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Soft Search Car Finance - What is it?

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When a lender or broker is considering your finance application, they have to conduct a background check. If your credit history is good, this shouldn’t be anything to worry about.

Unfortunately there’s a flaw in this method. If we did a full credit check when our customers apply for car finance, it will show up on their credit report, whereas a soft search car finance application will ensure that only you can see the search, not potential lenders. This means your credit score isn't affected in any way.


Stoneacre car finance application process

A full credit check alerts lenders that you’re looking for finance. If several searches pop up on your credit report, lenders might be reluctant to approve you because they think you are looking to take out multiple loans and view you as more of a risk.

Soft credit searches are the best way for us to qualify you for car credit. It doesn’t show up when lenders view your credit profile, so they won’t get scared off and it enables us to find the most suitable lender for your personal circumstances.


What is a hard credit search?

Calculator and pennies - credit search
Calculator and pennies - credit search

A hard credit search will leave a footprint on your credit report that will be visible to lenders. This type of search can affect your ability to get finance, as multiple hard searches left on your profile could give the impression that you are desperate for credit and cause you to be seen as more of a risk.

Close-up of car keys and document sign for credit
Close-up of car keys and document sign for credit

Here at Stoneacre, the initial application is always carried out using a soft search (also known as a quotation search) and a hard search will only be done once you are happy to proceed with your application. Our quick-and-easy process will allow different lenders to help get you the best possible deal.

Soft credit checks with Stoneacre

Orange car on finance on the road

You might be surprised to know that not many companies provide an initial soft search credit check during the comparison stage, putting your chances of getting a successful finance application at risk.

At Stoneacre, we don’t think you should be penalised for looking around for the best deal. We believe a soft credit check is best for our customers as there’s no affect on your credit profile. Lenders won’t see multiple applications over a short period, so you can take your time and find your ideal finance package.

If you borrow money and pay it back, it makes your credit rating better, and we offer a range of finance deals to suit your needs, such as interest free car finance and car finance with insurance.

How do they help your credit profile?

Interior of the car

We all know it’s important to keep an eye on your credit profile and keep it up to date. If you have many finance applications on your credit report, it has an effect on your future lending.

For example, if you were unsuccessful when you applied, it can appear like you’re not a reliable candidate for finance. We think this is unfair, as you might have been unsuccessful due to numerous hard credit checks carried out by lenders whilst they were trying to find you the best deal.

Here at Stoneacre, we do a soft credit check. This means we can see if you’re eligible for finance without anything impacting your credit score. Our main goal is that you get the best finance deal to suit your circumstances and we work with a panel of mainstream and alternative lenders in order to achieve this.

You have nothing to lose as your credit rating is unaffected; it’s just as good as it was when you started.

Applying for soft search car finance


Applying for soft search finance couldn’t be easier. An initial application won't affect your credit score at all and just gives us an idea of your eligibility for finance. Only then, if you want to proceed with your application will a hard search be made.


There’s no need to worry if your financial footprint isn’t the best though; we always take your individual circumstances into account and are adept at helping people with bad credit.


Check if you’re eligible for car finance by filling out our quick-and-easy application form and a member of our award-winning car finance team will get in touch to help guide you through the whole process.


Finance Disclosure


For the purpose of this promotion Stoneacre is not acting as a lender but as an independent credit broker working with a panel of lenders. A list of these lenders is available upon request. Stoneacre do not charge a fee for an introduction to a finance provider, however, we may or may not receive a commission.


Decidebloom Ltd t/a Stoneacre, Omega Boulevard, Capitol Park, Thorne, DN8 5TX, is authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority. Our FCA number is 308726. You can verify this by visiting the FCA website or by contacting the FCA on 0800 111 6768.


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