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Living with bad credit is something many Texans understand. Defaulted student loan debt, past-due credit card bills, no available credit, and many other issues cause numerous Texas residents to live with bad credit. Even those who never make a payment late or miss a payment might live with poor credit, and it’s because they’re in over their heads. When it’s time to find a new car, bad credit makes life difficult. Before you go applying for car loans with various lenders or dealers, it’s imperative you know what you’re working with in terms of your bad credit. There are several options available, but knowing where you fall on the bad credit spectrum can help you determine your next step.

If your credit is on the higher end of bad, you’ll have more options than you will if it’s on the low end of bad. A “higher” bad credit score means you have a chance to apply for bad credit loans with dealers, lenders, and even your own bank. This doesn’t guarantee you’ll get the loan, but adding a sizable down payment to the equation can help increase your chances of actually getting the loan you want. Most dealerships have a lender that works with bad credit buyers. If you have bad credit, seek a dealership of this nature. You’ll need a down payment, you won’t be able to choose any car you want, and you’ll be limited. You will, however, be able to purchase a new car.

If you have a credit union or bank you work with often, ask them to help you. These are lenders who tend to work more with their clients instead of a credit score. They’ll pull your credit, of course. They simply look past the number and consider the reason behind it on top of the score. Following the crash of the economy in 2008, many credit unions began to ask their customers what brought down their score. They look at your report and as long as they see on-time payments, no excessive debt, and a good income for the past few years, they’re going to consider you. Bad credit items stay on a credit report for 7 years before they fall off and allow your score to improve. If you defaulted on a student loan 5 years ago but since consolidated and put yourself in a more favorable financial position, you’re going to increase your chance of receiving a loan.

If you have bad credit on the low end of the bad credit spectrum, your chance of receiving a bad credit loan is minimal. Your best option is to find a buy here pay here dealer and work with them. It’s expensive, your car choices are poor, and your credit score won’t change, but it’s often your only solution when your score is this low. You do have options, you merely need to know where to find them and how to obtain them.

Dealership Requirements in Texas

Before you choose a dealership to shop with in Texas, get to know the rules and requirements associated with selling vehicles in this state. Since you have bad credit, you might be working with a smaller dealer without a big name backing it. You should know you want to choose a dealer with all their licenses and certifications easily available for you to find. They should be displayed on the wall or shown to you when you ask to see them. All the salespeople in the dealer should have their own salesperson license to show. The dealer must have a certified mechanic on hand to inspect all the new cars that come onto the lot. These cars could have issues, and the mechanic’s job is to note them, fix them, and put good cars on the lot.

It’s your lawful right to ask for a car history report or Carfax report. All dealers are required by law to provide one to you free of charge before you sign on the dotted line when shopping for a new vehicle. You have every right to know the car’s ownership history, work history, and other history. It’s the only way to ensure you’re purchasing a quality vehicle.

Driving in Texas

Houston, San Antonio, Dallas, Austin, and Fort Worth are some of the biggest cities in Texas, and each one of them comes with its own driving challenges. It’s congested, busy, and the commutes are often long and frustrating. However, driving in the country is a new story. It’s big, open, and the posted speed limits often rival that of the interstate. It makes for nice driving when you’re in Texas. It can be very rainy, there is always a chance of a hurricane or tropical storm along the Gulf Coast areas, and wind can be a factor when driving.

If you’re going to drive in Texas, you should familiarize yourself with the laws of the road. You should also have insurance, but it’s going to cost you more if you live in one of the larger cities that pose a greater risk of an accident. One law you should be aware of is you cannot sell your eyeballs in Texas, so driving to a location to do so would be considered illegal. In addition, it’s not only illegal to drink and drive, it’s also illegal to take more than three sips of your beer at one time. These are laws to keep in mind while driving through the great state of Texas.

You might not have the best credit history, but it’s not too late to change that. By making your payments on time, chipping away at your debt to pay it off, and avoiding any new credit accounts when you can, you can help increase your credit score faster than you think. You can also get a bad credit loan for a new automobile, but you won’t be able to get it as easily as you would any other loan with better credit.