A hard inquiry, also known as a hard pull occurs when your credit report is checked to assess your credit worthiness. Most often hard inquires occur when a lender checks your credit report to determine whether or not to proceed with your application. Too many hard inquires can negatively impact your credit score, however hard inquires are considered a low impact factor.
Do all credit checks result in a hard pull?
No, sometimes when your credit report is checked a soft inquiry/pull will occur, and these inquires do not affect your credit score. For example when you check your own credit, this does not result in a hard pull, and your credit score remains unaffected. Another example is many banks will only do a soft pull when assessing your creditworthiness for a savings account. In order for a hard pull to occur your consent is required. Always make sure to check the small print when you're filing an application or inquire with your bank directly so you know whether a hard or soft inquiry will occur.
How long do the effects last?
Hard inquires show on your credit report for around two years; however, the negative effects of a hard inquiry tend to fade after one year. In the Rocket Money app you can check what hard inquires you've had across the past two years on the hard inquires page.
Tip for avoiding too many hard inquires
If you're rate shopping for a mortgage or loan, complete all of your applications within 14 days. The Vantage 3.0 scoring model will count all inquires within 14 days for the same specific type of loan as just one inquiry.