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Most auto lenders require a down payment to be approved for a car loan, even for shoppers with really good credit scores. Learn how much down payment to save before you go car shopping and how much down payment will be required if you have bad credit.

Auto lenders almost always require a down payment on a car loan. The down payment can vary based on the price of the car and your credit score.

  • If you have a high credit score, you’re less of a risk for the lender, so your down payment may be anywhere from $0 to 20%.
  • Nowadays, 10 to 20% is a standard down payment, regardless of your credit score or the amount you’re borrowing. The less risk you are for a lender, the lower down payment you’ll be required to pay.
  • The bigger down payment you give may affect your interest rate and your monthly payments. If you can afford to give a larger down payment, the lender may offer you a lower interest rate, since you’re lessening their risk on the loan. A bigger down payment will also lower your monthly payment.
  • If you have bad credit, the lender may require you to give anywhere from 20 to 30%, because you are a bigger risk for them. The more you pay up-front, the better your chances are of being approved for the loan.
  • There are many factors that determine what down payment the lender will ask you to pay on the vehicle. Your income, price of the car and credit score are some of the most common factors that determine the down payment you’ll have to give.
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