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Soft credit check definition

What is a soft credit check? A soft credit check is a type of credit inquiry that doesn’t impact your credit score. It’s often used by lenders to pre-qualify you for a loan or credit card.

What is a soft credit check?

A soft credit check is a type of credit check that is typically done when a person is seeking new credit, such as a loan or credit card. Unlike a hard credit check, which can negatively impact your credit score, a soft credit check will not.

How does a soft credit check differ from a hard credit check?

A soft credit check, also known as a soft inquiry, is a type of credit check that does not impact your credit score. Soft inquiries occur when you or your authorized representatives check your own credit report or when businesses check your report for non-credit related reasons — such as employment background checks, insurance underwriting, or renting an apartment. Unlike a hard inquiry, a soft inquiry will not be visible to anyone other than you and will not have any impact on your credit score.
A hard credit check, also known as a hard inquiry, is a type of credit check that can have a negative impact on your credit score. Hard inquiries occur when you apply for new lines of credit — such as a mortgage, auto loan, or credit card — or when businesses check your report for adverse reasons — such as fraud prevention or debt collection. Unlike soft inquiries, hard inquiries will be visible to anyone who pulls your report and can negatively affect your score.

What are the benefits of a soft credit check?

A soft credit check, also known as a soft inquiry or soft pull, is a type of credit check that does not impact your credit score. Soft inquiries can be initiated by lenders, landlords, employers, and you when you check your own credit. These checks are common and are designed to help give the inquiring party more information about you without impacting your borrowing ability.
There are many benefits to opting for a soft credit check over a hard credit check. For starters, soft checks will not ding your credit score like hard inquiries can. Additionally, soft checks do not stay on your report for as long as hard inquiries (just two years versus seven), so they have less of an impact over time. Finally, because soft inquiries do not require your permission, they are often done without your knowledge – meaning you don’t have to worry about giving anyone access to your report.

For more, check out these associated articles on hard credit check page, and on tenant screening report.

How can I get a soft credit check?

Most people are aware of the existence of hard credit checks. A hard credit check, also known as a “hard pull,” occurs when a lender or creditor reviews your credit report to make a lending decision. This type of inquiry appears on your credit report and can potentially lower your credit score.
In contrast, a soft credit check, sometimes called a “soft pull,” does not appear on your credit report and will not impact your credit score. Soft inquiries may be generated when you check your own credit report, when a prospective employer checks your report as part of a background check, or when you are preapproved for certain types of loans or lines of credit.

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