What Happens When Your Car Is Repossessed – My car was repossessed. What to do; If your vehicle has been repossessed, take a look at your current balance sheet – your lender may also have a way to help. Learn more about what happens when a car is repossessed.
Returning the car can put you in a difficult situation – the main mode of transportation is no longer there. Recovery can be daunting, but we’re here to help you find your next step. If you are planning to return your car, there are some things to keep in mind. See the most frequently asked questions about what happens when your car is repossessed.
What Happens When Your Car Is Repossessed
The answer really depends on your particular situation. State laws and regulations govern most of your rights after your vehicle is repossessed. In some cases, the lender may have a policy that gives you additional options after returning your vehicle.
How Voluntary Repossession Impacts Your Credit
Get your car back if you complete certain steps in time. These steps may include:
It’s important to remember that the property left in the car is still yours, not the lender’s. Any personal items that appear in the vehicle during restoration must be stored at the repo agency for a period of time in accordance with state laws and regulations. You will need to contact the repo agent directly to arrange a time to pick up your item. The lender will notify you with the repo agent’s contact information. You will also be able to contact your lender to find out more details about the agency, including their opening hours, to contact them.
If your lender is Capital One and you want to know which repo company to contact about your personal affairs, please contact our Help Center or see the ticket you should get from us.
In some cases, you may still owe the balance even if your car has been repossessed and sold at auction. If the resale of the vehicle does not cover the amount owed to the borrower, you may have to pay the balance after the sale. The lender will usually add the cost of the impoundment and any necessary vehicle repairs to the remaining debt. Some states prohibit lenders from collecting deficiency balances in certain circumstances.
How Do You Get A Car Back After Repossession?
Lastly, if you borrow money from a repossessed vehicle and make more from the sale than you owe, they will have to send you additional money.
Knowing what to do if your car is repossessed can help turn the situation around to improve your financial situation. Regardless of the outcome of your situation, it’s a good idea to monitor your credit score after going through the foreclosure process. Continue to make timely payments on all your bills to positively impact your credit score. Although repossessing affects your credit, making payments on time can play an important role in boosting your credit score.
This site is for educational purposes only. Registered third parties are not affiliated with Capital One and are solely responsible for their product and service reviews. Capital One does not endorse or guarantee any third party products, services, information or advice. The information presented in this article is believed to be correct at the time of publication, but is subject to change. Images shown are for illustrative purposes only and may not be accurate representations of the product. The materials provided on this site are not intended to provide legal, investment or financial advice or to indicate the feasibility or suitability of any Capital One product or service for your particular circumstances. For specific advice regarding your particular circumstances, you may wish to consult a qualified professional.
The bank should leave you with the same great feeling you get when driving on the weekends. And that’s how I feel when I write helpful tips and reviews – car-obsessed and finance-obsessed and everything in between while shopping for a new ride. A voluntary foreclosure, also called a voluntary surrender, is one of two types of foreclosure that can happen if you can’t make your automatic payment. Another is the inadvertent possession of your lender to forcibly repossess your car.
Can You Avoid Repossession By Paying Off Your Car Loan?
You voluntarily start the occupation by contacting your lender and returning your vehicle. You borrow it and put the money in the balance. It is important to understand that you may still owe money.
If you find it difficult to make automatic payments, you may consider voluntary renewal. However, be sure to understand the impact and weigh your options. Voluntary repayment can damage your credit and you may still owe your unpaid balance to your lender or collection agency.
To start a voluntary repossess, contact your lender and tell them you want to surrender your vehicle. Choose a time and place for delivery of the car and keys. (This saves the borrower from having to call a tow truck to pick up the car.) Be sure to document where you meet with their contact information and date and time.
The creditor will resell your vehicle at auction, with the auction process going toward what you owe. You will then owe your balance minus what the car sold for. This is known as deficit balance or deficit. 
What To Know About Hiding A Car To Avoid Repossession
If you don’t pay the deficiency balance, the lender can take you to court to seek a deficiency judgment. State laws vary: this can only happen in states where a deficiency judgment is recognized for a car loan and the car is offered for sale at a reasonable price. A deficiency judgment is most common for cases involving mortgage foreclosures. 
While it’s impossible to know exactly how much a repossession will affect your credit, you’ll likely see a sharp drop. That’s because your payment history is the single biggest factor in determining your 35% FICO® score. Refunds, such as defaults, fall into this category.
Late payments or late payments can cause your credit score to drop when you fall behind on a car loan. If you’ve already missed a car payment, your credit score will likely be affected. However, the consequences can be worsened by the repayment because you missed the loan.
Debt settlement can also have a negative effect on your credit score. When a lender sells your debt to a debt collector, it’s known as a “pull-out” and the collection account is listed separately on your credit report.
Know Your Rights: Repossession And Writ Of Seizure And Sale
Voluntary repayments are defaults on loans that can damage your credit score and hold your credit history for up to seven years. This seven-year period begins on the day of the first payment default that gives rise to the default.
Even if your debt is sold to a collection agency, it is considered a continuation of your account with the original borrower. If you owe your account balance and the court finds against you, not only will you have to pay, but your credit history could suffer. Of course, any judgment against you in a lawsuit filed by a debt collector can also be on your credit report for seven years starting from the date of the judgment. 
Because owning a vehicle affects your credit score, you may be less likely to get a new vehicle loan—or any other type of loan. If you can get a loan, the lender or agent will likely charge you a higher interest rate because they may see you as at risk of defaulting on the loan.
Voluntary surrender can help you in certain ways, but it will not save you from some of the consequences of repossessing your vehicle.
How Does A Repossession Affect Your Credit?
Rehab is usually a last resort. It costs you money on your loan and, of course, the use of vehicles you may need to get to and from work. Looking at the consequences of any recovery – voluntary or forced – it’s worth exploring alternatives.
The first step is to contact your lender, car dealership or financial institution to help manage your loan. Your lender may be willing to negotiate a new payment plan. Increasing the terms of your loan may result in lower monthly payments, but may increase the amount of interest you pay.
Explaining your situation and confirming your willingness to work to repay the loan can convince the borrower to help you create a plan that will benefit both of you.
You may want to see if you qualify for a lower interest rate or longer repayment term. On the other hand, you can learn about debt consolidation by taking out a new loan that you use to repay your car loan along with other debts you owe.
Repossessed Cars: How Do They Work And What Laws Should You Know?
Debt consolidation can help ease your debt by integrating it into one monthly payment. It can make your debt manageable and help you improve your payment history, but depending on your individual credit history, it can also negatively affect your credit score by downsizing.
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