Living with bad credit can be tough. When you have good credit, you can generally expect to qualify for loans, credit cards and other forms of credit. With bad credit, fewer lenders will be willing to take a chance on you. This can make it hard to get a line of credit.
Thankfully, there are some lenders out there who offer loans specifically for people with bad credit. This means that no matter how bad your credit is, there are ways to make it work—even if it means paying a higher APR or agreeing to special loan terms.
You can even buy a car with bad credit. Just like with credit cards and other types of loans, there are plenty of lenders who offer car loans for people with bad credit. However, it’s important you know what you’re getting into before you take on one of these loans. Here are some tips for shopping around for a car loan with bad credit, including how to find the loan that best fits your needs.
How Is Credit Calculated?
Your credit score, often simply referred to as your “credit,” is a sort of risk assessment score that’s calculated by combining various aspects of your financial situation. It’s used by auto financing companies to make loan decisions.
There are three major credit reporting bureaus, each of whom take note of your credit activity. This includes any applications you put in, how much credit you have available versus how much you have tied up, and how long you’ve had your credit cards for.
The most important factors in your credit score are the current available balance, payment consistency, and the average amount of time you’ve had your credit lines. This shows lenders that you have a long history of paying your bills on time, and that you’re not getting a loan when you’ve already got 100% of your credit tied up in other purchases.
You can check your credit score once a year by going to the Annual Credit Report website. All you have to do is request a copy of your credit report through the website and you can view it online. This will show you what’s affecting your credit score and give you an idea of what you can do to improve it. This is an important step to take before applying for a car loan.
Getting a Bad Credit Car Loan
Believe it or not, it’s not all that difficult to get a car loan with bad credit. There are plenty of lenders who are still willing to loan money to you, as long as you’re willing to agree to slightly less favorable terms. In fact, you can even get bankruptcy car loans.
The main difference between a standard car loan and a bad credit car loan is the APR. Since auto financing companies are taking a bigger risk by lending money to someone with bad credit, they expect a bigger reward which comes in the form of increased interest.
If you want to make the most out of your bad credit car loan, you may want to consider toying with the terms of your loan a bit. By shortening the length of your loan a bit, you’ll be increasing your monthly payments but decreasing the total amount of interest you’ll have to pay. The same goes for putting more money down, as every dollar you add to your down payment will be one dollar you don’t have to pay later.
You may also want to consider trading in your old car. If you have another car sitting around that you don’t need, trading it in can be a great way to get a good auto loan. Your car’s trade-in value will be taken away from the total amount you have to pay, which means you could save thousands by trading in what you consider to be an old hunk of junk.
Getting an auto loan with bad credit isn’t the preferred way of doing things, but it’s very much possible. Plus, with a little bit of shopping around and finagling of your loan terms, there’s a good chance that you can get a bad credit auto loan that won’t suck you dry—you just have to put the work in.