Looking for an Auto Loan? All Credit Approved! REALLY?

So, you are sitting in front of your computer online searching for deals on a used vehicle. Your situation is simple, you need a vehicle to get you around. Living in the Maritimes without a mode of transportation can be challenging and we all have commitments that are impossible to get to on foot. Mass transit isn’t always an option especially in suburban and rural areas. Hence, we find ourselves searching online for that mode of transportation that can fit our lifestyle and pocketbook…a used vehicle.

Here is your concern…your credit history isn’t the best and you are afraid you will not qualify under the standard terms of the lending institutions. You come across advertisements that offer All Credit Approved. So, you apply. No concern, right? It’s only an application with no commitment. Well it’s not that simple and there are a few things you need to understand before you provide your personal information.

First, not all the companies posting the ads are forthcoming about how their business model works. There are numerous companies that advertise that they can get you a vehicle no matter what your circumstances are but are not car dealers and don’t even have any inventory. These are what the industry classifies as “lead providers” and they take your information and sell it to dealers at a premium. They state they work with a list of dealers and will work with them to get you in the vehicle you want. Ok, that sounds like a plan.

Reality Check – Your information is sold to the highest bidder with little regard for your situation. No big deal? This type of situation works against you. Let me break it down:

  • Suddenly you are providing information to a dealer that you don’t know anything about.
  • Dealers review your situation and develop a strategy to put you in a vehicle that is advantage to them. Meaning, you could possible overpay or be told that this is the only vehicle you qualify for based on your credit history.

Not the way I would want to walk into the sales process as it puts them in the driver’s seat. I am not suggesting that every dealer that purchases leads does not have your best interests in mind. I am only pointing out that the lead companies soliciting you with promises really don’t care about your situation they just want to pass your information on for a profit.

Now you may ask, “Why should I care that they give my information to a dealer?” Here are a couple of concerns you should be aware of:

  • Each time someone requests your credit report, an inquiry is posted on your credit report and this drives down your credit score that lenders utilize to access your credit history
  • As previously stated, dealers will access your situation and not present you with the proper options to increase their own bottom line.
  • You have lost control of your information as well as your situation to someone you don’t even know or want to do business with.
  • Not all credit is approved. Certain minimum criteria must be met before an approval will be given and no dealer can change these requirements.

In summary I would like to add that the statement “All Credit Approved” is not what I am concerned with. Customers who select dealers that suggest they can assist is not a bad thing. If they are truly a dealer and you have selected them through your research, then I would consider this an innocent solicitation. The customer is in control of their information and chose the dealer they would like to do business with. My beef is with companies that solicit your info and then sell it to the highest bidder. I can’t see how this benefits any consumer.

These are just a few personal thoughts from your friendly neighborhood dealer, DrivingTime Auto. We are here to assist you and can be found online at www.drivingtime.ca. We would love to be able to assist you but if you are just looking for some information or advice drop us a note or give a call! We will do our best to steer you in the right direction free of charge with no strings attached. We just want everyone to get a fair deal!