Whenever you authorize a mortgage lender, creditor, employer or other business to check your credit report an "inquiry" is added to your report. An inquiry notes that someone has checked your credit. An inquiry usually stays on your credit report for two years.

While an inquiry by someone else will be noted; checking your own credit report is not.

A lender will look at the number of inquiries and when they took place. A large number of inquiries occurring in a short period may be interpreted as a sign that you are either:

- Applying for lots of credit because of financial difficulty, or Overextending yourself by taking on more debt than you can actually repay.

Therefore, it's always a good idea to minimize inquiries into your credit report. If you're shopping around for mortgage lenders who do bad credit mortgages, don't let every lender you consider run a credit check. Get a copy of your own credit report. This way you can provide the report directly to the lender, especially for quotes. Alternatively, you might have to settle for slightly more approximate estimates while you are shopping around, if the lender doesn't verify your credit history. However, be sure to explain to any lender what bad credit is on your report. That way, they can give you an accurate estimate. This is important. You'll need to know ahead of buying that property whether you can get a mortgage or not and from whom.