Frozen Credit Market Tightens Auto Buy Criteria

  • November 17, 2008
Auto shopping site and research firm says the frozen credit market has tightened credit criteria for individual car buyers. The firm says consumers with average credit scores will be required to make down payments as high as 20%, and lenders are restricting the length of loans; six-year loans may no longer be an option for many consumers.

The firm also says the minimum credit score required for an auto loan has risen to around 500; The credit score required for the best loan rates has risen to at least 720, up from 700 a few months ago. And consumers with the best credit can expect an interest rate as low as 5.95%, while consumers with average credit may see rates as high as 12.5%.--Karl Greenberg

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