Veterans Day can be a great time to buy a car since we're already seeing year-end deals starting to crop up in November. However, if you're active duty or military retiree, you may qualify for new vehicle discounts all year long through some manufacturers.
When it comes to buying a car with questionable credit, military or not, qualifying for those deals can be tough. Let's look at some of the brands that offer military discounts, and how to improve your chances of qualifying if your credit score isn't as high as you'd like.
Veterans Day Car Deals Vary
Military discounts aren't as common as they once were with all manufacturers’ vehicle lineups. Some may run Veterans Days deals or sales, but any additional discount is likely to be time-sensitive and expire within days of a holiday like Veterans Day. Military discounts on new cars may only apply when you finance through the manufacturer.
Many manufacturers do offer military discounts year-round, though the form they take can vary. Around the holiday, some brands, like Hyundai, have increased their military offerings – last year they doubled their military rebate. Whether it's special APR financing, a cash rebate, or specialized pricing, all military deals require proof that you're either in active service, or that you're a retiree.
Right now, amid the chip shortage that's halting some new vehicle supply, the most common deal we're seeing surrounding veterans and active military is the cash rebate.
The best deals typically come from luxury dealers like BMW and Lexus. BMW is currently offering special incentives of $500 up to $11,000 for qualifying military personnel and retirees. At Lexus, qualifying military personnel and retirees can qualify for up to a $1,000 rebate, which can be combined with other offers.
These manufacturers are offering military discounts:
- Acura – Offers $750 toward select models
- Honda – Offers up to $500 off new models
- Hyundai – Offers a $500 military bonus
- Nissan – Offers up to $1,000
- Toyota – Offers a $500 discount
Many automakers offer specials around veterans day, and independent dealerships may offer their own sales during this time of year, so be sure to check with the dealership before heading out the door.
Qualifying for a New Car With Poorer Credit
If you're a military service member or retiree and you're looking for a deal on your next vehicle, but are worried about credit standing in your way, we're here to help. Most military discounts and programs are available regardless of your credit standing, however, most of them apply to the lease or purchase of a new vehicle through a captive finance company. And those can be difficult to get with bad credit.
Here are a few tips for qualifying for a new car with a lower credit score:
- Bring a large down payment. A down payment is a must for a bad credit car loan, but the bigger the better, especially if you're credit score isn't up to snuff. Most bad credit borrowers are required to provide at least $1,000 down, or 10% of the vehicle's selling price. It's recommended you put down at least 20% on a new car to help qualify.
- Opt for affordability. If your goal is a new car but your credit is bad, opt for the most economical option for your situation. Just because you're aiming for a new car doesn't mean it needs to be the top trim of a luxury brand.
- Have a cosigner or co-borrower. If you need a boost in your credit score, a cosigner may help you qualify for a new car, but keep in mind it's your responsibility, they only give the lender peace of mind and act as a backup payer. A co-borrower is typically a spouse, and they do share the ownership and responsibility of payment with you. Remember whoever you ask to help you out should have good to excellent credit.
Ready to Find Your Next Car Dealer?
If you're ready to find your next vehicle, whether on Veterans Day or any time of year, we want to help. Here at The Car Connection, we have a nationwide network of special finance dealers that are signed up with dealerships to help people in many credit situations. We want to help connect you to a dealer in your area. Simply fill out our fast, free, car loan request form and we'll get right to work.