Buying a Car

Your credit report and score set the pace for your down payment as well as the interest rate you will pay.

How Can My Credit Save Me Money?

There may be many auto loan options to consider based on your credit profile. Down payment, term of loan, and interest rate are the most important.

See what a lender sees when you apply for an auto loan.

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Under 620

  • The maximum amount you are permitted to borrow and your interest rate depend on two main factors, the lender and your credit score
  • Know your choices; there are many lenders who consider financing
  • Typically, a credit score under 620 should not prevent you from borrowing money to purchase a vehicle


  • May be able to negotiate better financing
  • Co-signer may be able to help in negotiating process
  • May be able to negotiate a lower rate as credit improves

680 and up

  • Most flexible financing options
  • More likely to receive cash back rebates
  • May be eligible for competitive interest rates and zero-interest financing
  • May be eligible for zero down payment financing

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Tips to Consider When Buying a Car

  • Shop rates. Auto loan inquiries will not hurt your score if bunched into a one or two week window. Typically, multiple inquiries are only counted once to make sure rate shopping isn't penalized.
  • Know your credit. Higher credit scores and shorter term loans may increase your chances of securing the best rate.
  • Buying vs. leasing? Similar credit rules apply. Know your required down payment along with the term of financing, mileage requirements, and interest rate.