What is a Pull and How Does it Affect You Credit Score?

A “pull” is when a potential creditor pulls your credit report, also called an inquiry.

People are told that inquiries can bring down your credit. This is true, but only by a few points. Other credit profile items, such as a new account or a late payment, can take off many more points.

The next layer is to determine if this is a soft pull, which doesn’t affect the credit score points, or a hard pull, which does.

A creditor does not need your permission for a soft pull, but they DO need your express permission for a hard pull.

Soft Pull Vs. Hard Pull

A soft pull is done by you straight to the CRA, or when a company buys a list of names with a certain characteristic. In the latter case, only the name and address are disclosed (like when you get those pre-approved offers). The same is true when your current creditors consider extending credit, or are just checking on you. No other entity, third party, or new lender/creditor can do a soft pull and give you a credit decision.

Therefore, in order to give you an approval, it will have to be a hard pull. And remember, a creditor needs your permission for a hard pull.

To learn more go to myFICO.com