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 you 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.
No. Checking your credit score does not lower it. When you check your own credit score or credit report, there is a soft inquiry, which has no effect on your credit score. On the other hand, when a lender checks your credit for the purpose of evaluating an application for a credit card or loan, it can lower your credit score due to a so-called … read full answerhard inquiry.
Your credit score is meant to reflect your responsibility with credit, so it will only change based on your payment history, credit utilization, credit applications (resulting in hard inquiries), derogatory marks, and years of experience with credit. Unlike these factors that influence credit scores, checking your own credit score is purely informational, so your score will not be affected.
Since checking your credit score doesn’t lower it, you should check often, as doing so will help with your financial planning. If your score is low, for example, you can take steps to improve it before it costs you money. If it’s in good shape, you could potentially qualify for better credit cards and other benefits, thus saving money. And if your score changes unexpectedly, it could be a sign of fraudulent activity. In that case, you should also check your credit report and file a dispute for any items that are fraudulent or inaccurate.
You can check your latest credit score and credit report for free through your WalletHub account.
A hard credit inquiry will cause your credit score to drop by around 5-10 points on average. If you have a strong credit history, your credit score could take less of a hit. Hard credit inquiries only remain on your credit report for two years, and no longer impact credit scores after one year. Maintaining positive credit habits and paying off bills on time will rebuild your score, and the impact of hard inquiries will vanish over time.… read full answer
Hard credit inquiries occur when you apply for a new loan or line of credit, like a new credit card or mortgage. While one inquiry may lower your score, multiple hard inquiries on a credit report in a short period of time can cause more damage. So if you’re trying to build credit, you don’t want to apply for a new credit card and then shortly after take out a personal loan if a mortgage is also in your near future, for example. Research from FICO shows that people with six inquiries or more on their credit reports are eight times as likely to file for bankruptcy as those with none.
If you’re shopping around for a mortgage or auto loan, you’ll want to find the best rate, and lenders will make multiple hard checks within a short period of time. Both FICO and VantageScore credit scores account for this and include a grace period while shopping around. Depending on which scoring model is used, the grace period is 14, 30, or 45 days. VantageScore has a 14-day window and any inquiries during that time are counted as one, regardless of what type. Newer FICO models ignore auto loan, student loan, and mortgage inquiries made 30 days before your score updates. Some FICO scores also look for older hard inquiries and group those made in a 45-day period into just one inquiry.
Hard inquiries don’t make up a large part of your credit score. VantageScore counts them as one of the least influential pieces your total score, while FICO counts them as part of the “new credit” category that only represents 10% of your score. Not all credit inquiries impact your credit score, either. Soft inquiries occur any time you check your own score, employers run a background check, creditors review the terms of your existing account, or creditors pre-screen or pre-approve you for a new offer. Soft credit pulls have no effect on your credit score.
Pretty much the same as a hard credit check. The only difference is it won't hurt your score.
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