Managing your finances can be a scary thing, especially when it comes to credit. And while everyone needs to have credit at some point, most people don’t have a firm grasp on the subject. A wealth of misinformation surrounding credit reports and scores abounds, and misinformation always makes things spookier. That’s why we’re here to demystify some “ghost stories” you might have heard about credit reports. 

Why are people afraid to check their credit reports? 

People often hesitate to check their credit reports because they’re scared of finding out that they have a low score. Low scores could be a result of an unpaid loan, credit card debt, or several other factors. Finding out you have a low score can be disheartening, especially in the face of other financial difficulties. What many don’t consider, however, is that it’s actually riskier to avoid pulling your credit report than it is to check it.   

Avoiding checking your credit report comes with risks

When people don’t routinely check their credit reports, they run the risk of letting errors remain on their reports that can negatively impact their credit scores. These errors may occur for several reasons, depending on the circumstances. It may be due to inaccurate information that a creditor has provided or even some sort of fraud. Not only can these types of errors negatively impact your score, they can also keep you from getting better credit offers.  

But won’t checking my credit report lower my credit score?

This is the financial equivalent of a campfire ghost story that has spooked many people over the years. The answer is simple: no, checking your credit report won’t lower your credit score. This common misconception stems from a misunderstanding of hard and soft inquiries. 

The term soft inquiry refers to checking your own credit report, and this will not lower your credit score. The type of inquiry that will impact your credit score is known as a hard inquiry. These occur when a lender you’ve applied for credit with pulls your credit report when looking to make a decision. Hard inquiries appear on your credit report and can affect your credit score, though even this won’t impact it too harshly or for very long. 

Checking your credit report is easy with ScoresMatter

If you’ve ever feared checking your credit report, you can put those fears to bed. Checking your credit report periodically can be beneficial for your credit score, and it’s also easy with ScoresMatter! Many people don’t know where to track down your credit report, which is why we’ve made it simple. We offer credit reports and scores, including tools designed to help you manage your digital and financial footprint.  

Tap into the Digital You with ScoresMatter, and don’t let these credit misconceptions scare you away from knowing your score today! 

Sources: CNBC, Experian