Many car dealerships place heavy value on your bad credit rating, and don’t take time to look at the rest of the picture. Finally, the solution is here.

A low credit score can feel oppressive. Living with that number seems unfair because you know your own character better than the typical loan administrator does. Your determination to pay bills on time and your ability to overcome adversity shouldn’t be solely related to your credit score. Unfortunately, many car dealerships place heavy value on your credit rating and don’t take the time to look at the big picture.

Trying to buy a car with bad credit can seem impossible. You may have even been turned down by multiple dealers already. At US Auto Sales, we know there’s more to the story. That’s why we’re willing to get creative to make car-buying a reality for people with bad credit. Here are five steps to overcoming your low credit score and going home with a new pair of wheels.

1. Research

Put yourself in a loan officer’s shoes and run your own credit report. Look at it with a fine-tooth comb and be sure there are no mistakes. Often, consumers see a ding on their credit that shouldn’t be there. A few quick phone calls can sort things out if you see an issue that doesn’t seem right. When shopping for a car, bring a copy of your credit report with you so you can discuss what’s on it with your potential lender.

2. Take Action

Get serious about paying your bills on time if you haven’t already. Even just a few months of on-time payments can strengthen your credit score. Set a budget and stick to it. Pay down your current debts, hold off on excessive credit card spending, and strive toward achieving a pay raise at work to better your income-to-debt ratio. All these actions can better position you to drive your favorite ride off the lot.

3. Learn

Interest rate, loan duration, principal balance—these terms are crucial to know. Learn the way loans work before trying to find a new vehicle. Understanding this information will ensure you get to keep the car you eventually choose because you’ll know how to manage your financing.

4. Know You’re Not Alone

You’re not the first person to repair credit over time. In fact, over half of America has a subprime score, according to a recent report published by the Corporation for Enterprise Development. That means no one at US Auto Sales is surprised or deterred by your situation. Knowing you’re not alone can be a relief. Having a trusted partner in credit reparation can boost your confidence even more.

5. Plan

Buying a car with bad credit is an experience even sweeter than you’d imagine. Once you get into that car, there’s no better feeling. Why? Because this purchase is much more than just independence, it’s also the start of something new. Plan to look back on this date as the day things changed and your credit score started to climb.

Remember, in a year or two, when your credit score is stronger, you may be ready for another vehicle upgrade.

Bethany Johnson

About the AuthorBethany Johnson, Contributor

Meet Bethany Johnson, pop-culture and modern corporate reporter. Before the days of SEO, Bethany was immersed in the professional snowboarding industry. Through sponsorships, interviews, press releases, and public conduct, she promoted gear, brands and concepts. In 2007, Bethany went to the National Championships and won a bronze medal (3rd place) in the SnowboardCross event.  Coming out of the world of professional snowboarding, she chose the office of a private investigator on Capitol Hill.  There, she says her hunger for a good story only grew.   Like many milennials, Bethany is industry certified in (seemingly) random things: Oracle 11g SQL, snowboarding movement analysis, Microsoft Access database systems, and pet therapy.  For years, corporate clients like Tom's of Maine and Purina have relied on her to generate buzz on their sites.  Media consumption for media consumption's sake is finally history. So get to clicking, and enjoy.