How do I ask a bank for a car loan?

Right now, I don’t have enough money to buy the car I want. It's not that I can't afford gas, insurance, and maintenance, I just can't buy it outright. How do I ask my bank for a car loan?

Eric Schad · Updated on
Reviewed by Shannon Martin, Licensed Insurance Agent.
It sounds like you’ve done your research! You can get a
car loan
—also known as financing—from either a third-party bank or the manufacturer of the vehicle you want to purchase. Don’t forget to compare interest rates so you know which bank is offering the better deal. 
The simplest way to finance a car is to
apply for pre-approval
. The result will let you know whether or not the bank is willing to lend you money, how much, and what your payments will look like. If you’re successfully pre-approved, you can be certain your purchase won’t be rejected at the dealership!
To apply for pre-approval, take the following items to the bank of your choice:
  • Proof of identity
  • Proof of residency
  • Proof of income (such as employment pay stubs)
  • Method of downpayment (such as cheque)
  • The vehicle identification number (VIN) of the car you want to purchase (if you have one)
The bank will
check your credit score
and consider your financial situation before making their decision. 
Are you pre-approved? Congratulations! Now you can shop with more confidence or head straight to the dealership to sign the paperwork. Have a happy new car honeymoon!
View full answer 
Jerry partners with more than 50 insurance companies, but our content is independently researched, written, and fact-checked by our team of editors and agents. We aren’t paid for reviews or other content.

Join 4M+ members in lowering their car insurance

Browse By Topics

Easiest way to compare and buy car insurance

No long forms
No spam or unwanted phone calls
Quotes from top insurance companies
Find insurance savings — it's 100% free