What is Hard Inquiry And How It Affects Credit Report

Jul 13, 2022 By Susan Kelly

Before we dig deep into what hard inquiry is? There are specific terms that you should know. Like credit history, credit report, or credit score. Because these all are the things that are checked in a hard inquiry. So, let's understand what is credit history, credit report, or credit score?

Credit Score

A credit score is a three-digit number between 300 and 850 that depicts and reflects the consumer's financial behaviour and creditworthiness. If you are paying your credit card's bill without reaching its limit, educational loan, loan repaying, or mortgage at the time, there are greater chances that you are keeping your credit scores high near 850. This high score puts credibility on your credit report. Credit history is the base for credit score, like how many open accounts you have, your repayment history, and many other factors.

  • Excellent credit scores lie between 800-850
  • Very good credit score 740-799is between 740 and 799
  • A good credit score lies between 670-739
  • A poor credit score is between 300-579

Credit History

Credit history shows how a person managed his credit in the past, including the number of credit lines, payments history, and total debt load. It deeply looks at your many mortgages, bank loans, and credit card account lines. It also discusses how many inquiries have been taken for the credit report.

Credit Report

The statement has information about your current credit situation, like the status of your credit accounts, loan paying history, and credit activity. People can have more than one credit card report. Credit bureaus, also known as consumer reporting agencies or credit reporting companies, collect and store the consumer's financial data and provide it to lenders, financial companies, or credit card companies. The following information is part of your credit card report:

Personal Information

  • Name
  • Birth date
  • Former and current address
  • Phone number
  • Social security number

Credit Accounts Information

  • Historical and current credit account
  • Account balance
  • Account opening and closing date
  • Creditor's name
  • Credit limit
  • Payment history


  • hard inquiries
  • soft inquiries

So, now we can talk about;

What is Hard Inquiry?

the answer of what is Hard Inquiry? is; When a consumer applies for credit like a loan or credit card, then "hard pull" or "hard inquiry". It's a request to check your credit details to decide on your loan or credit card application. After looking at your housing expense and income-to-debt ratio, decide whether to give you credit or not. It helps the creditors to determine whether to accept or reject your application. Unlike soft inquiry, it leaves an effect on your credit report. It can cause a decrease in your credit scores.

A person can also review his credit report detail now and then or before applying for credit. This review is known as "soft inquiry" or "soft pull". This helps you to examine your credit report. You can get information about your credit score and credibility. If you apply for a hard inquiry without a soft pull, it can let a lender point out your missed bills, and they can make it base to reject your application. This will put a negative effect on credit score, report and history. So, it would be best if you keep checking your credit report detail; this will help you manage your finances better.

How Hard Inquiries Affect Credit Score?

FICO scores can be reduced to 5 to 10 points on a single hard inquiry which ultimately causes a destructive impact on overall credit score. If in your long credit history there are some hard inquiries and your credit report and score are also up to mark, it would not affect your score badly. It will have a short-term effect on your score. This means it will affect for some month. Too many hard inquiries in a very short time can disastrously affect your credit report and scores.

The hard inquiry becomes unavoidable when applying for a mortgage or auto loan. Because in this case, credit reporting companies think you might submit your credit application to many lenders or creditors to seek multiple options or compare different lenders' interest rates. So you must avoid multiple hard inquiries from appearing on your credit report just for the sake of a single loan. And if you are applying for a personal loan or multiple credit cards in a single week can be a symbol for lander that you are seeking an unaffordable loan.

How Long Does a Hard Inquiry Last In The Credit Report?

On your credit report, a hard inquiry stays for two years. But this inquiry will affect the credit score for a year almost. So the pro tip to avoid the lousy effect of hard inquiry and keep your credit score strong is to apply for the credit you truly need.


A hard inquiry is an inevitable part of your credit report, but remember, if you don't take a proper account of hard inquiries, it can harm your credit score and reduce your credit credibility. So, regularly moniter your credit score and keep an on the impact of these inquiries on your credit file.

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