If someone is considering extending credit to you, they may view your credit report to analyze your credit history and determine how much credit they’ll extend.


Why do variations of the term “credit inquiry” matter?

Anyone accessing your credit report will be able to view not only your credit history, but personal details, such as any current (or previous) address, phone number, and employer that has been added to your credit report. So, it’s important that you know when you’re being asked to provide access to such sensitive information.


The primary reason for needing to be aware of the different phrases and terms for a “credit inquiry” is that an inquiry will result in either a hard or soft inquiry. A hard inquiry will not only typically decrease your credit score, the inquiry will be added to your tally of hard inquiries. It’s very common for lenders to deny credit if they feel that there are too many inquiries on the report. Sometimes, lenders are not always clear when seeking permission to perform a credit inquiry. This could result in unwanted hard inquiries and credit score decreases.


Common phrases and terms synonymous with “credit inquiry”

Below are a few common phrases and terms that may be used to refer to a credit inquiry.

  • Check your credit
  • Pull your credit
  • Review your credit
  • Run your credit
  • View your credit
  • Credit check
  • Credit inquiry
  • Credit pull
  • Credit review
  • Hit to your credit
  • Information from credit bureaus
  • Information from credit reports
  • Soft credit check
  • Soft credit inquiry
  • Soft credit pull
  • Hard credit pull
  • Soft hit
  • Hard hit
  • Soft pull
  • Hard pull
  • Hard credit check
  • Soft credit check
  • Hard check
  • Soft check


If you’re reading or hearing any of these terms or phrases, a credit report is being referenced. If they are seeking to perform a credit inquiry, you should determine the type of inquiry. If possible, get documentation of the inquiry type before providing permission. This will be important if you’re told beforehand that a soft inquiry would be done, but a hard inquiry was actually performed. You will want to get the hard inquiry removed as it will likely result in a score decrease.