Now that a new year has begun, it’s time to make good on all those resolutions. Kick this year off right by resolving to build better credit for yourself, so you can get the vehicle, and financing, you need to help this be your best year yet.

Check Your Credit

Happy New YearYou can’t build better credit without knowing where you stand now. We recommend that you check your credit throughout the year to catch any mistakes that might come up. You can do this by requesting a credit report from one bureau every four months by visiting This will give you access to your report from each of the three major credit bureaus – TransUnion, Experian, and Equifax. You can get one free report from each bureau every 12 months.

Do Your Research

Once you know what your credit looks like, you’ll be able to research things like what kind of interest rates you might qualify for. Interest rates are typically based on your credit score. The better your credit, the lower your interest rate (but it will vary by lender). You can use online tools to help get an idea of what kind of rates you might face, what your down payment amount should be, and what your debt to income and payment to income ratios look like. All these things will help you prepare a budget for a vehicle.

It’s also good to research the types of vehicles that fit your needs. When shopping for a vehicle, make a list of your “must haves” and “definitely nots,” then make sure to stick to your lists. Keep in mind that vehicle selection may be limited if you’re struggling with credit issues.

Go to the Right Dealership

Chances are, if you have bad credit, you’ll need to get a subprime loan. Subprime loans typically come with more requirements and carry a higher interest rate. Unlike a direct loan, subprime loans are only available through dealers. Not all dealerships, however, work with subprime lenders – which is why it’s important to find a special finance dealer that can work with your particular credit situation.

If you don’t know where to turn for a dealer that can work with you, Auto Credit Express wants to help you start off on the right path. We are partnered with dealers across the country that work with a wide range of credit challenges. Don’t delay – start off the new year by taking steps toward your next vehicle! Simply fill out our auto loan request form to be matched with a dealer near you.