Do Free Credit Scores Hurt Your Credit?
There’s a lot of new free services that exist, and everyone seems to be utilizing them to their advantage, but are they detrimental to your actual credit score, meaning will they hurt your score?
In short, no.
Many people assume that these services will cost them in points, by way of “hard inquiries“, but these services are actually producing ‘soft inquiries’. In this case the inquiries are known as consumer initiated inquiries. These types of inquiries don’t get calculated in your credit scores, so there is no need to be worried about using those free services (CreditKarma, for instance), or even all of them at once, if you wanted.
When you sign up for these services you will be required to prove who you are, to ensure that someone else isn’t attempting to look at your credit profile. You’ll need to enter all of your information, such as name, address, social security, DOB, etc; basically everything you would need if someone else (ie, a Car Dealership, Mortgage Company, etc) was going to pull up your credit profile.
Once you’ve entered this information you will be required to do a bit more to prove who you are. This usually consists of choosing your old/current home address, an old car or some other random question. Some of these won’t even be you, which is why they exist – to prove you aren’t trying to trick the system. Just be sure that you look over these questions closely so you don’t choose the wrong answers which will cause the system to detect fraud! Trust me, I’ve had this done by accident and it’s not very fun.
We believe that you should sign up for these services to protect your credit. Your score will not be affected in any way, nor will your chances of getting approved for that new credit card, car loan or mortgage!
Remember, soft inquiries do not affect your credit and all of these self credit services use soft inquiries when they pull up your information.