ACCC Provides Critical Tips to Help Consumers Manage the Car Buying Process

National non-profit describes what you need to know when purchasing a car during major holidays.

February 13, 2015

A woman holding car keysFor many dealerships across the country, Presidents’ Day marks the kick-off to the car-buying season, with promotional events aimed at driving consumers to make a purchase. In fact, one recent survey from found that typically there is a 25 percent increase in sales over the course of the weekend. To help consumers manage the car buying process, which can often be complex, national non-profit American Consumer Credit Counseling has released tips on what every consumer needs to know before making this big purchase.

“Credit plays a very significant role in determining cost and rates. A good rule of thumb would be to have five lines of well-paid credit with at least some sort of loan that requires monthly payments,” said Steve Trumble, President and CEO of American Consumer Credit Counseling. “Typically, lenders want to see at least two to three years of credit history as well.”

Before making a big purchase, like buying a car, a consumer needs to be informed and aware of their credit score. When applying for an auto loan, any mortgages, delinquent payments and past auto loans will be considered. Applicants that pay their bills on time and have reputable credit history are more inclined to be approved by their bank over someone who has not established any credit. Not only will knowing your credit score help expedite the process, but it will also help the dealer find the perfect car for you based on your financial and credit situation.

ACCC offers tips to guide consumers in the car buying process this Presidents’ Day:

  • Do your research. Know what type of car you want to purchase.  Are you looking for a utility vehicle or sedan?  Do you want new or preowned.
  • Know what you are willing to spend. Are you willing to spend/commit to a $20k or $35k? What monthly payment can you afford? Understanding your budget will help to ensure that you do not fall victim to buyer’s remorse.
  • Shop around ahead of time.  Do your research on the type of vehicle you want to purchase.  Is safety a priority for you?  Or is it more about fuel efficiency, towing capacity, etc?
  • Research the price of the car ahead of time and shop around dealerships.  Don’t just settle for one price from one dealership. A few hundred dollars makes a difference on your bottom line.
  • If you are financing, shop around for rates.  Determine the best rates and terms of financing through the dealership as well as your banking institution.  Banks offer both new and used auto loans as well and can be a good option.

ACCC is a 501(c)3 organization, that provides free credit counseling, bankruptcy counseling, and housing counseling to consumers nationwide in need of financial literacy education and money management. For more information, contact ACCC:

  • For credit counseling, call 800-769-3571
  • For bankruptcy counseling, call 866-826-6924
  • For housing counseling, call 866-826-7180
  • For information on financial education workshops in New England, call 800-769-3571 x1980
    Or visit us online at

About American Consumer Credit Counseling

American Consumer Credit Counseling (ACCC) is a non-profit 501(c)(3) organization dedicated to empowering consumers to achieve financial health through education, counseling, and debt management. ACCC provides individuals with practical solutions for solving financial problems and recognizes that consumers’ financial difficulties are often not the result of poor spending habits, but more frequently from extenuating circumstances beyond their control. As one of the nation’s leading providers of financial education and credit counseling services, ACCC works with consumers to help them with the best plan of action to reduce their debt and regain financial stability. ACCC is accredited by the Better Business Bureau and holds an A+ rating. It is also a member of the Association of Independent Consumer Credit Counseling Agencies. For more information or to access free financial education resources log on to or visit