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Buying a Used Car With Bad Credit: What You Need to Know

by Wheel City Auto
12/2/2015 - Sioux Falls, SD

Buying a used vehicle from any dealership can be confusing. 

Between monthly payments, sales taxes, add-ons, co-signers, credit scores and different forms of insurance, you need to consider many things before making a decision.

Following are important tips to help you make an informed decision about what type of used car is best for you, and how to get it—even with bad credit.

Know your credit score

Before beginning the process, know your credit score. It will have an impact on the financing you qualify for. Credit scores typically range from 300 to 850; the lower the score, the higher the interest rate for financing is likely to be.

Don’t know how to find your score? Make an online request from any of the credit bureaus—such as Experian, Equifax or Transunion—to send a credit report at no cost to your home address. Alternatively, instant free scores are available online via an iOS or Android app such as Credit Karma.  

Look carefully at your credit report—errors are common. If there are items that you do not recognize, report them online to all three credit bureaus without delay. This is has the benefit of improving your score.

Unlike other dealerships, Wheel City Auto Finance Centers reports on-time payments to credit bureaus as customers pay off their loans. This is one excellent way to build your credit back up to where it should be, and staff at Wheel City Auto wants you to succeed.  

Having bad credit doesn't automatically disqualify you from buying a car from Wheel City Auto Finance Centers. Finance staff looks at other factors such as your length of residence and time at your current job, personal and work references and other stability factors.  

Decide your limit

Before purchasing a vehicle, have a good idea of what you are looking for. 

Think about the size of car you need, what brands you prefer, how many miles you can accept, and the total you can afford to pay. Because monthly payments may carry on for different lengths of time, think in terms of the total you will be able to pay, rather than monthly payments. This can save money. 

Do your research

Perform due diligence on the car before signing on the dotted line.

The most important thing is to find the vehicle's history. Use the Vehicle Identification Number (VIN) to use services such as Carfax or AutoCheck for previous ownership, maintenance, service history and accident history. 

Research the type of car you want before making a firm decision. Look at objective reviews, such as Consumer Reports findings about that make and model, especially in terms of reliability and durability. Making the decision and then doing the research to purchase a vehicle can tie you up in knots. But the process really doesn't have to be a nightmare. 

Come in to a Wheel City Auto Finance Center location in Sioux Falls or Rapid City South Dakota or Brandon or Tampa, Florida and let us help get you through it.

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