Actionable Tips to Increase Your Chances of Getting Approved

So, you have to have a car but your credit is less than perfect? As you may have found out by now, financing at a reasonable interest rate is hard to find. And if this is the case for you, leasing a car might be the way to go. Here's why:

  1. Lower monthly payments compared to buying - to see a breakdown of monthly payments when leasing vs financing, check out Leasing or Buying a BMW - What's Better?

  2. Less maintenance worry - if you lease a new vehicle for three years it would be covered by the manufacturer's original warranty which means it's unlikely you will have any major maintenance-related costs (make sure you check what's covered under manufacturer's warranty).

  3. Low down payment and lower monthly payments - more often than not financing a vehicle will require you to put more money upfront, thus making lease an attractive option for people who want to drive a late-model car and are okay with not owning the vehicle at the end of the term.

  4. Improving your credit score - making your monthly lease payments on time will improve your credit score. As a result, you increase your chances of getting approved to finance the vehicle when the lease is over.
Things to keep in mind when leasing a car with bad credit

Even though some lease offers are advertised as $0 down, chances are you won't qualify for them if your credit is less than perfect. As a matter of fact, some industry experts think that if your credit score is below 720, you will have a hard time leasing a car.

That doesn't mean you shouldn't try. You might be able to lease a vehicle, but most likely you'll have to pay a high-interest rate (car loans for borrowers with a credit score under 680 are considered "subprime" and usually result in a much higher than the standard interest rate).

As a result, it will be more difficult to get approved for a lease on either a new or used vehicle. And if you get approved you might be required to pay a security deposit in addition to the down payment.

It's not all gloom and doom, though. There are things you could do to improve your chances of getting approved.

Tips for lease approval with bad credit

Your credit score doesn't need to be perfect in order to get approval for a car lease.
  • Keep it real - aim at something relatively cheap even if you think you can afford a fancier car. Drive it for a couple years, improve your credit score and then get that BMW you've always wanted. Plus, leasing a cheaper or a used car means lower monthly payments so you improve the chances of making each one on time. A little secret - look for cars towards the end of the year when new models are introduced and dealers want to make room for them by selling the previous year models - it's easier to get financing when manufacturers are motivated to move inventory.

  • Don't be fast to sign - after you've been turned down so many times it's easy to get excited when you finally get approved - don't be. Shop around, instead. Get as many quotes as you can in order to make an informed decision.

  • Get a copy of your credit report to the dealer - ask the dealers you are talking with not to run a credit check because your credit score gets lower with each inquiry and when you have bad credit, it adds up and rather quickly. By handing them a copy of your credit report you will avoid your credit score taking a hit.

  • Take over an existing lease - life happens and people sometimes have to end their lease early. One way it's done is by having someone else take it over. Note, you will still be subject of approval from the original lender but qualifying is often times much easier.

  • Put more money down or prepay for a few months - that's a way for the dealer or the leasing company to mitigate their risk. This way, when it comes to leasing a car, the total price isn't too high and your chances of getting approved increase significantly.

  • Find a co-signer - if you can't get approved for a lease no matter what you do, asking a family member to become a co-signer might be the way to go. They have to have good credit, though, because they would be responsible for making the monthly payments should you default.

  • Show proof of income - you'll dramatically improve your chances of getting a car loan if you can show proof of income (last couple of paychecks) and that what you make is enough to cover the monthly lease payment AND your other bills.


Wyoming Valley BMW

1470 Highway 315
Directions Wilkes-Barre, PA 18702

  • Sales: 570-338-6955
  • Service: 570-338-6956
  • Parts: 570-338-6957

Make an Inquiry

* Indicates a required field

Sales Hours

  • Monday 9:00 am - 8:00 pm
  • Tuesday 9:00 am - 8:00 pm
  • Wednesday 9:00 am - 8:00 pm
  • Thursday 9:00 am - 8:00 pm
  • Friday 9:00 am - 8:00 pm
  • Saturday 9:00 am - 5:00 pm
  • Sunday Closed