Getting loans may be easier than you think...

By Molly Reuter - bio | email
Posted by Ellen Krafve - email

TYLER, TX (KLTV) - Despite deep discounts and low financing, East Texas automakers say they are struggling to get shoppers into the showroom. What's the problem? Car dealerships say people are afraid they won't qualify for a loan, and realtors say they have the same problem.

Unlike other parts of the country, East Texas banks say they have money to loan. Zero percent financing and low prices, if you want a car, why not buy right now?

Monte Hall of Hall, Buick, Pontiac, GMC in Tyler says getting financing these days is not as hard as you think.

"I've had a lot of people who didn't think they would get approved and get financing, and they did," said Monte Hall.

Fortunately, Hall said the poor economy has not affected our local banks. Just ask them.

The bank is just as healthy as it has ever been," said Sam Dawson, with Southside Bank.

"Obviously, the economy nationwide is experiencing some very significant problems, but the community banks, which are typically owned locally, are doing well, and they've got money to lend," said Texas Bank and Trust's Shane Best.

If you have a good credit score and a steady income, local banks say you will most likely qualify for a car loan.

Let's say your wanting to buy a new house. East Texas banks say getting a loan for a home is a little different then a car because of what happened in other parts of the country. They say, some mortgage companies are requiring you to have a higher credit score now then before.

"What they are doing is what we are doing everyday in of the world, they are underwriting their loans," said Dawson. "They are making sure that people can pay for their mortgage loans."

Take a $150,000 home for example. Southside Bank says it requires the minimum credit score and a 20 percent down payment, which is around $30,000.

The higher your credit score is, the less down payment you will have to make, but the best way to find out if you qualify for a loan, local banks say, is simply to apply.

You don't even have to go to a bank to see if you qualify for a loan. Most local banks have applications online that list the requirements.