Will checking my own credit report through Experian lower my score?
Requesting a copy of your own credit report will not affect your credit scores. An inquiry will be added to your report as a record that you requested it. This type of inquiry is sometimes called a "soft" inquiry because it is shown only to you with a couple of exceptions.
Soft inquiries on your credit report are only visible to you, except: (1) insurance companies may be able to see other insurance company inquiries; and (2) inquiries by debt settlement companies you have authorized to access your report may be shared with your current creditors.
These inquiries have no effect on your credit score as they are never considered as a factor in credit scoring models. Soft inquiries are not disputable but are available for reference. Therefore, you can check your own credit report as often as you like with no effect on your credit scores.
Other "soft" inquiries include those for insurance or employment purposes, in order to make a prescreened offer of credit, and inquiries by creditors with which you already do business.
Inquiries shown to lenders, sometimes referred to as "hard" inquiries, result from your application for credit or other services. They are shared because they represent potential new debt that doesn't yet appear in your credit report as an account.
That unknown debt represents potential risk, so "hard inquiries" can affect lending decisions and credit scores, although the impact is typically small and short-lived.
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- The "Ask Experian" team
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