new loan or line of credit. It can also happen when you ask for a higher spending limit on an existing account. A hard credit inquiry causes temporary credit score damage because it signals that you are trying to borrow more, and creditors need to see that you can handle the burden responsibly.
So to recap, hard and soft credit checks show the same thing. They just differ in terms of why they’re done and how they impact your credit score. For a more detailed breakdown, check out WalletHub’s Hard vs. Soft Credit Inquiries guide. You can also learn more about the soft side of things in particular from our article on Soft Credit Checks.
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