Also known as a hard credit pull or hard credit check, lenders and creditors use hard credit inquiries to determine your creditworthiness when you apply for a loan or credit card. These inquiries will appear on your credit report and impact your credit score.
Yes. The only way to find the best interest rate to refinance your auto loan is for the lender to make an inquiry into your credit history.
Because credit scores can change without notice, an inquiry into your credit history is still necessary in order to find the best interest rate possible. Also, your score is only part of your credit file; lenders look at your full credit history before creating their offers.
No. A few lenders may look into your credit history after RateGenius has made the initial credit check.
Because of new credit regulations passed in 2004, you can make multiple credit inquiries related to a single transaction and your score will not be affected any further as long as the additional inquiries are made within 14 days of the initial credit check.
Credit reporting agencies, such as Equifax and Experian, provide promotional marketing lists of people who meet certain predetermined credit criteria (just names and addresses — not your entire credit file). This is a common form of direct marketing — credit card and mortgage offers are good examples of these types of promotions. We do direct marketing through these credit agencies with some of the lenders in our network. Please note that these types of promotions do not show up on your credit report and do not affect your credit score.
No. A credit inquiry by RateGenius for a prescreened offer is considered a “soft inquiry” by the credit reporting agency. The soft inquiry is used for marketing purposes only. This means your credit score is not affected.
Any information collected by RateGenius is only distributed to authorized agents or lenders within the RateGenius network, or as may be required by federal or state law or by court order. Otherwise, RateGenius will not sell or share any personal information in regards to yourself or with any person or organization without your authorization.
Hard credit inquiries can only be performed if you agree to them. However, if you notice an error on your credit report like a hard credit pull you never approved, you should dispute it with the credit bureaus. RateGenius will never perform a hard credit inquiry without your consent.
Under federal law, you have the right to obtain a free copy of your credit report from each of the nationwide consumer reporting agencies once a year. You can order a copy of your credit report by calling toll-free at 877-322-8228 or online by visiting www.annualcreditreport.com. RateGenius and any lender who pulls your credit is also required to send a notice of your credit score and reasons surrounding the approval or decline of your auto refinance application. These notices will be sent to you 5–7 business days after a decision on your application has been made, and a copy of your credit score disclosure notice will also be included in your loan package. If you receive a prescreened offer from a RateGenius mailer and you do not submit an application, you will not receive a credit notice.