Will checking my credit report affect my credit score

Posted by Kelly Luff in Credit Reports on 7 April 2017 - Kelly is a Marketing Executive at checkmyfile

Does checking your credit report affect your credit score? This is a question we are often asked, as more and more consumers regularly access their credit history to check for errors.

It is often suggested that because a trail is left on your credit searches by a credit report check, it will impact your ability to gain credit in the same way as a full credit search would.

But instead of showing as a full search, in the same way that a credit card or loan application might, checking your credit report will show instead as an ‘Enquiry’ or ‘Audit’, which have no impact on your credit score and will not be taken into account by lenders.

Credit agencies have to place these markers on your credit report when they perform an enquiry, in the same way as a lender, to show that they have accessed your personal report data.

If you notice access has been made to your credit report from an agency without your knowledge, it could potentially show that someone else has checked this information fraudulently. You can then see which agency made the request, and when it was done, so that you are able to take further action.

When you check your credit report you will often see many of these types of audit or enquiry in addition to few full credit searches, particularly if you are checking multiple agencies with checkmyfile. Don’t be alarmed by these, you will often agree to this type of search on your report when you sign up for services such as price comparison and insurance.

When you sign up with a comparison service you will often see searches with all of the insurance companies and brokers that gave you a quote – this is purely because they will have wanted to check your publicly held information, such as Electoral Roll listings to verify your identity.

You can ask the company performing these checks to cease making them, as it is often found that they are repeated at least annually by lenders looking to send you offers to tempt you away from your current supplier. This can, however, be time consuming and as they don’t make any difference to your credit score it is optional as to whether you decide to invest resources into stopping them.

The only type of enquiry or audit that can be taken into account by lenders are those performed by debt collectors – they can show a potential lender that there may be a history of unpaid debts that no longer show within your 6 years of credit history.

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