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Best Personal Loans with Soft Credit Check

February 2024

Are you in the market for a loan and want to limit hard checks on your credit report? Here is SuperMoney's list of the best personal loans with a soft credit check.
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There are hundreds of lenders offering personal loans, so finding the best offer can be a challenge. It is smart to apply with multiple lenders to see which one offers the best rates and terms. However, every loan application can shave off a few points from your credit score. Some lenders allow you to check your rates and loan terms with a soft credit pull, which doesn't hurt your credit score.
This is SuperMoney's list of the top personal loans with a soft credit check.

Methodology

This list of the most recommended personal loans with soft credit checks is generated using SuperMoney's advanced algorithms. We also analyze features such as fees, interest rates, and other charges, along with feedback from the SuperMoney community.

Common Questions on Personal Loans with a Soft Credit Check

What does a soft credit check mean?

A soft credit check for a personal loan is a type of credit inquiry that doesn't damage your credit score. Soft credit checks occur when lenders prescreen potential clients for offers or when you check your own credit report.

Is a soft credit check the same as a soft inquiry?

Soft credit checks are also known as soft pulls and soft inquiries; one process, three different names. This type of inquiry doesn't affect your credit score.

So, what is a hard credit check?

A hard check, also known as a hard pull or hard credit inquiry, is a credit inquiry that does get recorded in your credit report. The main difference between a hard inquiry and a soft inquiry is that a soft inquiry will not hurt your credit score. A hard inquiry will shave off a few points from your credit score. However, if you do qualify for a loan and you make regular and timely payments, it could help you improve your credit score in the long run.

What shows up on a soft credit check?

A soft credit inquiry will show lenders the same information you see when you check your credit report. This includes your lines of credit, loans, payment history, and any collections accounts.

Why do lenders need to do these credit checks?

Lenders use soft inquiries to determine the credit risk of consumers. If a borrower's credit risk is high, their loan application will be either denied or the loan's interest rates will be high. Lenders also use soft pulls to prescreen potential clients. If you have ever received a loan or credit card offer in the mail, it is likely the company first performed a soft pull on your credit report.

How long does a soft check stay on my credit record?

Soft inquiries can stay on your credit report for 12 to 24 months. However, lenders can't see them. You'll be able to see them, but they won't show up when lenders look at your credit report.

Why do I need to avoid hard credit inquiries?

A hard credit check will stay on your credit report for 24 months. Every hard inquiry can lower your credit score by 5-10 points. The problem comes when you have several hard checks. Lenders that see six or more hard pulls on your report may conclude you are a significant risk.

What is the benefit of getting prequalified for multiple personal loans?

Getting prequalified can be a smart move if you are shopping for a personal loan because it allows you to compare the rates and terms of the best lenders in the market without hurting your credit. It's also an excellent way to determine the likelihood of having your loan approved.
Soft inquiries are how lenders check your creditworthiness to preapprove you for offers. Remember that preapproval is not a guarantee that you will get the loan. The lender will have to verify all your information and perform a hard pull on your credit before you can access your money.

What do you need to prequalify for a loan?

To get prequalified for a personal loan with SuperMoney's loan offer engine you only need to provide some basic personal information (name, address, date of birth) and your social security number. This information is used to confirm your identity.
  • Complete a preapproval form with information about your occupation, income, and current debt.
  • The lender will do a soft credit check to evaluate your credit score and history. From this, a lender can determine your credit risk as a consumer.
  • Your application will be either accepted or declined. If you're granted prequalification, you'll get specific information about the loan, such as the loan amount and rate.
  • If you accept the offer, you'll be able to apply formally for a personal loan. This could require further verification and information.
Prequalification is a quick process. Some lenders only want you to answer a few questions online, although the exact steps will vary from lender to lender. SuperMoney's loan offer engine allows you to prequalify with multiple leading lenders using a single form.

About the Author


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SuperMoney is the most comprehensive financial services comparison site around. We have published hundreds of personal finance articles and provide detailed reviews on thousands of financial products and services. Our unbiased advice and free comparison tools help consumers make smart financial decisions based on hard data, not marketing gimmicks.

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