Soft credit searches allow lenders to assess whether they think they’ll be able to approve you for a loan before you apply. They’re invisible to other lenders (so won't hurt your credit score) but you'll be able to see them on your credit file.

When we calculate your personalised rates for a Zopa loan, we use a soft credit search.

There's also such thing as a "hard credit search". It's similar to a soft credit search, but it shows up to other lenders (and can affect your credit score).

We only do a hard credit search when you submit your final application for the loan.

Both types of search take place with the help of a credit reference agency.

In the market for a loan? Be sure to check which kind of search a lender does and when.

Was this helpful?