powering smart financial decisions

Please keep in mind

Always compare different loans and options. Be careful not to over-apply as this could have a negative effect on your credit score. Think carefully too about whether you can afford the repayments on a car loan. If you don’t think you can keep up, you may want to reconsider. Use our car loan calculator to see what your repayments might be.

For more support managing your personal finances, check ASIC’s MoneySmart website, or contact the National Debt Helpline on 1800 007 007.

If you have a bad credit rating, you certainly aren’t alone. Many Australians have had credit difficulties at one time or another.

RateCity has compiled a list of competitive car loans that are better suited for those with a bad credit history. These lenders understand your situation and can sometimes offer you finance that suits your needs and budget with no credit check needed.

Can I get approved for a car loan with no credit check?

Some lenders in Australia offer car loans without checking your credit history. However, they may charge you higher fees and interest rates. They could also ask you to provide a large deposit to qualify for the loan. This is because you are seen as a ‘riskier’ borrower.

Getting a car loan from a lender that doesn’t consider your credit history may not be the best financial decision. Those with a history of struggling with debt or defaults may find themselves with car loan repayments at interest rates they cannot afford.

What is a credit check?

A credit check is a standard procedure undertaken by credit providers, such as banks, credit unions and other lenders, in which they analyse your credit history and score. In Australia, this is recorded with one or more agencies: Equifax, Illion and Experian. Tasmanians may be with the Tasmanian Collection Service.

Your credit report consists of:

  • Your personal details
  • A list of any credit or loans you have applied for
  • Any defaults
  • Your repayment history
  • Any bankruptcies or insolvencies you may have accrued (for up to five years from their occurrence)

Credit checks let potential lenders see how responsible you are with your finances. They need to make an informed decision about how risky you are to take on as a client. This lets them gauge whether they should lend you money and what interest rate they will charge.

My car loan application was rejected - what are my options?

Has a lender rejected your loan application due to poor credit? It's perfectly understandable that you're now looking for a no credit-check car loan.

In Australia, the National Consumer Credit Protection Act requires lenders to lend money responsibly. Credit checks are required by all responsible lenders. This doesn’t mean that you won’t be able to get a car loan. There are lenders who understand that bad credit situations happen, and that sometimes it's no fault of the individual.

Often, it's due to unexpected circumstances. You may have lost your job or have unforeseen bills to pay. You may need a car to get you to your job. It's worth exploring what could be available to you if your credit rating is poor.

How can I finance a car if I have bad credit?

If you need a car loan, have bad credit, and think you can make the repayments, there are several options available.

  1. Guarantor car loans. Some lenders will offer guarantor car loans where they will run a credit check on your guarantor and not you. There is less risk to the lender by having someone support your loan application.
  2. Bad credit lenders. You can also apply for a car loan with bad credit specialist lenders. They will check your credit report and their interest rates will likely be higher than if you have a good credit rating. But they may be lower than loans from lenders who boast no credit checks.
  3. Payday loans. Payday lenders offer smaller loans for short loan terms, for example,  $1,000 for up to a year. Poor credit may not be an issue with a payday loan. However, please keep in mind they have much higher interest rates and fees than traditional car loans.

Where can you get a no credit check car loan?

If your poor credit history limits your ability to get a car loan, you can consider borrowing from lenders who specialise in bad debt, or lending to individuals with bad credit ratings, such as the self-employed or first-time borrowers.

You could also consult a finance broker. Brokers generally don’t charge for their services, but receive a commission from lenders. They can recommend car loans from lenders with whom they have experience.

Can I get a car loan on a working visa?

Yes, you can. A typical car loan requirement is that you are a citizen or permanent resident of Australia. However, there are lenders who will approve loans for people on working visa holders.

These will be approved on a case-by-case basis, depending on your job and the length of your visa. For example, car loan terms are usually five to seven years. If you have a working visa, the lender will need to set the loan term around your time in Australia.

Can I get a car loan with bad credit?

Yes, you can get a car loan with bad credit, although you’ll probably find the process trickier and dearer than that experienced by people who have good credit histories.

You can find a number of lenders that specialise in bad credit car loans. However, make sure you compare bad credit car loans before you sign on the dotted line, because not all car loans are alike and having bad credit may mean you are more likely to be hit with higher fees and interest rates.

If you have bad credit, it’s important not to take out a car loan unless you can afford the repayments because a default could further damage your credit rating. Conversely, if you make all the repayments and repay the loan successfully, your credit rating might improve.

What is a bad credit car loan?

A bad credit car loan is a car loan for borrowers who have ‘bad credit’ or a bad credit history.

Some lenders refuse to offer bad credit car loans, because they believe there is an excessive risk that bad credit borrowers will not repay their loans. However, other lenders are willing to provide bad credit car loans.

Generally, these lenders charge higher interest rates for bad credit car loans than ‘prime’ car loans, reflecting the higher level of risk. Bad credit car loans may also have higher fees than prime car loans.

However, the big advantage of a bad credit car loan is that it allows borrowers with bad credit to access finance. Another advantage is that it could help bad credit borrowers improve their credit rating, assuming they make all their repayments on time.

Can I get a no credit check car loan?

Even if you have bad credit or no credit history there are loans that are available to you through specialised lenders. Some lenders in Australia advertise car loan offers without running credit checks, however, the Australian National Consumer Credit Protection act requires lenders to loan money responsibly, so credit checks are normally required by all responsible lenders. 

Can I get a no credit check car loan?

You may be able to get a no credit check car loan in certain circumstances, although it’s important to weigh up your options before doing so.

Most lenders refuse to provide no credit check car loans, because they don’t want to give loans to borrowers without first confirming that they have a track record of repaying debts. So any lenders that do provide no credit check car loans would take measures to protect themselves against the risk of default.

That’s why no credit check car loans have higher interest rates than other car loans. Also, borrowers often have to provide security and put down a larger deposit.

Do I need good credit to get a car loan?

You don’t need good credit to get a car loan, although the worse your credit history, the harder and more expensive it’s likely to be.

Some lenders will do business only with borrowers who have good credit. However, there are other lenders that are willing to offer car loans to borrowers who don’t have good credit. The catch, though, is that they may charge higher interest rates and fees, and also require more paperwork.

If you don’t have good credit and want a car loan immediately, you can search for lenders that work with bad credit borrowers. If you are able to wait, you can work to improve your credit score and then apply for a car loan once you have good credit.