Although there are ways of securing car finance with a poor credit rating, when considering your car finance eligibility, a good indication of your viability as a candidate is the health of your credit score. Don’t panic if yours is less than ideal, though, as there are steps you can take to improve it.

Don’t forget that you can get a free credit score with Experian. Use this to gauge where your credit rating is and improve it if it’s on the lower side – bear in mind that different credit rating agencies (CRAs) use different numerical scales to adjudicate your credit score.

Improving your credit score for car financing

These are a few of the best ways to improve your credit score if you’re trying to secure car finance. A better credit score will mean you are a more favourable candidate for a finance agreement, and may result in lower interest rates overall, so it’s worth improving your overall rating if you can.

Double check your report

Some of the best ways to improve your credit report are the easiest. Double checking your credit report for any small mistakes – like a mistyped name or wrong address – is one of the best ways of improving your overall score.

If you do notice a mistake, contact your provider and ask them to amend it.

Register to vote

Exercising your right to vote is essential in many ways, not least because registering on the electoral roll at your place of residence is an easy way of improving your credit score.

Even if you live with your parents or are in shared accommodation, this is a critical step you can take towards improving your rating.

Pay your bills in a timely fashion

Hitting your regular payments on time and in full is a sure-fire way of improving your credit score. In fact, your payment history is arguably the most important factor that impacts your overall rating. Late payments or those not made in full will impact this history, and in turn effect your score.

Even making the smallest payments on time – for example, repaying your monthly phone bill – adds up, so stay on top of these as far as possible.

Lower your credit utilisation ratio

Your credit utilisation – typically expressed as a ratio – indicates the percentage of total available credit that a borrower is currently making use of. After your payment history, it’s the second most important factor in determining your credit score.

A low credit utilisation indicates that you’re only using a small percentage of any credit available to you. As such, you’re a less risky candidate for a loan. The higher your credit utilisation ratio, the riskier you are, and you might face higher interest rates as a result.

As such, if you’re looking to improve your credit score for car financing, you should aim to avoid taking on any new debt right before applying, as existing credit card debt will increase your credit utilisation ratio. It’s good practice to avoid maxing out your credit cards every month generally, but particularly important if you’re applying for a finance agreement.

Avoid frequent hard credit checks

When you apply for a loan or credit, you’ll face a hard credit check at some point. This will lower your credit score. Although this bump is only temporary, lasting a few months or so, if you have a number of these hard credit inquiries registering on your report in a short period of time, you’ll be a riskier borrower.

By submitting multiple applications for the same kind of loan or finance agreement within a certain period of time, you can avoid having multiple hard enquiries register on your report, as these will all be considered one hard inquiry. For example, FICO will group applications for a similar kind of loan if they are made within a 45-day period.

Practice good security habits

Unfortunately, identity theft is a threat of modern life, and if someone is pretending to be you and taking out credit in your name, this could negatively impact your credit rating.

Being savvy with your security helps to avoid this – don’t repeat passwords, and check your bank account frequently for fraudulent activity.

Find car finance today

My Car Credit can help individuals from all walks of life to secure affordable, accessible finance – and our initial credit check is only ever soft. Find out how we can work with you no matter your credit score by emailing enquiries@mycarcredit.co.uk.

Rates from 9.9% APR. Representative APR 12.4%

Evolution Funding Ltd T/A My Car Credit

My Credit Rating

Excellent

  • You are a home owner
  • You have been on the electoral role for a long period of time
  • You have current credit arrangements and mortgage with no defaults
  • You have no CCJs, credit arrears or missed payments
  • You rarely apply for credit
  • You are employed or self-employed

Good

  • You are on the electoral role
  • You are a home owner or long standing tenant
  • You have a stable employment history
  • You have current credit arrangements with occasional missed payments
  • You have no CCJs

Fair

  • You are or have recently been on the electoral role
  • You may have recently changed address
  • You may have occasional missed payments
  • You may have an old CCJ
  • You may have regularly applied for credit

Poor

  • You may have had frequent changes in address
  • You may not be traceable on the voters roll
  • You may have exceeded credit card limits
  • You may have missed payments on current agreements
  • You may have had a CCJ in the past

Bad

  • You may not be traceable on the voters roll
  • Your credit cards are over their limits
  • You have recent CCJs
  • You may have been refused credit elsewhere
  • You may be in a debt management plan
£

X monthly repayments of
£X

Typical rate

Loan amount

Total payable

X% APR*

£X

£X

*for illustration purposes only

No impact on your credit score*

Representative Example

Borrowing £7,500 at a representative APR of 12.4%, annual interest rate (fixed) 12.36%, 47 monthly payments of £196.44 followed by 1 payment of £206.44 (incl. estimated £10 option to purchase fee), a deposit of £0.00, total cost of credit is £1,939.12, total amount payable is £9,439.12.

Evolution Funding Limited, trading as My Car Credit, is a credit broker and not a lender.

Please ensure you can afford the repayments for the duration of the loan before entering into a credit agreement.

*Initial application is a soft search. Should you progress, some lenders may perform a hard search on your credit file.

Require more help?

Got a question you can’t find the answer to, or need some advice and guidance around taking out car finance? Our Car Credit Specialists are friendly, experienced, and here to help so get in touch today!