When you lease a car, your vehicle broker or your dealer will have to carry out a credit check. But, what if you don’t have a great credit score? Is there any way you can lease a car without a credit check?
The short answer is no, not really. But, it’s not all terrible. At OSV, we talk to people who have bad credit ratings every day, so we’re going to talk you through exactly what a credit check involves, and whether it’s really that important.
Why Do I Need to Have a Credit Check To Lease a Car?
Credit checks are important for the leasing company because it gives them peace of mind. They need to be sure that you will pay them back, and to do that they need to check that you’ve made other payments on time.
Many mainstream lenders will also look beyond your credit score. They will look at things such as how well your account is kept, and if you’re in arrears. They will also want to know;
- If you have been involved in credit fraud
- If you move around a lot
- If you are registered at more than one address
And all these factors will also determine whether you are eligible to lease a car.
What Affects Credit Score?
Let’s look at the things that affect your credit score. There are lots of things that can have both a positive and negative impact on your credit score, such as;
- Being on the electoral roll
- Utility bill payments
- If you have a mortgage
- Paying things off on time
- How long you have lived at your current residence
- How many purchases you have made on your credit card in the past six months.
All of these things can have an impact on your credit score, and can flag up when you have a credit check.
Where Can I Check My Credit Score?
There are a few websites where you can check your credit rating. We recommend using;
Please note that these websites will offer 30 days free. After that, they will charge you a fee, but you can cancel it at any time.
What Does a Credit Check Include?
A credit check is when someone will check your credit score. Your credit score is based on something called a credit report. Your credit score can be as high as 1,000 or as low as 1. The higher the number, the better your credit score.
Your credit report will include;
- Any addresses you have lived at
- Any addresses your name is linked to
- Public notices, including bankruptcies
- Name history, such as aliases
- Credit limits and balances
- Payment history, including any late payments you may have made
So, all those things will contribute to your credit score. This will then be checked by a finance house before you lease a car.
Can I Lease a Car If I Have Bad Credit?
If you’ve got bad credit and you’re reading this article, then it might seem like your dream car is driving away at lightning speed. However, that’s not necessarily the case. There are circumstances in which people with bad credit have still been able to lease a car.
A lot of funders use an automated checking process when it comes to approving finance. However, if someone has been declined, then a human will look at their credit report. They will also look at other factors, such as;
- Where you live
- Your income
- Your expenditure
- Is a guarantor available?
So, decisions are not just based on credit score. Defaults stay on your credit report for six years, so if you’re six months away from them dropping off then there is a chance that you will still be able to get finance.
Do I Have To Go Through a Broker If I Have Bad Credit?
If you want to lease a car with bad credit then a broker is your best bet.
This is because there are some brokers that will have access to specialist funders that work specifically with people with bad credit. However, it’s vitally important that you are honest with your broker about your credit score at the start. That way they are able to make the process as painless as possible.
We have a whole article on leasing with bad credit. This contains everything you need to know about leasing a car when you have a bad credit rating and can be found here.
Will Credit Checks Affect My Credit Score?
Generally, one or two credit checks will not affect your credit score. However, more than that and it could have a negative impact on it.
This is why it’s important you tell your broker that you have bad credit at the very beginning. Otherwise, you could end up worsening your credit score with pointless credit checks.
Will Leasing A Car Affect My Credit Score?
Yes, it will, but it doesn’t have to be a bad thing. 35% of your credit score is based on your payment history. So, it can have a significant impact on your credit score.
But, if you make all your payments on time, which I’m sure you would, then your credit score will improve. The fact that it is a lease scheme won’t affect your credit score at all.
We’ve answered that question very briefly, but you can find out more about how leasing affects your credit score here.
So, Can I Lease a Car Without a Credit Check?
No, not really. Sorry.
A credit check is often the best way to determine whether or not you will be able to make the payments. Without a credit check, a leasing company or lender won’t really know enough about you to determine whether you’re worth the risk of them leasing you a car.
Lending money is a risky business, and whenever anyone lends money to someone else, they want to learn a few things about them first before getting involved with them.
While a credit check is required, there is still a chance that you can lease a car. The most important thing to do in this situation is to be completely honest, right from the start. Because leasing can be complicated, particularly when it comes to credit checks we recommend speaking to a broker before making any decisions.
Andrew has been in the motor trade for over 20 years. What he enjoys most about his job is the team spirit and the dedication of his work colleagues. He also appreciates the teams input in the improvement of the company.
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