Buying a new or used car usually involves paying cash, leasing, or taking out a loan to finance part or all of the vehicle purchase price. But, you can also choose to “buy here pay here” (BHPH) at a dealership that offers this payment alternative. Especially if you have very poor credit or no credit, a BHPH car dealership may be the right option for you.

The BHPH dealership lends you the money to buy a car, so you don’t have to get an auto loan through a conventional lender. Your BHPH dealer can help you get a car you like, even if your credit is bad. But, there are some things you should know, before you go car shopping at a BHPH dealership.

Being prepared with the information you need when you go to the car dealership can make your car buying process easier and quicker. Here are five important questions you should ask your BHPH dealership before you agree to buy a vehicle.

1. What Items Should I Bring When I Come To The Dealership?

Ask which documents you need to bring before you go car shopping at the dealership. Be sure that you have all documents with you, to greatly speed up the process of purchasing the car you want. The list of needed items may vary, depending on your specific credit situation and on the dealer’s policies. Generally, you’ll probably need the following documents in order to buy a car at a BHPH dealership:

  • Driver’s License
  • Social Security Number
  • Proof of Employment and Income Amount (paycheck stubs, with one less than 30 days old)
  • Financial Information (bank checking account, savings, and credit-cards)
  • Proof of Residence (rental agreement or mortgage document)
  • Current Utility Bill (phone, electric, gas, or water)
  • List of Several References (with complete contact info)
  • Proof of Automobile Insurance
  • Down Payment Amount

Call the dealership before you visit, to ask exactly which documents are necessary. The dealership representative will help you make sure you have everything you need.

2. What Payment Types Do You Accept?

Instead of the monthly payments you would make to a traditional lender, you may be set up on a weekly or bi-weekly (twice monthly) payment schedule at your BHPH dealership. You may be required to bring your cash payment to their location, or they may allow various other methods of payment. Ask if your payments can be made online or by phone. Some dealers allow payment by money order. Or, the BHPH dealer may require payments by automatic withdrawal from your checking or savings account, or by credit card. Discuss various payment options with the dealer, to find the one that works best for your particular financial situation.

3. Where Are You Located?

It is important to choose a dealership that is located near your home or workplace. When you look down the list of BHPH dealerships in your area, find one that is conveniently located, to make it as easy as possible for you to make your payment. Also, BHPH auto dealers prefer working with a customer who lives or works near their dealership. That’s because a closer location makes it geographically as easy as possible for the customer to maintain the payment agreement. So, picking a dealership near you may make it even easier for you to get the car you want.

4. What Level Of Quality Can I Expect In Your Vehicles?

Bad credit should not keep you from buying a quality automobile. On the contrary, BHPH dealers focus on providing reliable vehicles. They understand that customers are likely to be more motivated to keep making payments for a car that functions well. Ask your dealer about their inspection standards and the processes they use for reconditioning the vehicles they offer. Also, confirm that repairs and maintenance services are available either at the dealership, or at a qualified repair facility.

5. What Is Your Policy On Late Payments?

Although everyone plans to make car payments on time, sometimes a payment may be late. It’s very important to understand the dealership’s policy on late payments. You should ask several questions regarding late payments:

  • Is there is a grace period for late payments? Or, will the car be repossessed on the day after the payment was due but not paid?
  • Will someone contact you before repossession? Or, will they simply take back the car without any discussion?

A late payment may never become a problem, but you should be clear on what to expect if you ever have an emergency that causes a payment delay. It’s also a good idea to ask if the dealership routinely reports positive and negative information about your payments to credit reporting agencies. You should know if your loan is helping you rebuild or start your credit history.

Hawthorne Auto Square

We are a leading BHPH car dealership in Hawthorne, CA. You can buy here and pay here, so we can help you get a car when other dealers can’t. Hawthorne Auto Square accepts any type of income, including SSI, disability, and government assistance. Even if you have a repossession on your credit record, we can help you. We offer a huge selection of low-mileage, later-model used cars, many with payments as low as $150. We are committed to our customers’ satisfaction, above all. And, we’re very proud that our customers come back and refer their family and friends to us.
All Hawthorne Auto Square used cars are put through extensive inspection and California emissions testing (as required) before they are placed onto our lot. All of our cars have a 30-day or 1,000 mile warranty, and we offer excellent extended warranty options.

For More Information

For more information on buying a car with bad credit or no credit, call Hawthorne Auto Square at (866) 707-7664. Or, stop in and browse our hundreds of later model, low mileage automobiles at 11646 Prairie Avenue. For more than 25 years, we have been helping our customers get the cars they need.