There are many great deals available to purchase a new car. You may find zero percent financing, value added incentives or grace periods with no payments. It is a buyer's market when it comes to buying a car. However, getting financed for a new car can be a difficult route. Many lenders will not lend to people with less than perfect credit. So, before you go shopping for that new car you need to take control of your credit to insure that you receive the best terms and rates available. Getting your credit in shape before going into the dealership will give you the power when it comes time to negotiate your loan.
The first step is to find out where you stand now. Order a copy of your credit report. In the report you will find your current score and you can verify that everything listed in the report is accurate. Then you will have the opportunity to dispute any errors in your report. Potential lenders will look at your credit report immediately after you fill out a loan application, so it is important that you have the same information that they will have.
Your credit score is one of the most important factors that the lender will take into consideration when giving you a loan.
There are many websites on the internet which provide your credit report. The government will give you a copy of your credit report from each of the three major credit bureaus once per year for free. You will have to pay a couple of bucks to see your actual score, but this is a fantastic service. There are also companies which will give you a free report if you sign up with credit monitoring service.
Once you have the report, look beyond the score to what is in it. The lender will be looking at your payment history, the total amount that you owe, the length of your credit history, new applications for credit and the types of credit that you currently have. If you see any errors you will need to get them cleared up prior to going to the car dealer or bank and applying for an auto loan.
The second step is to go ahead and secure your financing. Going to the dealership for financing is probably the easiest way to get a new car, but generally not the spot for the best loan. Getting pre-approved from a bank or an online lender can often get you a better interest rate and better terms than what you would find at the dealership. Also, a pre-approval will let you know how much you can afford to spend, which will help you zone in on the perfect new vehicle.
If you choose to go to the dealer for financing that is a route that works for many. However, it is always a good idea to check around and see what others can offer. If you present competition to the dealer they will often be able to meet or beat the loan pre-approval that you got from the outside source.
Once you're confident of your credit worthiness, and you've been pre-approved for an auto loan, you'll be better positioned to take advantage of the many deals available to summer auto buyers.