Cheap car finance is probably the most important part of the entire buying process. Unless you’ve got piles of cash secretly stacked away on some remote off-shore tax haven, after all, getting a car will always involve taking up a loan. And this, as you may well know from painful personal experience, can be exceedingly hard.
For many potential buyers, the credit check is the worst part of the procedure. In reality, it fulfils an important function: To protect both sides against car loans that the borrower is not able to pay. The goal is therefore not to find a lender willing to skip the credit check. But to turn bad credit into good credit and arrive at a realistic payment plan.
All of these considerations are vital to our own strategy towards financing options and car loan rates.
Cheap Car Finance at CCC
Cheap car finance is an important part of our approach. But it is not the only focus we have!
Our main goal at Concept Car Credit is to provide anyone with an affordable auto loan. Even if you have a bad credit rating or a low credit score, we will always do everything in our power to help you find the car financing you need.
We also want to you to drive home not just in a cheap car, but one you’ll actually treasure. Buying a car at our Manchester dealership doesn’t feel any different from buying a car at a ‘regular’ car dealership – even for those with bad credit.
So why is it that used car deals and car financing are such a big problem for many households?
Car Finance: A Source for Trouble
The reason why cheap car finance is so hard to come by is closely related to the state of the overall financial markets. With interest rates low and the economy still refusing to grow significantly, banks are essentially considering every investment a risk. Compared to houses, whose value typically rises over time, cars are seriously losing in resale value very quickly. This means that rates tend to be high to reflect the underlying risk. And yet cheap car finance is not entirely impossible.
Cheap Car Finance: Is it safe?
You’ll only have to open your local newspaper to find dozens of ads offering you favourable deals, fantastic cars and cheap car finance. The real problem, therefore, is not finding cheap car finance at all. The real problem is finding cheap car finance that’s not out to rip you off.
Still today, many customers regularly complain to consumer watchdogs about shady deals and problems with their car which their dealer did not alert them to. Financial deals also frequently come bundled into mixed packages with various ad-ons, which are expensive and, more often than not, unnecessary.
It has to be said, though, that a lot has happened over the past ten years towards making second hand car deals safer. Yes, you will still need to take some basic aspects into consideration. But if you do, you stand a very good chance of finding not only an excellent car, but also cheap car finance with reasonable conditions.
What About Buy Here Pay Here?
One of the fastest growing segments in the car loan industry is Buy Here Pay Here.
How does it work?
Very simply, Buy Here Pay Here means that the car dealership which sells the vehicles also takes care of the financing. This sounds like trouble on paper. And indeed, many articles condemn the negative aspects of the practise.
However, what is mostly omitted from these accounts is that Buy Here Pay Here is highly regulated. The rules imposed on a dealership mean that these car loans are among the safest in the safest in the industry.
Buy Here Pay Here can or can not work out for you. There is certainly no reason to condemn it outright.
That said, there is a financing model we need to warn you against …
… and in this case, that’s PCP. Personal contract plans are among the financing options that are turning the world of car financing upside down. They are similar to leasing in many respects: You pay for a car with low monthly payments and almost no deposit over a (typically) three year period. At the end, you can buy the car outright with a final balloon payment. Alternatively, you can switch to a new car and a new contract.
PCPs seem very attractive. They usually don’t require a strict credit check and are thus available for those with bad credit. They also allow you to drive factory new vehicles rather having to select a second hand car.
The downside is that PCPs lock you inside a system which can quickly turn against you. As soon as you want to leave the agreement, you will eventually have to pay the balloon payment. And then, a personal contract plan is no longer cheap car finance.
As the Guardian puts it:
“More than 80% of PCP buyers roll over their contracts to a lease on a new car. (…) [A dealer] compared the system to changing mobile phones. He said: “You have the ability to change after three years. You know, like you do with your mobile phone.” The changes could mean risks for buyers, as they adapt to a new and more complex system for purchasing vehicles.”
Improving your Finances
Regardless whether you’re looking for the cheapest new cars or planning to buy second hand: Applying for money is never a pleasant process. You can, however, make life a lot easier on yourself by improving your finances.
As we’ve mentioned on the blog several times before, getting your credit rating in order is not as hard as it seems. By using a credit card and paying everything you buy in time, you can take giant steps towards a better credit score. And the better your credit score, the better your auto loan, the lower the car loan rates and thus the lower the car payments.
Finding cheap car finance
So what are the terms for finding suitable cheap car finance? A few of the most important points are as follows:
- Calculate exactly how much money you’re paying as part of a deal. Don’t be fooled by monthly payments, it’s the overall sum of your rates that really matters. As you’ll be surprised to learn, what looks to be cheap car finance at first sight very often turns out to be extremely expensive in the end.
- If you can, try and improve your credit rating before applying for a loan. It is by far the most important indication of your financial health for most banks and car dealers and the better it is, the better your chances of getting cheap car finance.
- If you can, try to avoid banks. For one, their deals are rarely particularly attractive, even if you’re a long-time customer. Secondly, dealers specialise in cars and are therefore in a better position of providing you with a tailor-made offer.
- Compare as many different dealers as you can. The pre-purchase conversation with a potential dealer is essential. Cheap car finance is a lot about trust. And sometimes, a slightly more expensive loan with a dealer you can really rely on can be your best option.
If you’re interested in professional, yet cheap car finance, we’d love to talk to you. Do drop by our showroom to discover our expansive selection of used cars and talk to us about a loan. We’re always there to help.