Rumor has it that checking your own credit could hurt your score. This is totally FALSE! Pulling your own report via a trustworthy site like ScoreShuttle is considered a soft credit inquiry and will not affect your score. However, a hard credit check, actually could. Not sure which is which? Here’s how to easily spot the difference between a soft and hard credit check.
Soft Credit Checks
A soft credit check typically occurs when a consumer, such as yourself, checks your own credit – or, when your credit is pulled as part of a background check. Depending on the bureau, a soft credit inquiry may show up on your report, but should not affect your actual score. Here are some common examples of a soft credit check:
- Checking your own report and scores
- Employment related background checks
- Pre-qualifying quotes or offers
Hard Credit Checks
Unlike soft inquiries, hard credit checks could have a negative impact on your score. Especially if you have several pulls over a short period of time. A hard credit check typically comes from a lender when you are actively applying for a new line of credit. Here are some examples of hard inquiries:
- Applying for a loan
- Applying for a mortgage
- Applying for a new credit card
Depending on the provider, credit checks for insurance, utilities, and cell phone service could go either way. If you’re not sure which type of inquiry a company may perform, just ask. In order for a hard credit check to be conducted – you, the consumer, would need to give your permission. So for best credit results, try to limit the number of hard inquiries you agree to.