If you’ve gone through the humility of having your car repossessed, it’s no doubt an experience that you will never forget. It’s also probably an experience that you will not want to repeat! However, car ownership is an essential part of life for many. If you still need a vehicle to get back and forth to work and transport your family, here are some actions you can take to help you get into your next vehicle after repossession.
- 1) If there is a balance, pay it off….IMMEDIATELY!
Often when a car is repossessed, there is still a balance on the car loan, which is the difference between the value of the car and the amount that was outstanding on your loan. To help begin the process of rebuilding your credit, it is crucial that you pay off this balance as soon as you have the money available to do so. Even if you need to make payments on it, some progress is better than none. Getting this balance paid off will certainly have a positive impact on your credit, and help you get a better rate on your next car.
- 2) Give your credit time to heal.
If it’s possible, wait awhile before you make your next vehicle purchase. The longer you are able to wait, the better. A repossession has the most impact on your credit in the first few months following the event, so you should try to wait a minimum of six months before buying another car. If you can wait a few years, so much the better. In the mean time, consider options such as public transportation, or borrowing a car from a friend or family member in exchange for doing chores or running errands.
- 3) Buy through a smaller dealer.
When it comes time to buy, try to go through a smaller dealer. Smaller neighborhood dealers tend to be more understanding of bad credit circumstances and might be more willing to give you a second chance. If you approach a neighborhood dealer with a down payment in hand, you’ll be a much more appealing risk, as you are willing to put some investment into the car, as well.
Getting your car repo’d is a horrible experience, but it is most certainly one that you can recover from. Over time you’ll chalk it up as another one of life’s stories, and you’ll be able to share your wisdom from this dilemma with others.