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Your credit score is very important, particularly if you’re looking to apply for a loan or credit card. Of the many factors that influence your score, credit inquiries are the ones that are so often misunderstood. We lay out a few common myths about credit inquiries and explain the truth about them.

Myth: There is One Type of a Credit Inquiry, and It Always Effects Your Credit

Fact: There are two types of credit inquiries: soft inquiries and hard inquiries. A soft inquiry, or soft pull, happens when you check your own report for educational purposes. This is the type you do with a credit education website. No matter how many times you do a soft inquiry on your credit, it will never hurt your score, and it won’t show on your report.

A hard inquiry, or hard pull, occurs when lenders check your report in the lending process, such as when you’re applying for a mortgage or getting a credit card. Hard inquiries can hurt your score by a few points and will remain on your report for two years. They also require your authorization, so no one should be doing a hard pull on your credit without your consent.

Myth: Hard Inquiries Negatively Affect Your Credit Score by a Lot

Fact: Hard inquiries affect your credit score, but not as much as most people think. The exact amount of points isn’t known for sure, as a complex mathematical formula is used to determine the exact amount of points that are deducted. However, most hard inquiries will dock three to five points from your score. This is only temporary, and your score should recover fairly quickly.

Myth: Shopping Around for a Loan Hurts Your Score

Fact: Too many hard inquires will negatively impact your score, but if you’re shopping around for a loan and your credit is pulled multiple times in a 14-day window, the credit bureaus will only count it as one hard inquiry. This allows you to get credit pulls from multiple lenders while protecting your score from most of those negative marks.

When you’re ready to get a mortgage, you can speak with a Home Loan Expert to see how your credit score will affect your mortgage rate.

Myth: Declaring Bankruptcy Gives You a Clean Slate of Credit

Fact: Declaring bankruptcy does not clear your credit and will severely hurt your score for many years to come. A Chapter 13 bankruptcy can stay on your credit report for up to seven years, while a Chapter 7 bankruptcy can stay on for up to 10 years. Filing for bankruptcy should be a last resort, as it has many implications to your financial health.

Myth: Paying Off Past Debts Will Instantly Help Your Credit

Fact: If you’ve had late payments or debt go into collections in the past, paying them now is good, but it won’t instantly help your credit. Your credit report is the history of payments, not a glimpse of your current credit, so it’ll take into account your late payments. Your score will also still be impacted by this debt. Similarly, any future payments you miss will affect your credit score even if you pay off the debt in full.

Myth: I Pay My Bills on Time; I Do Not Need to Check My Credit Score

Fact: You should check your credit report and score regularly, regardless of whether you pay your bills on time. While a lot of your score is based on your payment history (nearly 35%), your score is still influenced by many factors, such as hard inquiries, age of credit, credit utilization and type of accounts you have open, which influences the other 65% of your score.

Similarly, you want to regularly check for any errors that may have come up. Sometimes good accounts like mortgages aren’t reported, and other times, unauthorized accounts or someone else’s information can be reported in your name. It’s important to check for these and make sure your information is correct and that there are no instances of fraud.

Myth: All Credit Reports Are the Same

Fact: There are three major credit bureaus: TransUnion, Equifax and Experian. Each bureau offers their own credit report based on their own scoring methods. Technically, the information on each of these credit reports should be the same, but it’s not always. Companies that you have loans or credit cards with may not always report to all three bureaus.

Myth: Bad News Comes Off in Seven to 10 Years

Fact: Most bad news comes off in seven to 10 years. Chapter 13 bankruptcy comes off your credit seven years after the filing date, and a Chapter 7 bankruptcy (exoneration of all your debt) stays on your credit for 10 years. There are other forms of bad news, such as late payments, that also stay on your report for up to seven years.

It’s important to note that not all bad marks are created equally. While a late payment will still show up on your report for seven years, it will not impact your score as much as a bankruptcy or foreclosure will. Even if you miss one or two payments, it’s important for you to get back on track before one or two turns into a bankruptcy.

Your credit is vital to your financial health. It determines so much for your financial life like the ability to get a loan and the interest rates you pay on them, so it’s important to understand what impacts your score. With the right knowledge, you can make good choices about your finances and take the steps necessary to maintain a solid credit score.

This Post Has 39 Comments

    1. Hi Melvin:

      While we want to give every client the best possible experience, getting a mortgage isn’t always easy and not everyone is ready or maybe they don’t qualify for a specific program. However, we strive to help get every client in the best possible financial situation we can put them in. Additionally, I’m going to forward this to our team so we can have someone reach out to you about your specific situation and make sure we’re helping you move forward.

    1. I called Q to check on the advantage of a 15 year Fixed streamlined Refinance on my VA Loan.
      The Loan Representative looked up my account and wanted to check my Credit Score.
      I asked him if it would affect my Credit score since it was just a soft informational credit pull.
      He said not much if any at all.

      1. Hi Robert:

        We would like to look into what you were told here. Part of what you’ve said is accurate. Your credit score wouldn’t be impacted very much. It would only go down a few points for a few months, assuming you did all the right things like continuing to make payments on time. However, when we check your credit for the purposes of looking into your mortgage options, it is a hard credit pull. With that in mind, I’m getting this to our Client Relations team to dig into the situation and see what happened. Thank you for choosing Quicken Loans for your mortgage and thank you for your service to our country!

      2. Hmmm. I see that this discussion ended before 2020 arrived. Does that mean that Quicken management no longer oversees client service/satisfaction? That might explain a lot.

        1. Hi Gayle:

          We’re still committed to providing a high-level of client service and care deeply about your satisfaction. Is there something we can look into for you specifically? If you have details, I can get this to our Client Relations team. Thanks for reaching out!

  1. Credco/quicken just did a hard pull on my credit rating and I have no idea why. Can someone please help me find out about this. I want to know why Credco/Quicken would pull my credit rating since I don’t want a loan and have not applied for one.
    Thank you

    1. Hi Yvonne:

      Thanks for reaching out. I’m going to get this to our Client Relations team to look into what happened. They’ll be in contact. Have a good night!

      1. Hi, I am having the same issue. There is an unauthorized pull from credco/quicken. Can you put me in touch with your team please? Thanks!

        1. Hi Andy:

          We would be happy to look into that for you. I’m going to get this to our Client Relations team to look into your experience. Thanks for reaching out!

          1. Hi Michelle:

            I’m getting this to our Client Relations team to look into this. Thank you for reaching out!

    1. Hi Tara:

      I understand your concern and you can never be too careful. Be assured that we take only the information we need. Further, that information is treated with the strictest confidentiality. We have measures in place to keep your information secure and make sure that only the people that need to see your information see it. We treat you and your personal data with the utmost respect.

  2. Hello, i was wondering, after Quicken checks your credit score and approves your mortgage, is that credit score locked in for a certain time period or do they run it a second time before closing? Thanks

    1. Hi Joe:

      The required age of your credit report varies based on the type of loan you’re getting. I can tell you that it’s not unusual to have us run your credit to make sure nothing has changed during the process, but every situation is different.


      1. Hi,

        Here is my situation, I have my loan approved thru QL and mortgage commitment also done, in next the 72 hours I have my closing, but unfortunately some medical bill of $60 reported delinquency on my account…I immediately paid the amount in full last Friday…but still the credit bureaus are not updated yet. What should I do in this case? Does my closing will impact? Do I have my locked APR changes? Pls help me.

        1. Hi Lina:

          I’m going to get this over to our Client Relations team right away so that you can get the correct information on this and we can make sure things go as smoothly as possible over the next few days for you.


  3. Credco/quicken just did a hard pull on my credit rating and I have no idea why. Can someone please help me find out about this. Thank you

    1. Hi Sandra:

      That would be very odd if you didn’t apply with us. I’m going to get this over to our client relations team and have someone reach out to get to the bottom of this.

      Kevin Graham

  4. Great info!! I like the 14 day window. If an inquiry prevents u from getting a loan- Your problems were there and on ur report-before you tried to get a loan.

  5. Quicken loans did the same thing to me, I ask the guy to not run my credit because I was going away for about a month, I will pick up where I left off when I return he run my credit anyway, Quicken loan SUCKS, I will not recommend them to anyone..

    1. Hi Mitch:

      I’m sorry to hear this experience with us. I’m going to get this over to our client relations team so we can have someone look into it.

      Kevin Graham

    2. The same thing happened to me! i just called to ask about rates and weather theyd be able to do a mortgage. i was told that they would not pull a hard credit report. 20min later got a notification from the credit bureau that quicken loans pulled a hard credit report.

      1. Hi David,
        I’m very sorry to hear about your experience. I’m going to send this to our Client Relations team so they can look into your situation. Thank you for reaching out!

  6. Quicken did an amazing job for me in getting my mortgage % dropped significantly. I went from a 30 year loan to a 20 year loan & my monthly payment actually went down. If dropping your score by 13 points is going to keep you from getting a home loan them perhaps you aren’t financially ready to own one.

    1. Hi Susan:

      I’m glad we were able to help you and that you’re so happy! With that being said, we absolutely want to make sure everyone is ready to buy a home in their own time. This is the case whether it’s a credit issue or any other reason.


  7. This information in inaccurate, I just checked my credit and the only thing I have on my report are Hard Pulls. The information given here says that they will stay on your report for 6 months. There are several that are scheduled for 2 years. I had a few credit unions competing for my business, new car, and they have been on the report for over a year and are scheduled to come off in another year.

    1. Hi Dave,

      You would only see hard pulls because soft pulls don’t show up on all credit reports. It depends on the bureau. Also, the post is not saying that a credit pull only stays on your credit report for six months. Rather, it says it affects your credit score by five points for six months as an example. I hope this clears up any confusion.

      Kevin Graham

  8. Just called to get some info about getting preapproved for a mortage and the woman needed to check my credit, she said it would only affect my score little to non, in under 8 hours I got a notification saying they did a hard inquiry and my score went down 13 points!!! Now how am I gonna get a mortgage??? I’m pissed and now I have to raise hell to fix this. I DON’T RECOMMEND QUICKEN LOANS AT ALL! THEY ARE SCAMMERS

      1. Hi Sherae:

        I’m sorry to hear you’re having a poor experience. We’ll be happy to look into this for you and see what we can do to turn it around. I’m going to get this to our client relations team who will be in contact.

        Kevin Graham

  9. Steven, I had the exact same thing happen, they assured me that this was a soft pull and not a hard check. When i called back i was told I was lying, then I played the recorded audio for them since I record all of my calls and the lady got really mad and hung up on me because she said I didn’t have her permission to record her.

  10. I called Quicken to get more information about a loan, and without my authorization, they did a “hard pull” of my credit. It did in-fact lower my credit score; for that reason, I will never use or suggest quicken to any of my associates or friends.

  11. The inquiry thing kinda pisses me off though. There’s no reason I should be penalized for how much my credit is checked, it should only count for how often I actually open a new account or something.

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