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How Do I Get Inquiries Removed From My Credit Report?

August 11th, 2016 · No Comments

Right at the bottom of your credit report, you’ll probably notice a section called “credit inquiries.” And while these footnotes might look innocent, they could be hurting your credit score. Fortunately, there is a solution.

Credit Report inquiries formula on a chalkboard

What Are Credit Inquiries, and How Do They Affect My Credit Score?

When a bank, lender, or other business entity reviews your credit score (as part of the process of applying for a new line of credit), a note is placed in your credit history. This is called a credit inquiry.

Credit inquiries usually have a negative impact on your credit score, although it’s a fairly small one. This is because too many credit inquiries suggest to potential lenders that you might be “credit hungry” — and possibly in some financial trouble. Nobody wants to lend to someone if they suspect that they might not be repaid.

Soft Inquiries Vs. Hard Inquiries

There are two types of inquiries, soft and hard. Soft inquiries are inquiries from existing creditors or when you request a copy of your own credit report. Hard inquiries occur when you apply for new credit and the lender makes a request to see your credit report.

Your FICO score does not take into account any credit report requests that are soft. It also doesn’t consider involuntary inquiries made by businesses with which you haven’t applied for credit, for instance, if a potential employer wants to check your credit score as part of your application.

Hard inquiries do count against your credit score and can result in a drop in your credit score of two to five points.

Removing Inquiries From Your Credit Report

Normally, credit inquiries will remain on your report for two years, at which point they drop off without any effort on your part. But if you can’t wait that long, there are ways to have inquiries removed early.

Your credit report (which you can obtain a free copy of) will contain a record of your recent inquiries. Some of these you should recognize, but others you might not. Thanks to the Fair Credit Reporting Act, you are protected against any unauthorized inquiries appearing in your credit history. That means it’s entirely within your rights to contact those inquiring lenders and challenge whether they had authorization to pull your credit file. If they cannot (or aren’t willing to) provide express proof that you authorized the inquiry, you can demand that they remove the inquiry.

If it sound complicated, don’t worry; it’s true that managing your credit history can be a complex process, which is why most individuals turn to a credit repair specialist to handle the work. Remember, a couple of inquiries here and there are perfectly normal and won’t destroy your score. Still, if a quick boost is needed, removing those inquiries is a useful step to take.

Tags: credit and debt

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