Auto Credit Express auto loans review: Access to lenders who specialize in ‘bad credit’

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In a Nutshell

Auto Credit Express may be able to connect you with auto dealers or “bad credit” lenders who specialize in lending to people whose credit needs work. Since Auto Credit Express isn’t a direct lender, you won’t know what interest rate or loan terms you might qualify for until you’re paired with a lender.

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Pros

Cons

Willing to work with people with lower credit scores

Loan rates and terms vary depending on the lender

May have low down payment requirements

You must work with a dealer in the Auto Credit Express dealership network

Minimal qualification requirements

You may end up with a high interest rate


What you need to know about Auto Credit Express auto loans

Auto Credit Express doesn’t offer auto loans directly. Instead, it connects you with dealers and lenders across the country who might be able to give you a car loan. Here are some important things to know about Auto Credit Express auto loans.

You’ll have a range of loan options

Through its dealership and lender network, Auto Credit Express offers financing for …

  • New-car purchases
  • Used-car purchases
  • Car loan refinancing

You might have better odds of approval

Though Auto Credit Express works with more than 1,100 dealers, it’s impossible to say for sure whether you’ll qualify for an auto loan. Each lender’s minimum requirements for car loans will vary.

But the company lists two key requirements: You must be at least 18 years old and have a monthly income of at least $1,500. A full-time job or some other form of fixed income can also help increase your odds for approval.

The company doesn’t specify a minimum credit score requirement, and some dealers in its network are willing to work with people who have declared bankruptcy or had a car repossessed in the past. So don’t forget that even if you think you have bad credit, you may still have options with Auto Credit Express.

You don’t need to put a lot down

Through Auto Credit Express, you may be able to get a loan with a lender who requires little or nothing for a down payment on a car loan.

But remember that the more money you put down on a car, the less you have to borrow. And a lower loan amount could mean lower monthly payments and less total interest paid. If you can put more down, it’s likely well worth it.

Your dealership options will be limited

With a loan through the Auto Credit Express network, you’ll be limited to buying a car through a participating dealership.

That may not be a bad thing, especially if you don’t know dealers or lenders that work with people with credit problems. By going through Auto Credit Express, you can be paired with a dealer or lender that may approve you based on the information you provide. In other words, Auto Credit Express does some shopping around for you.

But before you sign any loan paperwork, be sure you understand the loan terms. Some dealerships within the Auto Credit Express network offer in-house financing. Some of these lenders may offer “buy-here, pay-here” financing that often comes with sky-high interest rates.

A closer look at Auto Credit Express auto loans

If you’re considering applying for a loan from an Auto Credit Express partner, here are some other details to know.

  • Auto Credit Express won’t do a hard credit inquiry when you submit your initial prequalification application — but their partner dealerships may run a hard or soft inquiry before sharing loan options with you.
  • Co-signers are allowed.
  • You can trade in your current vehicle and use its value as a down payment.

Is an Auto Credit Express auto loan the right fit for you?

A loan through an Auto Credit Express partner may be ideal if you can’t qualify for an auto loan elsewhere because of bad credit or previous financial problems, like bankruptcy.

By connecting you with a dealership or lender, Auto Credit Express can help you avoid applying with multiple auto lenders. Shopping within a specific timeframe (typically from 14 to 45 days) may only count as a single inquiry, depending on the credit scoring model used — but it can be time-consuming.

If your credit is considered “good” or even “excellent,” you may be better off working directly with a lender, like a bank, credit union or online lender. In this case, you may be able to land more favorable terms, like a better interest rate.

How to apply for a loan through Auto Credit Express

You can complete the loan request form online or over the phone by calling 1-866-902-4403.

Once you apply, you could find out if you’re qualified within 24 hours. Auto Credit Express can match you with a new or used car dealer or lender in your area, based on the information you provide. If there’s a match, you’ll receive a call from a dealership in your area to pick a car, provide the necessary documents and finish the process.

Before you apply for an auto loan through Auto Credit Express, it’s a good idea to check your credit and compare other loan offers. Understanding your credit can help set expectations – in general, lower credit scores will result in higher interest rates. And shopping around can help you find the best loan rate and terms for your needs. Read our article on how to get a car loan with bad credit to learn more about the process.

Auto loan alternatives to consider

Auto Credit Express can do a lot of the work in helping you find a lender and a dealership that wants to work with you. If you aren’t sure whether a loan through Auto Credit Express is right for you, here are a couple of alternatives to consider.

  • Capital One auto loan: Capital One could be a good fit for someone who wants to get an idea of estimated rates right away.
  • RoadLoans auto loan: RoadLoans might be ideal for someone who wants more dealership options.