Credit applications can cost someone a few points on a credit score because of the inquiries into the applicant's credit, according to Experian. The exact impact varies by the number and timing of the inquiries and a combination of other scoring criteria.
Practically, creditors don't base their overall evaluation of an applicant's credit worthiness on a few inquiry notes, according to Experian, although numerous recent inquiries combined with other negative marks on a report may have an impact. Credit applications only affect someone's credit when submitted by the prospective borrower. When credit card providers extend unsolicited promotional offers based on a review of credit, no inquiry hit occurs.