back to articles | February 03, 2023 | Moses Mwangi

Categories: Types of Car Loans

How to Get a Private Party Auto Loan with Bad Credit

How can you purchase a car from a private seller if you have bad credit? Individuals with low credit scores often have limited options regarding the type of auto loans they can access. However, you don't have to worry if you have a low credit score.


How can you purchase a car from a private seller if you have bad credit? Individuals with low credit scores often have limited options regarding the type of auto loans they can access. However, you don't have to worry if you have a low credit score.

There are several online lenders who will provide you with a private-party auto loan even if you have bad credit. Here is a comprehensive guide on how to get a private-party auto loan with a low credit score.

The ultimate guide to getting a private party auto loan with bad credit

One essential thing to note if you have bad credit is that qualifying for an auto loan may be challenging. You may need to evaluate your present financial situation, be patient, and assess the vehicles and loans you can afford. Furthermore, you have a significant opportunity to improve your credit score. Below are simple steps you can use to get the private party auto loan despite your poor credit status:

1. Find ways to improve your credit profile

A vital aspect of your credit profile lies in your credit score. What is a credit score? A credit score is a number that will determine your creditworthiness. Your history with credit will often establish your credit score. In addition, most lenders will check your score to assess your chance of repaying a specific loan on time.

If you have bad credit, there is a great chance that private-party auto lenders will charge you a high-interest rate. Also, you may have access to more expensive loan terms than an individual with good credit.

The expensive loan is due to the risks associated with lending to people with poor credit. Credit scores typically range from 300 to 850. However, if you have a score of between 300 and 579, based on the FICO score, you have bad credit.

In such a situation, your only option is to find ways to improve your overall credit profile. First, make sure to get a credit report from, then check ways to fix any errors in your credit profile. Also, make sure to pay all other bills on time.

One of the most critical factors in a credit score is the repayment history. It consists of 35% of your overall score. Thus, paying your bills on time will help to improve your credit profile. Improving the information lenders will help you stand a high chance of getting a private-party auto loan.

2. Demonstrate your ability to pay for the private-party auto loan

Apart from your credit score, lenders will also check your ability to make timely payments. They will need to know whether you will default or not. Thus, proving that you can pay for the loan despite poor credit should be among your top priorities.

One thing that most lenders will check in your history is whether there are cases of repossessions. If there are, you stand a minimal chance of receiving the loan. However, lenders may consider you a good candidate for a loan if you had a previous auto loan and made timely payments.

If you want a private party auto loan, you will need to show the lending institution your worthiness. Demonstrating your ability to pay the auto loan will increase the chances of loan approval. Also, it will help you get better loan terms.

To demonstrate your ability to make loan payments despite a bad credit score, you will need to:

  • Prove you have at least one stable source of income, such as employment. Employment can act as an essential factor in risk assessment.
  • Have proof of additional sources of income such as disability payments, social security benefits, or child support.
  • Provide a statement of total debt and total income to determine how much you can afford to pay.

3. Consider making a down payment

Most private-party auto loan lenders will assess the probability of loss if you default. The key is to borrow less to ensure a loan approval, as lenders will have a low chance of loss.

You can borrow less by making a down payment. Most lenders will view the down payment on the vehicle as a sign of your seriousness. The down payment will help to reduce the following:

  • The amount of private-party auto loan you desire to borrow
  • Upfront fees and taxes
  • The interest rate of the loan
  • The private party auto loan’s length
  • Your monthly payments

Consider a co-borrower or a co-signer

Having a co-signer for the private party auto loan may increase your chances of loan approval. The co-signer is often an individual who has a high credit score. In most cases, the individual agrees to make payments on the loan on your behalf if you default.

A co-signer can come in handy for those with bad credit, as lenders will trust you more. One thing to note about the co-signer is that they will not own the vehicle. However, they risk their credit score if they default on payments.

Having a co-borrower can also increase your chances of loan approval. A co-borrower is someone with whom you will borrow the private party auto loan. They will share ownership of the car and be responsible for making a portion of the payments.

Ways to shop for private party auto loans if you have bad credit

Having bad credit does not mean you have limited choices in getting a private-party auto loan. In the market, you will find that several lending institutions can offer you the chance.

A private-party auto loan will use the vehicle from the private market as collateral. It means that despite your bad credit, you still stand to get an auto loan, as lenders can repossess the vehicle if you default. Below are a few ways you can shop for a private-party auto loan:

Visit your bank

If you have an existing relationship with a credit union or bank, make sure to use it. The lending institutions may provide loyal customers with cheaper private-party auto loans. From the bank, you can get pre-approval. The pre-approval will help determine how much you can afford to borrow.

Consider subprime lenders

Consider subprime lenders if your bank cannot provide you with the much needed auto loan. Subprime lenders will help you facilitate indirect borrowing. They consist of individuals who work with people who have bad credit.

The subprime lenders will look into your residence, employment, and income stability to ensure you can afford the loan. They will give you the loan if they prove you a viable borrower option.

Shop online

One primary benefit of online private-party auto loan networks is the minimal requirements for eligibility. Furthermore, several nonbank online lenders, credit unions, and traditional banks online exist. It means that you have several options. Thus, ensure you research the best lender that provides private party loans at affordable rates.

Bottom Line

Having bad credit does not exclude you from receiving a private-party auto loan. However, you may need to pay a higher interest rate than someone with good credit. The trick lies in researching the best lender and the most appropriate loan terms.