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Eased credit restrictions helping auto recovery

Relaxed credit standards are making it easier for consumers to get car loans, which are in turn driving car sales and stimulating the auto industry, according to data from CNW Research.

CNW revealed that buyers with bad credit accounted for 9.9 percent of new car sales in September, the highest total since February of 2008. Through the first nine months of the year, the average is at 6.8 percent, up from 5.7 percent, suggesting that lending institutions have relaxed their standards.

It’s a trend that Ellen Hughes-Cromwick, chief economist for Ford, agrees with. She told Bloomberg that “credit has begun to ease for automotive in general.…

Credit limit factors into credit score

Some consumers may be generally paying their bills on time but not seeing their bad credit rise. This can be frustrating, especially since good credit is increasingly important in getting approved for car loans and mortgages.

Drivers with bad credit may be dismayed to know that their shopping habits are dragging their score down. Even if a borrower is diligent about making their payments, they may still get a low score because they’re bumping up against their credit limit.

The current FICO formula factors a borrower’s credit limit into their score. So if, across all of their credit cards, a consumer has an upper limit of $10,000, but is spending $6,000, their score will be negatively impacted – even if they’re paying it all off.…

Study names greenest automakers

Drivers with bad credit may feel that they can’t afford a car that gets great gas mileage while also helping the economy. Though it’s true that hybrids often come at a premium compared to their gas-saving counterparts, they’ve been on the market for a couple of years now and many consumers might be able to find a great deal in the used car market.

In addition to helping the environment, drivers will also save a bundle at the pump. That means they’ll have an easier time making the payments on their car loan, as they’ll spend less on gas every month.…

Delinquencies rise overall, but car loans down

Recent data released by the American Bankers Association (ABA) shows that although Americans’ loan delinquencies rose for the first time this year, they are paying off their car loans at a greater rate.

Delinquencies, which are defined as a payment more than 30 days late, rose slightly from 2.98 to 3 percent in the second quarter. However, car loans were among the types of obligations that decreased in delinquencies, falling from 1.79 to 1.67 percent.

ABA tracks loans across eight different categories, including bank cards, home and car loans.

According to the organization, the slight increase means that the economic recovery that many Americans have predicted may have hit a stumbling block.…

Dispelling credit myths

For consumers with bad credit, improving a credit report can be the key to getting a car loan at a great rate. Yet there’s also a lot of misinformation out there about the best ways to do this.

Consumers should know right off the bat that the absolute best way to improve their scores is to use credit responsibly. By taking on a credit card or car loan and making the monthly payments on time, they may see their score rise dramatically over just a few months. Other strategies that many claim work can be minorly helpful, such as disputing inaccurate or misleading statements on the report, but there is not true cure-all for bad credit.…

Payments should be top priority

For consumers with bad credit, cleaning up a credit report and getting a better score can seem like a monumental challenge. There are a wide range of ways to improve credit, but buyers should know that the most reliable and consistent strategy is making their payments on time.

That being said, there are also more than a few myths out there about strategies to improve a credit score. KIII Channel 3 in Texas recently profiled a few of them. One myth was that paying off old debts can improve a bad score.

Once a buyer has missed a payment, that will negatively impact their score for years to come, even if they later make the payment.…

Chevy to debut new Aveo

The Chevy Aveo is a solid budget car that offers drivers the versatility of a sedan or hatchback while also providing exceptional gas mileage at 35 miles per gallon.

Now, Chevy is preparing to announce an updated 2011 version of its Aveo at the Paris Auto Show. While not yet officially unveiled, the new Aveo is said to offer sportier styling and will be better equipped to compete in the ever-increasing small car segment.

In a shift from years past, many automakers are focusing on smaller cars because of their global profitability. Small cars were popular in markets like China and Europe for years, but never really caught on in the U.S.…

Using the lowball effectively

One of the most basic negotiation tactics is the lowball. One of the keys to getting a great price on a vehicle could be the buyer’s ability to lowball a dealer and resist the salesman’s offers.

While the lowball is typically thought of as offering a price substantially lower than what something is worth, dealers also use lowballs in a slightly different way. Inflated prices on vehicles and performance packages are just like a lowball in that they offer the dealer maximum profit. Many car buyers don’t bother to negotiate these prices down to their actual value. According to Edmunds, a dealer may also lowball a trade-in and try to distract the driver by giving them a reduced price on the vehicle that they’re looking at, only to make that money back and then some on the lowballed trade.…

New Scion tC could be boon for bad credit drivers

Many drivers with bad credit feel like they’ll ultimately have to settle for a vehicle with little to no styling and few features. That’s why some drivers are surprised when they walk off the lot in a highly-desirable vehicle.

Since its inception in the early 2000s, the Scion brand has come to stand for youth and energy. Toyota has aimed Scion vehicles at young drivers who want something different out of their car in terms of styling. At the same time, the vehicles are often priced affordably.

The new Scion tC goes on sale October 1st and already, reviewers are touting the vehicle as a marked improvement over its predecessor.…

Counseling services are there to help

For buyers with bad credit, the internet can be a helpful resource in picking up some tips on how to improve credit, as well as providing buyers with an easy way to apply online for things like car loans. Yet there are also plenty of scams out in cyberspace, and consumers should do all they can to make sure they don’t fall victim to fraudsters.

One way to ensure that the advice they’re getting is sound is to go to a credit counseling service. There is a big difference between legitimate, non-profit organizations that are dedicated to helping consumers and scammers that promise to fix a credit report for an up-front fee.…

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