When you apply for credit and a credit report is prepared for any company by a credit reporting agency, that will immediately appear on your credit report as an inquiry for use of credit and have a slight negative impact on your credit score. However, many credit scoring models account for use of credit within a short period of time. For instance, often scoring models will lump the same uses of credit into a single reduction, such as car dealers within a two-week period.
Tip: inspect used vehicles carefully, preferably with a mechanic for accident damage and engine or transmission issues, etc. The worst thing that you can do after discharging all your debt is to buy a used vehicle on credit that does not operate or is unsafe. Consumer Reports has more tips as does the non-profit consumer advocacy group, CARS. See links below.
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