Shopping for a used car and feeling good about your credit history? That’s great news. Your financial footprint has a big impact on your ability to secure a car loan and there are huge benefits associated with keeping it in good health. If you’ve been really conscientious you might even land yourself in the coveted “excellent” category. In this case, you may be wondering about used car finance rates with excellent credit.
Considered the holy grail of credit scores, an excellent credit score has the power to unlock a wider range of financial products and services. What’s more, it can also increase your borrowing limits and reduce your interest rates. Before we dive into what used car finance rates excellent credit can unlock for you, let’s take a moment to define credit scores and why they matter.
Understanding credit scores
A credit score is a points-based rating calculated using your financial history. It offers lenders an idea of what you’re like as a borrower, using data from credit cards, loans, direct debits and other money-based sources. The higher your score, the better deals and rates you’ll enjoy from lenders. Similarly, lower scores jeopardise your chances of securing credit and enjoying access to the best rates.
Experian, one of the largest and most trusted Credit Rating Agencies (CRAs) in the UK and our CRA of choice at My Car Credit, defines credit ratings as follows:
“A credit score, also known as a credit rating, is a number that reflects the likelihood of you paying credit back. Lenders like banks and credit card companies will look at your credit history when they calculate your credit score, which will show them the level of risk in lending to you. The higher your credit score, the better your chances of being accepted for credit, at the best rates.”
Calculating credit scores
Lenders rely on several CRAs to generate your score, including industry leaders Experian, TransUnion and Equifax. Each agency uses a different numerical scale to calculate individual ratings. While the numerical scale can vary, all scores will generally fall into one of five categories – excellent, good, fair, poor and very poor.
For example, TransUnion calculates credit scores out of 710. Scores between 628 – 710 are considered excellent, while scores between 604 – 627 are good and scores of 566 – 603 are fair. Experian scores range from between 0 – 999, with scores of between 721 – 880 classified as fair and 961 – 999 considered excellent.
What’s an average credit score?
Drawing on data from more than 900,000 users, MoneySuperMarket estimates the average Brit has a credit score of 569 using the TransUnion scale. The south of England has the best track record, with Kingston upon Thames topping the leader board with an average of 586. Guilford, Redding, Redhill and Harrogate were all close behind.
What is an excellent credit score?
To be considered an “excellent” borrower, you’ll need to have an Experian score of between 961 and 999. This is the number that will help you secure access to the best car loans in the UK.
The perks of “excellent” credit
Find yourself in the highly sought after “excellent” category? Congratulations! You’ll be open to a range of benefits of excellent credit, including used car finance rates.
Say you’re looking to purchase a used car for £10,000. With an excellent credit score you’d increase your chances of securing such a large loan significantly. Your excellent credit would also unlock you the best interest rates, with typical Annual Percentage Rates (APRs) of around 6.9%. Over the course of a five-year loan, you would pay a total of £11,800, or £1,800 in interest.
For the same loan, a borrower with a “fair” credit rating would be given a higher interest rate to reflect the increased risk for the lender. The same £10,000 loan would be subject to an APR of 13.9% which would translate to a total payable amount of £13,685.20 over 10 years. The difference in interest paid is more than £1,885, meaning an excellent score saves you a sizeable amount of cash.
Improving your credit score
Not quite an “excellent” borrower? It’s important to understand that once your credit card rating is established it isn’t set in stone. Instead, credit ratings are dynamic and constantly evolving. They can increase or decrease over time depending on your financial behaviour, which means it’s important to stay on top of your credit and establish good financial habits.
The shifting nature of credit ratings is also a great opportunity to improve your score. If yours is less than ideal and you’re hoping to boost your eligibility, there are a few effective steps you can take. In no time you could secure the same used car finance rates excellent credit borrowers enjoy.
· Register to vote
Joining the electoral register can be an easy and effective way to boost your credit rating. It’s as easy as registering to vote via the gov.uk website and takes a matter of minutes.
· Set up direct debits
Forgetting to pay off your credit card or phone bill can have a negative impact on your credit score. Keep yours clean by setting up direct debits and eliminating the monthly task of manually transferring money between accounts.
· Reduce your credit card debt
Just because you have a £5,000 credit card limit it doesn’t mean your account should be maxed out. Generally, we’d advise using no more than 25% of your limit. The upside is that this shows lenders you’re a responsible borrower who won’t get out of their depth.
· Cull your cards
While it can be tempting to sign up for multiple credit cards this behaviour can compromise your credit score in the long run. This is because it can suggest you’re a serial borrower. As well as snipping your card in half you’ll also need to get in touch with your bank and close the account officially. While this may trigger a slight drop in your credit score initially, it should start to climb again soon.
Excellent credit rates for used car finance
Want to know more about how to make the most of your excellent credit score? At My Car Credit we specialise in helping top-tier borrowers secure the best used car finance rates excellent credit can unlock.
Don’t quite hit the mark? We’re also experts in securing loans for borrowers with good, fair, poor and very poor credit ratings do don’t be shy about reaching out if your score is less than ideal. Best of all, our car finance eligibility checker doesn’t affect your credit score.
Rates from 6.9% APR. Representative APR 14.9%
Evolution Funding Ltd T/A My Car Credit
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!