How much will an inquiry hurt my scores?
Many people starting credit repair programs express concern over inquiries. There are some cases where inquiries can have a considerable impact on your scores and other cases where they have none. And in all cases the impact of an credit inquiry will fade fairly quickly, so when we are planning a credit repair strategy for a client we will weigh the value of disputing inquiries.
The Score Impact Will Vary
An inquiry will lower your score between 1 and 5 points depending on the overall content of your credit report. The more established your credit the smaller impact a single inquiry will have. And conversely, if your credit is very limited a single inquiry will have a larger effect. This is logical. From the FICO score perspective a consumer with established credit should be able to handle a new account with fewer prospects for failure than a consumer without a proven track record.
Nice Exceptions to the Rule
There is an interesting wrinkle you should know about as you are getting your credit repair program underway. In the case of both mortgage and automobile financing you can have as many inquiries as you wish in any 45 day period of time and they will only count as a single inquiry for score calculation purposes. In addition, the score hit cannot take effect for thirty days. This was implemented by Fair Isaac to accommodate intelligent financial shopping.