I just added an article to AustinMarketInfo.com regarding factors that affect your credit score:
Since your FICO score affects so much of your life these days, it is important to understand how to raise it or to keep it high.
The five factors included in that article are consistent with information provided by Fair Isaac Corporation — the company that calculates FICO scores. One item that I hear questioned frequently is not addressed in that article, but is discussed on Fair Isaac’s website: “Will credit inquiries hurt my credit score?” Here’s the answer “from the horse’s mouth,” so to speak:
“The score does not count ‘consumer-initiated’ inquiries – requests you have made for your credit report, in order to check it. It also does not count ‘promotional inquiries’ – requests made by lenders in order to make you a ‘pre-approved’ credit offer – or ‘administrative inquiries’ – requests made by lenders to review your account with them. Requests that are marked as coming from employers are not counted either.
It is also generally true that “shopping” two or three potential sources for a single loan — a mortgage loan, for example — should not significantly impact your credit score, whereas applying for a mortgage loan, a new car loan, a “same as cash” arrangement to buy new furniture, and a couple of new credit cards all at the same time may well create real problems.
It is always worth checking your credit report — free once each year at www.AnnualCreditReport.com — but note that that information will not include your FICO scores from the three credit bureaus. You will need to pay for your credit scores, but if you are concerned or just interested, it is probably worth the price.