How do I add my wife to my car loan?

My wife wants to boost her credit score, so I offered to put her on my car loan. What’s the best way to add someone to an existing loan?

Eric Schad · Updated on
Reviewed by Shannon Martin, Licensed Insurance Agent.
In order to add a new person to your car loan, you will need to refinance the loan. Lenders won’t allow you to simply add a co-borrower, so this is the only way to get your wife on the loan.
But before you refinance, you may want to do some research first. If your wife has a low credit score, putting her on the loan may result in a higher interest rate—and refinancing into a higher-APR loan isn’t a smart financial move.
Additionally, refinancing a vehicle will typically require lenders to make a hard inquiry on your credit score, which could temporarily lower your own credit. You may also be required to submit a new application or have the vehicle re-titled upon refinancing—both of which can cost you extra money. 
If you can’t find an equal or better interest rate when attempting to refinance, don’t stress. There are several other ways for your wife to rebuild her credit without putting her on your car loan, including:
  • Pay down high-interest debt
  • Pay off any delinquent or charged-off accounts
  • Put more money toward outstanding installment loans to pay down the principal
MORE: Pros and cons of refinancing a car
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