How to lease a car with bad credit

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How to lease a car with bad credit
Leasing a car if you have bad credit (lease image by Renato Francia from

Car dealers need to lease cars. People with bad credit need cars to drive. And there are so many people in this day with poor credit that something has to give. Many car dealers and manufacturers have special leasing programs for those with poor credit.

Skill level:


  1. 1

    Obtain a copy of your credit report and your credit score. You want to focus on the FICO and Fair Isaac score, as this is the score that a majority of car dealers and manufacturers look at when considering a new car lease. Clean up your credit report by asking the credit reporting agencies to remove items that aren't factual. Improve your credit score as much as you possibly can.

  2. 2

    Locate a large car dealership. The largest car dealers are the ones that do the highest volume of car leases and can usually fit leases in for those who have less-than-ideal credit. Ford's Red Carpet Leasing program is renowned for working with those who have lower credit ratings.

  3. 3

    Sit down with the finance director at a large car dealership and show the person your credit score. Don't let them do a credit check on you until you've struck a deal, because you want to try to work on getting your credit score raised and credit checks count mildly negatively toward your credit rating. But if you show the finance director your credit score, he should be able to tell you whether you can work a deal.

  4. 4

    Move on to the next dealership, if the first one says no. Because you have bad credit, you may have to visit several dealerships before you find one who will lease you a new car.

  5. 5

    Have plenty of cash on hand. Once you find a car dealer who will lease you a car with your bad credit, you may have to pay more than a person with good credit would on a down payment for that new car lease. Having plenty of cash on hand helps with this.

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