If you’re looking for car loans in BC, there are many options for all credit scores. Find out how much car loans typically cost in this province, how to get approved, and the steps you need to take to apply and find the right lender. You can also compare loan providers to find the best financing option for your personal needs.
Compare car loans in BC
Where to apply for car loans in British Columbia
You can apply for car loans in BC from a number of different lenders:
1. Bank loans
Banks can offer car loans in BC with competitive rates, but you’ll usually need a good credit score (660+) to apply.
|Sample banks in BC offering car loans:|
BMO, TD Bank, RBC, CIBC, Scotiabank, HSBC, Canadian Western Bank and National Bank.
2. Credit union loans
Credit unions in BC usually offer smaller car loans that have less strict eligibility criteria. These auto loans will often come with lower interest rates than online car loans, but you’ll need a good credit score to apply. You’ll also need to be a credit union member.
|Sample credit unions in BC offering car loans:|
Coast Capital, Vancity, Coastal Community Credit Union, Greater Vancouver Community Credit Union, Island Savings and Community Savings Credit Union.
3. Online loans
Online lenders tend to offer car loans with higher interest rates than banks or credit unions. However, these lenders usually have more flexible eligibility criteria. Many online lenders are able to provide bad credit car loans to BC residents.
|Sample car loan providers in BC:|
Loans Canada, CarsFast, Canada Auto Finance, Car Loans Canada, Vancouver Auto Credit, Car Loans 411 and Canada Drives.
4. Dealership or car broker loans
Dealerships often offer higher interest rates on car loans, but they can be very convenient. It may be easier to qualify for a bad credit car loan in BC from dealerships as well. It could also be easier to negotiate your auto financing rates if your dealer wants to secure a sale.
|Sample providers in BC offering car loans:|
Car brokers such as AutoTrader or carpages.ca, online dealers such as Clutch and Canada Drives, and local in-person car dealerships.
Steps to find your top choice for car loans in BC
Follow these steps to find the best car loans in BC for your unique personal situation:
- Compare lenders. Your first step to finding the best car loans in BC is to compare a number of different lenders. Look for the lowest car loan rates, see if you qualify, ask about hidden fees and make sure your lender has a solid reputation for providing good customer service. Start by comparing BC car loan options above.
- Get pre-approved. Apply for car loan pre-approval to get an idea of the actual rates you’ll pay with your selected providers. Sometimes the rates advertised on a company’s website won’t be available to you and it’s best to know in advance how much you’ll have to pay.
- Make a down payment. Decide how much you can afford to pay upfront. You’ll often get better rates if you can show you have some savings set aside for a down payment. It will also knock money off the purchase price and lower the interest you pay over time.
- Choose the right term. Select the shortest term possible that will still give you affordable monthly payments. This ensures that you pay a minimal amount of interest while being able to consistently make your monthly payments.
- Use your car as collateral. Use the car you want to buy as collateral to secure your loan and get lower interest rates. This will help “de-risk” your loan for your lender since they can repossess your car to cover your loan costs if you default on your payments.
- Enlist a cosigner. Ask a friend or family member to cosign your loan if you have a less than ideal credit score. This will net you lower interest rates and you’ll have a chance to build your credit score by making on-time car loan payments.
- Improve your credit score. If you’re struggling to find an affordable loan with a reasonable interest rate, you may want to consider waiting to get a car loan. This will give you time to rebuild your credit so you can qualify for better loan terms in the future.
How much do car loans in BC cost?
The cost of car loans in BC will vary based on a number of factors such as your term, interest rate and the ticket price of your car.
According to a March 2023 study by AutoTrader, the average cost of a new car in BC is $63,726 while used cars average out at around $43,425. Statistics Canada indicates that the latest average interest rate on a car loan in Canada is 8.13%. You’ll typically pay more interest for a bad credit loan but you could pay a little bit less if you have an excellent credit score.
Car finance calculator for BC auto loans
You can use the car finance calculator below to calculate how much you could pay each month for a car loan in BC. Simply enter the details of any loan you’re interested in, and hit the Calculate button to find out how much your monthly payment will be and the overall cost of your car loan.
Car finance calculator in BCCalculate how much you could expect to pay each month on your car loan in BC
|Loan terms (in years)|
Fill out the form and click on “Calculate” to see your estimated monthly payment.
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Based on your loan terms
Representative sample: Compare costs for car loans in British Columbia
Use the following sample interest rates to compare how much you could expect to pay for car loans in BC based on your credit score (assuming a 5 year loan term, 12% HST sales tax and a 10% down payment).
Car loan costs in BC for an average new car (priced at $57,467):
|Credit score||Interest rate||Monthly payment||Total interest paid|
Car loan costs in BC for an average used car (priced at $41,848):
|Credit score||Interest rate||Monthly payment||Total interest|
As you can see, you’ll have a higher monthly payment and pay more in interest over time with a bad credit score. The better your credit score is, the less you’ll pay each month and the less interest you’ll pay on your loan overall.
Can I get a bad credit car loan in BC?
Yes, some online lenders and dealerships offer bad credit car loans in BC. Because many bad credit car loan providers are web-based, you can apply for them whether you live in Vancouver, Victoria, Burnaby or any other area of British Columbia.
Bad credit car loans are sometimes called subprime loans and tend to come with high interest rates between 10% and 30%. They may also come with longer payment terms which will drive up the amount of interest you pay over time.
You can qualify for a car loan with bad credit by filling out an application just as you would with any other car loan in BC. While this type of loan can be a helpful last resort option, you may want to build up your credit score before applying for a car loan to avoid taking on too much debt. You can also explore other options if you want to avoid the high costs of a bad credit loan in BC.
How much can I borrow with car loans in British Columbia?
Dealership financing in BC is generally available for the full price of the car, while a private car loan lender will often offer auto financing up to $50,000 or $75,000. Keep in mind that the amount of money you’re approved for will depend on factors such as your income, your credit score, your current debt load and the price of the car you want.
While you may be able to borrow amounts between $1,000 and $75,000, there are some rules you can follow to figure out how much it makes sense to borrow based on your income.
The 10% to 15% rule
This rule implies that the total operating cost of a car (including purchase price, insurance, gas, and other costs) should fall between 10% and 15% of your annual income. Check out the table below to determine how much you may be able to borrow for a car loan in BC based on your salary.
|Annual salary||Budget for car (10% to 15%)||Monthly budget|
|$30,000||$3,000 – $4,500||$250 – $375|
|$50,000||$5,000 – $7,500||$417 – $625|
|$80,000||$8,000 – $12,000||$667 – $1,000|
|$100,000||$10,000 – $15,000||$833 – $1,250|
The 20/4/10 rule
The 20/4/10 rule is a handy guideline to go by when buying and budgeting for a car financing in BC. This rule states that you should put down 20%, obtain a loan term no longer than 4 years, and keep monthly car payments (including principal, interest, insurance, gas and other operating costs) at or below 10% of your monthly pre-tax income.
Basic eligibility requirements for auto financing in BC
You may need to meet the following eligibility criteria to qualify for car loans in British Columbia:
- Be at least 19 years of age (the age of majority in BC)
- Be a Canadian citizen or a permanent resident with a valid Canadian address
- Be employed and have a steady income
- Meet credit score and income requirements set out by your lender
How to apply for car loans in BC
You can follow these steps to apply for car loans in British Columbia:
- Apply in person or online. Apply with your bank, dealership or credit union in person or fill out an online application with a private lender.
- Fill out an application. Input personal information such as your name, email address, phone number and employment/income information.
- Provide or upload additional documents. Supply proof of ID, pay stubs, employment history and information about your debts and assets as required.
- Authorise a credit check. Agree to undergo a credit check as part of your application – and expect to get a temporary ding on your credit score as a result.
- Submit your application. Review your details and submit your application in person or online. Wait for a loan decision.
- Negotiate your terms. If approved, negotiate your interest rates, fees and loan term before signing onto a loan. Walk away if the loan costs more than you can afford.
Frequently asked questions about car loans in British Columbia
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