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Hard Inquiry

What is 'Hard Inquiry'

A type of credit report check that may lower an individual's credit score. A hard inquiry occurs when an individual applies for any type of credit, such as a mortgage, credit card or auto loan. The reason a hard inquiry may lower an individual's credit score is because someone who has recently applied for new credit is seen as a potentially riskier borrower.

Explaining 'Hard Inquiry'

The application for new credit indicates either that the individual may need credit as a result of a financial setback, or that the acquisition of new debt by the borrower makes him or her a higher lending risk. However, credit scoring formulas typically take into account that an individual might be shopping around for the best rate, so when multiple inquiries are made for the same type of credit in a short period, such as multiple mortgage applications, the individual's credit score is not dinged repeatedly.

Hard Inquiry FAQ

Are hard inquiries bad for your credit?

Hard inquiries are not necessarily bad for your credit. If you have multiple hard inquiries within a short period of time, potential lenders may be concerned that you are a high-risk customer.

How many points does a hard inquiry affect credit score?

Typically, a hard inquiry will cause a temporary drop in your credit score by about 5 points.

Can you remove hard inquiries from your credit report?

Hard inquiries can be removed from your credit report if they are (result of) identity theft. Typically, a hard inquiry will naturally fall off of your report in approximately 2 years.

How many hard inquiries are bad?

If you have six hard inquiries within a short period of time, many lenders will consider you a high-risk for a loan.

How does a hard inquiry affect your credit score?

Typically, a hard inquiry will decrease your credit score by about 5 points. If you have a history of good credit, the impact may be less.

Further Reading


Graduate employability,'soft skills' versus 'hard'business knowledge: A European study
www.tandfonline.com [PDF]
… composed of private citizens with experience 'in areas such as housing, economics, finance, market regulation … The Financial Crisis Inquiry Report mortgage and financial products it would be poring over … But really it's very hard—do you understand it?—for the American people …

Economics as a hard science: Realistic goal or wishful thinking?Economics as a hard science: Realistic goal or wishful thinking?
search.proquest.com [PDF]
… composed of private citizens with experience 'in areas such as housing, economics, finance, market regulation … The Financial Crisis Inquiry Report mortgage and financial products it would be poring over … But really it's very hard—do you understand it?—for the American people …

An exploratory inquiry into the psychological biases in financial investment behaviorAn exploratory inquiry into the psychological biases in financial investment behavior
www.tandfonline.com [PDF]
… composed of private citizens with experience 'in areas such as housing, economics, finance, market regulation … The Financial Crisis Inquiry Report mortgage and financial products it would be poring over … But really it's very hard—do you understand it?—for the American people …

What is happening to the impact of financial deepening on economic growth?What is happening to the impact of financial deepening on economic growth?
onlinelibrary.wiley.com [PDF]
… composed of private citizens with experience 'in areas such as housing, economics, finance, market regulation … The Financial Crisis Inquiry Report mortgage and financial products it would be poring over … But really it's very hard—do you understand it?—for the American people …

Why is integrating policy assessment so hard? A comparative analysis of the institutional capacities and constraintsWhy is integrating policy assessment so hard? A comparative analysis of the institutional capacities and constraints
www.tandfonline.com [PDF]
… composed of private citizens with experience 'in areas such as housing, economics, finance, market regulation … The Financial Crisis Inquiry Report mortgage and financial products it would be poring over … But really it's very hard—do you understand it?—for the American people …

The Information Revelation Efficiency of China's Inquiry System—An Empirical Study based on Inquiry Bookkeeping Information <span style=[J]' src='/thumbnails/?img=http%3A%2F%2Fen.cnki.com.cn%2FArticle_en%2FCJFDTotal-SHJR201304015.htm' />The Information Revelation Efficiency of China's Inquiry System—An Empirical Study based on Inquiry Bookkeeping Information [J]
en.cnki.com.cn [[J]' href='https:/api.miniature.io/pdf?url=en.cnki.com.cn%2FArticle_en%2FCJFDTotal-SHJR201304015.htm'>PDF]
… composed of private citizens with experience 'in areas such as housing, economics, finance, market regulation … The Financial Crisis Inquiry Report mortgage and financial products it would be poring over … But really it's very hard—do you understand it?—for the American people …



Q&A About Hard Inquiry


How does applying for multiple types of credit in short periods affect one's score?

Multiple applications are not dinged repeatedly.

What is a hard inquiry?

A hard inquiry occurs when an individual applies for any type of credit, such as a mortgage, credit card or auto loan.

Why might a hard inquiry lower someone's credit score?

Because someone who has recently applied for new credit is seen as a potentially riskier borrower.

How does applying for new credit indicate that the individual may need more debt?

The application for new debt indicates either that the individual may need more debt because of financial setback or that the acquisition of new debt makes him or her a higher lending risk.