What You Need to Know Before Applying for a Loan

Rapid Finance on 16 December 2014

Completing the initial application is easy. If you want to apply for a car loan, all you’ll be asked for at the first stage of the process is your driver’s licence – no matter what your finances have been like in the past. Approval, on the other hand, demands a bit more of you. Preparedness is key to success, so we’ve set out some common loan requirements that could help to prepare you for what a lender may ask.

Standard requirements

When you first apply for a car loan, all that you need to have in hand is your driver’s licence and expiry date.

Once the initial application has been completed, the documents required to progress will vary based upon your past and present circumstances. As a minimum, even if your credit history is perfect, most lenders will require at least two recent payslips as Proof of Income.

If you can meet the standard loan car loan requirements and have a good credit history, you could enjoy low rates offered by secured car loans.

Self-Employed and Low Doc Applicants

If you run your own business or are self-employed, a lender may need further Proof of Income to establish your ability to pay back the loan. In some cases, if you are self-employed and applying for a car loan, the lender may ask to see financial documents such as Tax Returns or Notices of Assessment. If you do not have these documents, there are alternate options that a lender may accept. For instance, it may be enough to provide Bank Transaction Listings.

Low Doc and No Doc Applicants

Another option for car loan applicants who do not have financials are Low Doc or No Doc facilities. These are designed to assist people who are struggling to provide evidence of their income.

On the other hand, if you already have a car loan with a perfect history of repayment, it may be possible to obtain a replacement loan without income documentation.

Centrelink and Bad Credit History

If you are receiving Centrelink benefits when applying for a car loan, lenders will require a Centrelink Income Statement. Since your credit rating will be checked when applying, it is also good to clean up any existing debts before you lodge your initial application. This could drastically improve your chances of approval.

If you have a bad credit history, lenders may also want to see credit card statements, mortgage details and verification of other loans you hold. In some situations, lenders may request a three-month history of bank account transaction listings or bank statements.

Read more information on getting a car loan with bad credit history.


When you first apply for a car loan, the only document you need is your driver’s licence. Depending on your past and present financial circumstances, lenders will require different forms of documentation once the application proceeds. If you have a bad credit history, more documentation will be required than if your credit history is perfect.

If you're confident that you meet these car loan requirements, you're ready to start your car loan application.