Unless you seek to borrow funds from your friends or relatives or from a lender who is not a part of the mainstream organized financial structure you cannot circumvent an inquiry into your credit score. Thus whenever an applicant applies for a loan or a new credit card the prospective lender will seek the applicants credit report to assess their credit health and then based on that they will decide whether to accept the application or not. Credit check is not only a part of the screening process used by lenders when assessing potential candidates but it is the first step in that process. So the borrower or an applicant can do nothing about a financial institution seeking their CIR when applying for credit. However is this a cause of worry?
Impact of a Bank Pulling Your Credit Report:
Banks or any other lender seeking the applicant’s report is part of the screening process and is beneficial to both the lender and borrower. Lenders can eliminate applicants who pose a threat of default as may be revealed by their credit score and for the borrower it means a more objective process of screening which is not based on subjective factors. So what happens when a bank pulls the CIR of an individual?
A credit report consists of various sections and each section has information related to that aspect respectively. There is a personal information section which will have details about name, contact details and so on for the person; the accounts details section will have details about home loans, personal loans, auto loans, all credit cards that a person may have and so on while the inquiries section will have details about the inquiries that have been made about the credit score of the individual. Thus which financial institution sought the report of the applicant and when will be recorded in this section. There are five aspects that are taken into account when the credit score is calculated. Inquiries information is one of the five factors and each inquiry can cause the credit score to fall.
So is there a Cause of Worry?
Despite hard inquiries causing a dip in the credit score there is no reason to worry about it when a bank seeks the CIR. This is due to a couple of reasons; the first reason being that each hard enquiry will cause a dip of only five points or so in the score. The actual impact will depend on some other aspects also; if there are few accounts and the credit history is not very deep then the impact of each hard inquiry will be slightly higher. When there are a larger number of accounts and the credit history is deeper then each inquiry will have a comparatively lesser impact on credit score.
Though hard inquiries are taken into account when calculating the score but their weightage is only 10% thus their actual impact is very less when compared to other aspects like repayment history and credit utilization ratio. Thus if one has been responsible in paying their dues on time in the past and has also been a responsible credit card user their overall score is expected to be good. If there are missed payments, high credit utilization ratio and too many unsecured loans in the credit report then there is not much that can be done. In such a scenario a bank pulling your report will just worsen the score slightly.
So unless one makes reckless applications for loans there should not be a cause of worry. When calculating the score only inquiries that were made in the past two years are considered which should reduce the stress level for any applicant.
When applying for a loan the applicant should ensure that they check the eligibility criteria of the lender so that they are sure of their application being accepted. Also stay away from applying for a loan or fresh credit unless absolutely necessary, this will save you from unnecessary hard inquiries and any impact on the credit rating.