Bad Credit Car Finance

Applying for Car Finance With Bad Credit

We specialise in bad credit car finance; financing cars for people with a bad credit history, a thin credit file, and those that have been declined for finance by other lenders, for over 20 years!

There are numerous factors that could have had an impact on your credit file, which have resulted in you having 'bad' credit or 'poor' credit, including:

  • Having a thin credit file means that you have never taken out a substantial loan or credit agreement, or have always paid in cash, meaning you have little or no credit history.

  • Shared credit or finance agreements with another person who has/had credit issues, and now your credit file is associated with theirs.

  • Made bad financial decisions in the past, such as taking out large credit agreements with large repayments that you could not afford or pay on time.

  • A build-up of missed payments across many accounts, which may have led to your account defaulting and escalating to CCJs – these can remain on your credit file for up to six years.

You may even have bad credit because you have been previously declined from other lenders - this is common amongst self-employed applicants because it can be more difficult to prove earnings.

Do you need a van for work? Visit our Van Finance or Self-employed Van Finance page to find out more about the vans we can finance!

Representative 29.9% APR

Apply Now   Car Finance Calculator

Did you know?

Over the last 20 years, we have provided vehicle finance to over 200,000 customers, the majority of which have had previous credit problems or have a poor credit history.

Bad Credit Car Finance Specialist

Being in the dark about your bad credit history, and how it may affect your ability to obtain finance, can be a difficult situation to find yourself in. It can be hard for banks, finance companies, and lenders to trust you as your credit file only displays how you have handled the last six years of your finances, not the circumstances you found yourself in during these times which could explain why you have 'bad' or 'poor' credit.

If you have been declined for finance previously and suspect that it may be because you have bad credit history or a thin credit file, it may be worth investigating the information on your credit report, which is available through various credit agencies, such as Experian, Equifax, and Credit Karma

If you want to learn more about how you can build and maintain a healthy credit score, and the financial benefits that comes with doing so, check out our Improving Your Credit File blog.

When it comes to our poor credit car loans, you can rest assure knowing that we deal with each application on an individual basis. In addition to your credit file, we consider the personal circumstances which may have led to any previous credit issues, and aim to discuss your application with you over the phone (if we need to).

No matter your circumstances, we will carry out affordability checks to ensure the Hire Purchase finance agreement we offer is reasonable and affordable for you to repay throughout the duration of an agreed term.

Don't just take our word for it!

"Fantastic company to deal with. No issues and completely hassle free. I've had bad credit and this company was able to offer me finance even though my credit history hasn't been great. I'd thoroughly recommend this company to anybody. Great customer service skills, very prompt and thorough throughout the whole process (and considerably cheaper compared to the first finance company I went to). Thanks First Response Finance for all your help!"

- Review Centre

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“Excellent from start to finish, no fuss, no hassle, no mountains of paper work, and accepted me when others wouldn't! I now, not only have the car I wanted, but I have it at a price I can easily afford. Would have no hesitation in recommending First Response Finance to anyone wishing to finance the purchase of a car.”

- Review Centre

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How Do I Apply for Bad Credit Car Finance?

Bad Credit Car Finance 1You can use our car finance calculator to decide if a bad credit car finance agreement with First Response Finance is right for you.

Our vehicle finance calculator is easy to use. Simply choose the amount of money you want to borrow and the amount of time you want to pay it back over, and select a credit rating to get an estimate cost for Hire Purchase vehicle finance with First Response Finance.

Car Finance Calculator

Please note: the quote you are given when using our finance calculator could change depending on the information you tell us during the application process. 

The actual application process takes around five minutes online, and you will receive an instant decision on your approval. We recommend that the information you provide on your vehicle finance application form is honest - we’re here to help you finance your next car, not judge you. The more information we have about your current and past financial situation, the more it will allow us to help you when it comes to deciding whether we can finance your next vehicle.

Check out our Hire Purchase Finance Process page to find out more about how our application process works.

Apply Now

Bad Credit Car Finance FAQs

Can I get a car with a bad credit history? 

If you have had difficulty obtaining credit in the past, whether this being a result of missed payments, a self-employed status, or having little to show on your credit file, we may still be able to help you. When you apply for vehicle finance, we will have a conversation with you to understand the circumstances around why you have got 'bad’ credit and make a decision from there.

We will always try our best to help, however, we will never agree to provide vehicle finance if we believe that it will put you in more financial difficulty.


Does financing a car with bad credit make the process more difficult? 

No, it is not anymore difficult to obtain car finance when you have bad credit!

When someone applies for our bad credit car finance product, to truly understand their needs, we like to speak with them on the phone. During the application process, we may also ask customers to provide supporting documents, such as bank statements, payslips, and/or proof of address - this is to ensure that we are financing customers who can afford the repayments.

We understand that obtaining these documents maybe be difficult as they are not always to hand, which is why we have an online Customer Portal available to those who apply for bad credit car finance, where they can easily upload any documents that
we request in attempt to streamline the application process and make it even simpler.


How long does a bad credit car loan take to be approved? 

Applying for bad credit car finance can take a little longer than applying for car finance or a loan through a high street bank. This is due to the extra checks that we must undertake on our customers bad credit car finance applications to ensure that we are treating our customers fairly and not putting them in any financial difficulty.


Can I get a car loan with a CCJ or IVA?

We can provide vehicle finance to customers who have defaults and/or CCJs, although we may request further paperwork, to ensure that we are not placing our customers in further financial difficulties.

If you have an IVA, we can only consider providing you with vehicle finance if you have the express permission of your Insolvency Practitioner – it is best to get this before you apply.

Hire Purchase Pros and Cons


  • Simple to arrange
  • Fixed interest rate
  • No deposit required
  • No annual mileage restrictions
  • Flexible term lengths (18 - 61 months)
  • Fixed monthly (or weekly) repayments
  • Vehicle belongs to you after the final payment has been made
  • Customers are protected under the Consumer Rights Act (2015)


  • Finance is subject to status and not guaranteed 
  • You do not own the vehicle until the final payment has been made
  • The vehicle is at risk of repossession if you do not keep up with repayments
  • Not suitable if you plan on paying off your finance agreement within six months

First Response Finance is a responsible car finance lender, and all decisions are made in the best interests of the customer; based on credit scores, status, and income at the time of application. We will never approve an application if we believe you may struggle with repayments.

No application is guaranteed. All finance is subject to status, and terms and conditions apply.

Get independent advice on money, finance products, debt management and budgeting through Citizens Advice and Money Helper.

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