Dear Liz: As part of our mortgage refinance, my wife and I were provided copies of our credit reports and scores by the credit union making our loan. Our scores are great, ranging from 777 to 819, but I was surprised to see in the negative remarks section a note that I had “too many inquiries.” Reviewing the list I saw one business I recognized (a new brokerage account), one of our credit card issuers and four inquiries from CBC Innovis. What is CBC Innovis and how can I tell them to butt out of my credit history? I’m just glad I have good credit and their poking around didn’t have a material effect on our ratings. Others might not be so fortunate.
Answer: CBC Innovis is a reporting agency that provides a variety of services, including offering credit reports, tax transcripts and appraisal, title and settlement services to lenders.
If the inquiries weren’t connected to your refinance deal, they might be related to a job application, because CBC Innovis also provides employment screening and Social Security number validation. It offers skip tracing and other services for collection agencies and landlords, but given your scores and your situation, those are unlikely reasons for the inquiries.
In any case, you have nothing to be worried about. The only reason you got the “too many inquiries” message is because there wasn’t much else negative to say about your credit situation, which is excellent. Inquiries in general should be a minor concern for most people, since most have little or no effect on their scores.
Unfortunately, it’s pretty tough to tell a company to “butt out” of your credit history, since a variety of companies have perfectly legal access to your information. If you really want to lock down your reports, you can consider a credit freeze, but you’ll still have to “unlock” your information to various companies when you want a loan. For more on credit freezes, visit the Consumers Union website and search on “security freeze.”