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How Much Does an Inquiry Hurt Your FICO Score?

A hard inquiry occurs when you apply for credit and the lender pulls your credit scores as part of the application process.  Credit reports include records of all hard inquiries for up to 2 years.  Unlike soft inquiries, hard inquiries really do have an overall effect on your FICO scores.

However, most people worry way too much about the impact hard inquiries will have on their credit.  In fact, according to FICO, if an inquiry actually does affect your scores, it's typically drops them by less than five points on average. So it's really nothing you should fret over. 

In addition, you will find that your credit scores will often bounce back and even improve within a few months as the positive payment history and additional credit limit from your new credit card account appears on your credit reports.  

If you've been worried about applying for a new credit card because the hard inquiry might drop your credit scores, you're absolutely right.  It might, but it won't be much, and it certainly shouldn't keep you from adding a great new credit card to your wallet. 

on Thu, 2016-03-03 13:19