Can You Get a Car with Bad Credit and No Cosigner?

Get Car Financing
Even with poor credit.

By

Content Manager

David Topham is the Automotive Content Manager for Internet Brands. He works as the lead editor for CarsDirect and Auto Credit Express, and contributes to those sites alongside other Internet Brands' properties like The Car Connection. He was born and raised in Michigan and is a graduate of Michigan State University.


, Content Manager - December 22, 2017

A cosigner can help car buyers with bad credit get approved, but consumers can avoid needing someone else to sign their auto loan by improving their chances in other ways.

Getting a Car Loan with a Cosigner

A cosigner is somebody – usually a family member or friend – with good credit who signs a loan with a primary borrower, guaranteeing the lender will be paid. Legally, this means the cosigner has to make payments in the event the primary borrower can't. The loan and payments also appear on both the cosigner and primary borrower's credit reports.

By adding their good credit to the primary borrower's application, the cosigner increases the buyer’s chances of approval. It also increases the lender’s chances of getting paid back, making them more likely to approve the loan. In some situations, a cosigner can also help the primary borrower qualify for a lower interest rate.

However, some consumers aren't comfortable asking a friend or family member to put their credit and finances on the line. Others don't have anyone to cosign. These borrowers need to get approved without a cosigner by boosting their chances in other ways.

Tips on Getting a Car Loan with No Cosigner

These tips can help solo car buyers improve their chances of getting approved with a subprime lender:

  • Make a Down Payment and Cover Fees – Don't finance more than the car's selling price by covering all taxes and fees with cash or trade equity. Bad credit borrowers should also have a down payment ready to meet any requirement and to lower the amount financed.
  • Choose an Affordable Vehicle and a Short Term – Lenders see smaller loans as less risky, meaning poor credit car buyers should look for an affordable vehicle. Opting for a shorter loan term also helps, and lowers interest charges to boot.
  • Use In-House Financing – Most buy here pay here (BHPH) car lots don't check credit or use third-party lenders. However, be aware that some BHPH dealers don't report to the credit bureaus, so the loan won’t boost credit.
  • Connect with a Special Finance Dealership – Only certain dealerships work with subprime lenders. Bad credit borrowers need to connect with a special finance dealership signed up with one or more of them.

Find a Dealership That Can Help

CarsDirect can help buyers with bad credit and no cosigner who are seeking an auto loan. We work with a national network of dealerships that specialize in bad credit auto financing. Start the process by filling out our free and secure car loan request form today.

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, Content Manager

David Topham is the Automotive Content Manager for Internet Brands. He works as the lead editor for CarsDirect and Auto Credit Express, and contributes to those sites alongside other Internet Brands' properties like The Car Connection. He was born and raised in Michigan and is a graduate of Michigan State University.


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