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I see posts every week wherein a CBer laments over their INQs after allegedly being denied credit for having too many HPs. I say "allegedly" because this is almost never the real reason. It's just the "on-the-record" or "official" reason the lender slaps onto the AA (adverse action) Letter to explain the decision -- a decision based entirely upon different info that isn't listed in their drop-down menu of excuses reasons. I think of it like the world of dating. When s/he says, "It's not you...it's me," that's my cue to read between the lines and take a hard look at reality. When a lender says it's about INQs, it's (almost always) a cop-out. Here's my take on the meanings behind a lender using "Too Many INQs" as a denial factor: If few or none resulted in approvals, then my credit file is still too dirty for most lenders...including THIS one. I need to be cleaning, not app-ing. If they're from approvals that haven't yet reported, my profile is decent (or maybe even excellent) and the lender is nervous about my low AAOA. They see it as an indication of escalating exposure risk. I need to be gardening, not app-ing. If they're from new accounts already listed on my profile, they'll tell me to "let those age" and will suggest that I apply again in X months. Plus -- and this is where it gets fun for them -- they'll take great pleasure in tacking on the following reasons: Time Since Most Recent Account Opening Is Too Short Length Of Time Revolving Accounts Have Been Established Another bogus reason I often see is "Proportion Of Loan Balances To Loan Amounts Is Too High" -- of course my newly refinanced vehicle loan is at nearly 100% utilization. Duh. And those student loans I look forward to paying off in 2097...? Yup. Those, too, are proportionately high, Captain Obvious. So here's what happens when you spend a lot of time and money to B* your INQs and the lender CAN'T slap "excessive HPs" onto the list: NOTE: More than $150K in revolving lines; 2 cards (yes, TWO) reported balances of less than $20 And here's how "adversely affected" my credit score was by the factors listed above: Still denied, because #3 applies, sans the "Too Many INGs" BS. It only means the list of reasons for "no" is one line shorter. In summary, inquiries are not your problem. [For full disclosure, this is the AA notice on a failed attempt to recon the starting limit ($10K) on my most recent Barclays approval.]