Everybody likes to have good credit, but despite healthy financial habits and smart money savvy, that 740 FICO score can be hard to come by. Bad credit, even just a few points below average, can seriously affect anyone’s ability to be approved for the best credit cards, mortgages, and even auto loans.
While it’s a difficult enough task to rebuild one’s credit standing, it can be even harder to succeed financially when bad credit stands in the way, especially when it comes to buying a car. There’s nothing worse than getting saddled with sky high interest rates, a dealer’s yo-yo financing ploys, or worse, settling for the car you don’t want, all on account of poor credit (or no credit at all).
With auto loans, bad credit seems to always rule out the best deals. Fortunately, there are alternatives out there, and there are plenty of great auto loans for people with bad credit.
Poor credit auto loans are designed to help consumers actively looking to rebuild their credit. With recent economic downturns, lenders and other financial backers are more reluctant than ever to extend lines of credit to people with even the most impressive credit histories. That’s why seeking out auto loans from a number of alternative sources — tailored for those with bad credit — can benefit anyone financially (and avoid compromise on financing or leasing the car of one’s choice).
How can a person with bad credit benefit from a bad credit auto loan? Poor credit or not, paying off a loan in a timely manner builds credit and leaves one in better standing with major credit bureaus. From subprime to prime, these steps can go a long way towards putting someone in line for better loans and lines of credit down the road.
There are many ways to obtain an auto loan with bad credit:
1. Credit unions are often open to offering a low-interest auto loan to a member with bad credit. Financial nonprofits which rely on their member base as support, credit unions are a good alternative to car financing through a dealer.
2. Good faith money. If a customer can front a larger down payment for the vehicle they’ve got in mind, a dealer or lender may be more likely to grant them an auto loan with a lower interest rate.
3. Co-signing/peer-to-peer. What to do if you’re seeking a bad credit- or even no-credit auto loan? Asking a trusted friend or family member to lend the money gives leeway in paying off a car debt. Another alternative is asking a family member with good credit to co-sign. While this is an opportunity to pay off a loan and rebuild credit, remember that neglecting the debt or falling behind on payments affects the co-signer’s credit, too.
The point of obtaining a bad credit car loan is to never seek one out again. But even auto loan rates for people with good credit are affected by a plethora of factors, like the make, model, age and condition of a car, not to mention the price. That’s why it’s important for people with poor or no credit to rebuild their credit scores and histories as soon as possible.
Apart from securing a bad credit auto loan, avoiding credit card debt, paying off bills on time and keeping a healthy amount of revolving credit are all ways to keep your credit current and healthy.