Golf Carts Financing Guide: (Got Bad Credit?)

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If you’re in the process of buying a golf cart, you’re probably aware that you have various options when it comes to purchasing.

While paying with cash is perhaps the easiest way to buy a golf cart, you can also access a broad range of financing options offered by dealers and manufacturers that spread the cost of your purchase over a longer period of time.

In this article, we introduce the different golf cart financing options and explain whether it’s possible to secure financing with bad credit.

Is it Hard to Finance a Golf Cart?

Financing a golf cart is usually a relatively straightforward process, with most dealers and retailers, as well as certain manufacturers, offering some type of financing option. Most golf cart financing deals allow you to make the repayments over a specified period of time (plus interest), which varies from company to company.

You need to be mindful of the fact that you will end up paying more money in the long run if you finance a golf cart. Still, it’s a viable option for many as you don’t need to part with a large sum of money from the outset.

Let’s look at golf cart financing in more detail…

Is There Golf Cart Financing with Bad Credit?

If you have a bad credit history, it will be more difficult for you to finance your golf cart purchase. If you are able to secure finance with a bad credit score, you will likely be subjected to higher interest rates, making the purchase even more expensive in the long run.

However, it’s worth noting that every financing company sets different parameters in regards to what they deem to be good and bad credit. For instance, Roadrunner Financial welcomes credit applications that range from sub-prime to prime, opening the window slightly to applicants without a great credit history.

Our advice is to approach different lenders and look at the terms and conditions of their financing arrangements. This is particularly important if you’re planning to buy a golf cart from a brick-and-mortar dealer, as the terms of financing vary greatly from place to place.

Another option for financing your golf cart is to apply for a bank loan, but again, you may struggle to get the money you need if you have a bad credit rating.

What About No Credit Check Golf Cart Financing?

You will find that the vast majority of retailers and manufacturers that offer golf cart financing arrangements will conduct a credit check before offering you the money to purchase your cart.

After all, buying a golf cart is a significant investment, and the lender is entitled to some assurance that you are capable of paying the loan back over the stipulated time period.

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You should be skeptical of financing arrangements that offer you cash up front without conducting a credit check. Arrangements such as this will almost certainly come with high-interest rates and will make your golf cart extremely expensive in the long run.

Before you take out any type of credit to pay for a golf cart, make sure you fully understand the terms and conditions.

The last thing you want to do is agree to finance on a golf cart that will cripple you financially. It would be better to save up over a certain period of time to buy a golf cart outright.

What Credit Score is Needed for a Golf Cart Loan?

To finance a golf cart purchase with Roadrunner*, a “sub-prime” credit score will suffice. These credit scores are between 580 and 620. As credit scores mean different things to different companies, it’s difficult to stipulate what score you exactly need to apply for finance for a golf cart.

If you want to apply for finance with EZ-GO directly, they stipulate that you need a minimum credit score of 550 FICO. These are just two examples, and you can see that their credit score requirements differ.

When you think about the broad range of golf cart finance options available, you start to realize that credit scores are a bit of a minefield, as every retailer or manufacturer is looking for something slightly different.

But based on what we know, you will typically need at least a sub-prime credit score to stand a good chance of securing credit to purchase a golf cart. Anything lower than this, and you will probably struggle or be offered exceptionally high-interest rates.

* Source for Roadrunner credit score.

How Many Months or Years Can You Finance a Golf Cart?

Every dealer or retailer offers slightly different financing options, but it’s normal to see arrangements from 12 to 60 months. For instance, EZ-GO’s credit is done through Sheffield Financing, at a rate of 1.99% interest for 48 months and 3.99% interest for 60 months.

What is usually true is that the quicker you can pay off your cart, the less interest you will be required to pay. You also need to think about the downpayment that’s required for you to buy the cart in the first place, with many dealers requiring 10-20% down.

When you’re doing your research into golf cart financing, remember that these arrangements actually benefit the dealers. They nearly always earn commission on selling financing packages, and the financing companies themselves profit from the interest payments that you make.

Therefore, if you’re in a position to pay for a golf cart in cash, this will nearly always be the best option, at least from a cost perspective. If you do opt for a financing deal, try and limit it to a shorter timeframe, as you will pay less interest than if you spread the cost out over several years.

What Kind of Loan Do You Get for A Golf Cart?

There are various types of loans that you can get to pay for a golf cart. If you apply for a financing deal through a dealer or manufacturer, the most common type of loan is a buy now, pay later arrangement that sees you make monthly installments and interest payments.

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Alternatively, you may qualify for a personal loan from your bank or a third-party lender. In this instance, you will be given the money directly, and you can then use it to pay the dealer for your golf cart.

Your repayments would then be due to the loan provider, as opposed to a finance company working with the dealer or manufacturer. Depending on the cost of your cart and your available credit, you might even be able to cover the cost of your purchase with a credit card.

However, you need to be really careful doing so, as credit card interest is typically much higher than rates offered via a personal loan. Ultimately, there are several ways that you can finance the purchase of a golf cart, so it’s important to do your research before diving into any type of credit arrangement.

What Is the Average Monthly Payment on A Golf Cart?

You can expect to pay anywhere between $100 and $500 per month for your golf cart; it really just depends on the type of finance deal that you take out which includes the loan duration (usually calculated in months) and the annual percentage rate of interest applied to your loan (APR).

Here’s an example to illustrate how it might work:

Let’s say you buy a brand new golf cart from EZ-Go for $15,000. You put 10% down ($1,500) and are charged an interest rate of 4% over a period of 60 months. You would end up repaying $248.62 each month, to the total of $14,917.38.

In other words, with compound interest considered, you would pay nearly 10% more for the cart by financing it over a period of 60 months.

This monthly repayment amount will change depending on the interest rate that you’re charged, as well as your credit score and the repayment period.

Therefore, it’s difficult to generalize, but the above calculation shows you what you can reasonably expect to pay back each month on a golf cart financing agreement.

Conclusion

Financing a golf cart is a great option if you’re looking to spread the cost of the cart over a longer period of time. After all, we don’t all have a spare $15,000 sitting in our savings account to cover the initial purchase price.

In most instances, you will need at least a sub-prime credit score to be approved for financing, and you will find that interest rates and payment terms differ greatly from lender to lender.

The bottom line is that you need to do your research into the market before committing to a financing arrangement, so you’re not caught out and left with a finance arrangement that costs you a fortune in the long run.