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Fact: Applications for new credit and loan accounts can cause a small drop in your credit score. But you may still be able to comparison shop without causing major damage. Today's lenders understand that consumers comparison shop. If, for example, you are shopping for a new car or home, you may rate shop, which may result in multiple inquiries. Generally speaking, if there are multiple inquiries of the same type on your credit report within a 30-day window, they may be grouped together into one less-damaging "inquiry period. In fact, some lenders even consider like inquiries over broader timeframes to be for comparison shopping purposes and don't weigh them negatively. Still, it is best for your credit score if you limit the number of applications to only what is necessary and keep them all within a few days.