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Bad Credit Cars - Loans for Bad Credit Cars : Making the Best Out of a Bad Situation - What are Bad Credit Car Loans?, Get Your Credit Score, Shop Around

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You can hardly turn on the TV or radio without hearing things like “bad credit, no credit, no problem!” coming from ad after ad, car dealership after car dealership. Everyone needs transportation, including those with less-than-perfect credit. And car dealerships know this all too well, with some even going as far as to cater exclusively to this market. But beware! The hard fact is, if you must finance a car while your credit is less than ideal, you will have to pay more than someone with a spot-free credit record. But this guide will show you how to minimize that damage, so you can get the best deal you possibly can.

Get Your Credit Score

The first thing to do before shopping for a loan is pull your free credit report (if you haven’t already done so recently). All consumers get a free annual credit report from each of the three major credit bureaus every year. To get yours, visit AnnualCreditReport.com. This way, you can get a sense of exactly where you stand in the eyes of creditors, and potentially find mistakes that you can clear up, which can then lower the interest rate you get. Your car loan interest rate will depend primarily on this credit history.

Shop Around

Like all big purchases, it pays to shop around plenty before you buy. Start from the comfort of your own home on a site like CarMax.com, where you can get a ballpark feel for different car prices. Use their loan calculator feature to figure out how much different interest rates will affect your payments. You can even apply for actual financing there as well, but it may be a good idea to hold off until you’re fairly sure that you’ll make a purchase. It can reflect negatively on your credit history when creditors think that you’re running around requesting credit from every place that will offer it, so narrow it down to the top picks before actually making a funding request.

Read the Fine Print

Many poor/no-credit dealerships make a lot of their money in fees, finance charges, and other penalties. Make sure you understand every fee and penalty that the dealer is proposing. If it seems like they’re just stacking the cards against you, don’t be afraid to use the next tip:

Your Trump Card: Never Be Afraid to Walk Away

Remember, in the end, this is your money we’re talking about. If the dealer tries to make you jump through too many hoops or pay too many unreasonable fees, find another dealer. Chances are, the dealer’s tune will change very quickly when he realizes that he is about to lose a sale. By not investing yourself too much in a single car or a particular dealership, you protect yourself from unnecessary stress and thousands of dollars in potential costs.

Live Within Your Means

Especially while you are trying to rebuild your credit, it’s extremely important to live within your means. Make absolutely sure that you’ll be able to keep your head above water with the car that you’ve got your eye on. Instead of getting a brand new car, opt for a used one that does the job just as well. It will be much easier and less expensive for you to get the car of your dreams later on, when your credit is pristine and shining again. For now, it’s time to buckle down and keep yourself from repeating the same mistakes that got you bad credit in the first place.

The Best Road: Repair Your Credit History

Of course, one of the best things you could do is stick it out with the beater car you have now while rebuilding your credit, so you can get the best rates possible in the future. If you do, you’ll find the process a whole lot easier and less expensive. The Federal Trade Commission has some useful advice for repairing credit here on their site. The most important thing is to live within your means, set budgets and make your payments.

That’s it for this quick and easy guide to bad credit car loans. Follow these tips to save yourself potential headaches and wallet-aches at the dealership, and you’ll be riding high again soon!

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