What Are the Best Tips for Getting an Auto Loan with Bad Credit?

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  • Written By: Malcolm Tatum
  • Edited By: Bronwyn Harris
  • Last Modified Date: 04 October 2018
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Obtaining an auto loan with bad credit is somewhat more difficult than purchasing a car with good credit, but it is not impossible. There are several different strategies that can be employed to obtain financing, even if the debtor has experienced some financial setbacks that has left his or her credit score somewhat damaged. Most of these approaches will require settling for a higher interest rate, but the good news is that bad credit car loans often aid in the process of rebuilding credit ratings, making it possible to obtain a car loan with a more competitive rate of interest in the future.

Before attempting to secure an auto loan with bad credit, it is a good idea to obtain copies of current credit reports. Doing so makes it possible to see exactly what potential lenders will see when they pull copies of one or more of those reports. If there is information that is outdated or incorrect, steps can be taken to update the information, which may in turn actually improve the credit scores. With a slightly higher credit score, the chances of being approved for a car loan are improved, and the potential of obtaining a better interest rate is also enhanced.


Once the credit reports are reviewed and verified, focus attention on car dealers who specialize in providing car loans to consumers who have less than perfect credit. In some cases, these dealers will have their own in-house financing option that allows consumers to tender a down payment, then make installments on the balance over a specified period of time. Unlike car loans obtained from banks, this type of auto loan is usually structured for weekly or bi-weekly payments, depending on how often the consumer receives a paycheck from his or her work. Qualifications for this type of auto loan with bad credit normally focus on generating a minimum amount of income per calendar month and being on the job for at least a certain amount of time. Some lenders of this type offer the benefit of an automated withdrawal from a checking account in order to manage the payment process.

While in-house financing is one way to obtain an auto loan with bad credit, keep in mind that the interest rates applied to these types of loans can be significant. Attempting to qualify for a car loan through a bank may be a better option. While high-risk car loans through banks also carry a higher rate of interest, the terms are usually easier to manage than the in-house financing offered by used car dealers, in that a monthly payment is usually what is required. The application of that interest rate is also likely to be more favorable, which saves the consumer money over the life of the loan.

Don’t assume that just because your credit is less than perfect that it is impossible to obtain an auto loan with bad credit. There are options that will help anyone who has a steady job and earns at least a minimum amount of money each month. Make sure that you understand the terms in the loan contract and the obligation you are assuming before signing the loan contract. As long as the payments are made on time, you can enjoy the benefits of reliable transportation and rebuilding your credit rating at the same time.



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