Can I buy a car on finance for someone else?

Written by:
Verity Hogan
Content Manager

Can I buy a car on finance for someone else?

No, it’s not usually possible to buy a car on finance for someone else. In fact, most lenders require that the person who signs the car finance agreement is also the vehicle’s registered keeper and primary driver.

It’s all down to the way car finance works; every deal is tailored to you as an individual. The right loan for you will consider your affordability, payment history, and current employment, for example, so the lender can be as sure as possible that you’ll make your payments on time. None of these important criteria will apply if the loan is for someone else.

But that’s not all; a car on finance not owned by its registered keeper could lead to issues for the lender. If you were to fall behind with your repayments, they might not be able to track you down.

If you have taken out a car loan on someone else’s behalf and expect them to make the payments each month, there’s no guarantee they’ll keep up with their half of the bargain. Life happens; their budget might get stretched too thin, or your relationship with them could change, leaving you with a large debt you’re still responsible for paying.

It’s against the law to claim that you’re going to be the main driver if you’re not when applying for car finance. You should also let your lender know if you want to swap the car’s registered keeper during your loan term.

What is accommodation finance?

Accommodation finance is the act of financing a car in your name, even if it’s mainly going to be used by someone else. While it’s not illegal in the UK, it’s not accepted practice. It is considered too risky for most car finance lenders, especially if the person would be refused a car loan on their own.

This type of car finance is sometimes confused with fronting. Fronting is a type of fraud and is illegal. If you purposely mislead the lender and claim you’ll be the car’s main driver even if you won’t be, this is considered a criminal offence

Why can’t I finance a car for someone else?

Every car finance deal is tailored to the individual and the car they’re buying. This means the loan is based on your eligibility, and the lender can only be confident it’s right for your situation. They also carry out checks like a credit check and affordability check to ensure they’re lending responsibly.

If you’re financing a car for someone else, they could end up with a loan they can’t afford and isn’t right for their circumstances. It can also prevent the lender from recovering the car if payments aren’t made.

Can I buy a car on finance for my child or partner?

No, most car finance providers won’t let you buy a car on finance for your child or partner.

We know that it can be tempting; perhaps your child has just passed their driving test and is desperate to get out on the road, or your partner has a poor credit score but needs a car to get to work on time.

If this sounds familiar, consider joint or guarantor car finance. Guarantor car loans can be a good option for people with mixed credit histories as they require a third party, typically with a good credit score, to act as a guarantor. This means that if the borrower can’t afford to make a payment, their guarantor can step in and pay instead.

Can I buy a car on finance with someone else?

Yes, you may be able to get a joint car finance deal with someone else. With this type of loan, you’ll both be named on the agreement and be jointly responsible for making your monthly repayments.

In this case, you can both drive the car and share its running costs but keep in mind that only one of you can be the car’s registered keeper.

Joint car finance loans also sometimes come with additional eligibility requirements, such as needing both people to live at the same address.

Published: 20th of January 2024
Updated: 27th of February 2024