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How do I find the best loan rate without it dropping my score of 688
I'm looking for a new car loan but when anyone checks your credit it lowers your score doesn't it? What score do car dealers use. Fico
Vantage or something else? Better financing through a bank or dealer?


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Nick R

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Although Auto Dealers are forbiden from obtaining credit reports without your approval, it is a fairly common practice among many car lots to do so.  You will have to show the salesperson your drivers licence before takeing a car for a drive and sometimes an unethical dealer will use the information to obtain a credit report.  To get the best rate, shop at your credit union first and get pre-approved.  Take a pre-approval letter to the dearlership and show the salesman.  Remind them that you are already approved and you expressly forbid them from obtaining a credit report. This creates a little more hassle but I know of no other way of avoiding it.

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Two things; 1) call each dealer or financer first and ask which they use, there is no definitive answer as each use whatever they choose. My credit union used Equifax for my new car; however my last car the dealership used Fico. It will more than likely be one of those two but there is no guarantee. Also you score is not the same when you run it as when they do. I asked who they used and was told equifax, I then ran my equifax score nad report before applying, and once I verfied it was where I wanted it, I applied and turned out their equifax score showed 20 points higher than the one I ran just a few days before (nothing changed on my credit during those 3 days).

2) When you are shopping for a car loan or a mortgage, as long as all inquiries are made within a certain period of time it is considered rate shopping, and even if you run your score 10 times, only 1 of those inquiries will actually hurt your score. I have heard several different time frames for "rate shopping;" I have seen 14 days, 30 days, and 45 days. I would recommend doing your research ahead of time and applying to all of them within 14 days to see who gives you the lowest interest rate. So I recommend go with the lower number of days to be on the safe side, complete all applications within 14 days of the 1st one.

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