How to Finance A Car with Less than Perfect Credit

So you’re ready to buy a car but you, like many of us, worry that your credit isn’t good enough to finance the vehicle you need or want.

Here at Krietz Auto, we understand your predicament and we take steps to make sure that even buyers with less than ideal credit ratings, still have the opportunity to walk away with the automobile of their dreams.

Credit Report 

Maybe you are bogged down by student loan debt that you’ve fallen behind on in the past, or you’ve missed some payments on your credit card. This activity can reflect poorly in your credit report, but a lower credit score can also be caused by inaccuracies in your credit history. 

The first step in financing a new vehicle is to get informed about your credit by requesting a copy of your credit report from one of the big three reporting bureaus –Experian, TransUnion, and Equifax.

According to the Federal Trade Commission , you’re actually entitled to one free copy of your credit report every 12 months, so now is the time to take advantage.

The FTC suggests you order your report online from, the only authorized website for free credit reports, or call 1-877-322-8228. You will need to provide your name, address, social security number, and date of birth to verify your identity.


Before you come in to shop, plan. Adjust your monthly budget to include the expenses equated with buying a car. This can include things like:

  • Monthly Loan/Lease Payment
  • Auto Insurance Premium
  • Fuel Economy Estimates
  • Fees for Vehicle Tags, Registration, Licensing, Emissions Testing, State Inspection, Documentation, etc.
  • State and Local Taxes on Your Vehicle
  • Maintenance and Repair Costs
  • Value Depreciation

Your budget should also include a complete inventory of your income and monthly expenses. From this you can gauge a comfortable price range for your vehicle purchase. According to the advisors at Money Under 30, this is the rule of thumb to follow:


Meaning: “when buying a car, you should put down at least 20 percent. You should finance the car for no more than 4 years, and you should keep your monthly car payment (including your principal, interest, insurance and other expenses) at or below 10 percent of your gross (i.e. pre-tax) monthly income.”

According to them, your total cost for buying a vehicle can fall in the range of 10 to 50 percent of your gross annual income.

Want to see what you’d probably end up paying for a $20,000 car?

You can try our free payment calculator for a general estimate of your monthly vehicle payment. 

Find A Good Loan Program

The biggest thing to keep in mind about trying to buy a vehicle when you have a lower credit score is that the financing lender you choose may ask you to reach some additional requirements before they offer you a loan.

According to our COO Laura Bowen-Krietz, these requirements can include anything from proof of income, proof of residence or even personal references.

She explained that Krietz works with lenders who are willing to make deals with clients who have challenged credit.

“If you have any concerns about your ability to finance a vehicle, we suggest you fill out our credit application, so we can get the process started on an approval for you.”

She warned that the process to get approved takes time. So remember to be patient!

Looking for Your Next Vehicle? Check out Our Inventory!


Categories: Finance


Nothing posted yet.
Post a Comment