Looking for insider information on what questions truck lenders will ask you when you apply for a truck loan? Applying for a truck loan doesn’t have to be difficult. Arming yourself with the right information will prepare you for the task. If you’re working with an efficient finance company, they will most likely prequalify their clients prior to asking them for an application. There’s no point in wasting the customers time on filling out an application and sending over the other required paperwork if it can be predetermined they are not qualified by asking a few questions. Our staff is trained to ask the following prequalifying questions before they take an application.
1. How long have you been in business if you have a corporation, LLC or DBA?
Most programs offer lower down payments for businesses who’ve been established for 2 years or more. Even if you’re an owner operator and you’ve been operating for more than 2 years this will open more doors for more programs versus a person just starting out on his first truck.
2. What does your credit look like?
Just like anything else that is being financed, credit does come in to play. Even though we do specialize in people who have challenged credit, we still need to get an idea
what we’re dealing with to properly inform the client on what they need to expect. We normally will ask if the client knows what their scores are from the three credit bureaus. If they don’t know that, we ask if they have good, average or bad credit. From there we’ll even go into more detail questions; like if client has ever filed a bankruptcy or if they have any other issues like previous repossessions or tax liens.
3. Have you picked out a truck yet?
Before a credit officer can look at your file they not only need to see your application and credit, but they also need to see the collateral you are looking to finance. So
having a truck or even a few trucks picked out prior to calling would be a good idea.
4. How many miles are on the truck?
Assuming you are in the market for used truck, knowing the mileage on the truck is very important. Some programs have limitations on the amount of miles. So
again, having a truck picked out in advance will help expedite the process when trying to prequalify for a truck.
5. What year is the truck?
Again, assuming you are in the market for a used truck, knowing the age of the truck is just as important as knowing the mileage on the truck. There are programs that have
limitations on the age of the truck, sometimes the older the truck the shorter the term on the financing.
6. Does the truck you’re considering have a sleeper or daycab?
We have some special programs for start-up owner operators that don’t require a large down payment and it has no age limit or mileage limits for daycabs. Where other programs require a larger down payment and have restrictions on age and mileage for trucks with sleepers.
7. Do you have a fleet of trucks, and if so how many are in your fleet?
There are some programs that only require your 1st payment in lieu of down payment. But this program is specifically for business owners who have been in business for a 2 year minimum and who already have a minimum fleet of 2 trucks. Just like we mentioned earlier, the longer time in business and being able to prove your ability of running a successful business will open the doors to other financing programs.
8. How much of a down payment have you set aside to purchase this truck?
Knowing your budget for any business is essential prior to making any large purchases. Depending on the credit and age of the truck, the down payment could be more for someone who had a recent bankruptcy versus someone who has perfect credit. It’s our job to set the expectations on our first conversation with all our clients, even if that means we have to be honest and say we don’t have a program for you at this time due to the limited funds available for the down payment that may be required.
9. How long have you had your CDL?
Some programs require the business owner or one of their drivers to have a minimum of 3 years driving experience with their CDL. Some programs have no requirements at all. We offer programs for both seasoned drivers and new drivers.
10. How soon are you looking to purchase this truck?
Depending on the situation, clients may have a strict timeline. They may have committed to a contract or a new hire driver. The fastest we are able to fund a transaction would be within 3 business days, but the requirements for this program is completely different compared to a program that takes 7 to 10 business days to fund. By informing us on your timeline we can determine which programs are capable of fulfilling your expectations. Hopefully these 10 qualifying questions will help you prepare yourself for the next semi truck or big rig you plan on financing.
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