Fair credit is typically classified as a credit score in the 580 to 669 score range. It's a score that's just below the national average, but it's far from the lowest. Fair credit may make it more difficult to get approved for a car loan with a traditional lender, but there's always special financing, and we can help guide your way!

Knowing Your Credit Score

Fair Credit: What It Means and How It Impacts Your Car LoanThe FICO score is the most commonly used credit score among auto lenders. It's important that you know where your FICO credit score stands and what's on your credit reports before you visit a dealership.

In order to get your credit reports, you can visit www.annualcreditreport.com to request a complimentary copy of your reports from each of the three national credit bureaus: TransUnion, Equifax, and Experian. You're able to do this once every 12 months.

You may be able to get access to your FICO credit score through your bank, credit union, or credit card provider. If you're not currently monitoring your credit scores, there are many online sources you can use, and you can start right here with our trusted partner.

Once you have your credit score and reports, you can see which scoring range your credit falls into. FICO credit scores range from 300 to 850 – the higher your score, the better off you are when you're applying for credit.

According to myFICO.com, the FICO credit scoring ranges are:

  • Exceptional: 800 to 850 credit score – Lenders consider people in this range to be low risk for lending. If this is you, you typically have no problem getting approved for credit.
  • Very good: 740 to 799 credit score – People with credit in this range are also seen as low risk. In this range, you're likely to be approved with lower interest rates.
  • Good: 670 to 739 credit score – These scores classify you as a medium risk. You likely won't be able to qualify for the best interest rates, but getting approved shouldn't be an issue.
  • Fair: 580 to 669 credit score – This scoring range is seen as a medium-high risk. People in this tier are likely to pay higher interest rates.
  • Poor: 300 to 579 credit score – Lenders view this tier as high risk. Borrowers are likely to have trouble getting approved for financing, and may need to provide larger down payments and/or have a co-applicant when applying for loans.

Fair Credit and Special Financing

When your credit score falls into the fair range, you're just below the national average for credit scores as the average credit score in America currently stands at 695, according to ValuePenguin.

If you’re within this range, you might need to apply for a car loan with a subprime lender. These lenders are equipped to handle financing for people that have credit issues and are more likely to offer you an approval for an auto loan.

These lenders work exclusively through special finance dealers, and you can't sit down with them face to face. Instead, the finance manager at the dealership acts as the go-between by providing the lender with your application and supporting documents.

If the lender approves you, the dealer presents you with a list of vehicles you qualify for on their lot. You can test drive them, choose one, and complete the loan process.

Finding a Special Finance Dealership

If you've ever driven around town looking for the right car, or the right lender, you know that dealerships don't always advertise the fact that they work with people who have fair credit. This is where Auto Credit Express can help.

We work with a nationwide network of special finance dealers that have the subprime lenders you need. Don't drive around in circles looking for a dealership that can help – save time and money by having a destination in mind!

Simply fill out our easy and hassle-free auto loan request form, and we'll begin the process of matching you to a local dealer. There's never any cost or obligation to buy, so what are you waiting for? Get started right now!