Westlake Financial Review

Westlake Financial is a different spin on auto loans and financing. Typically, one shops for a vehicle and then seeks financing for their purchase. Westlake turns the tables on this traditional idea. Westlake Financial actually can set you up with a vehicle using its own search tool. You then use the online loan process to pre-approve financing on that vehicle you find at a local Westlake automotive retail affiliate.

About Westlake Financial

Westlake Financial, also doing business as Loan Center, is a lender that works with your retail outlet to provide you with financing. Working with 30,000 partners, Westlake helps you to find a vehicle and then pre-qualifies you before you head over to the local dealership to move your purchase and your loan forward.

The Better Business Bureau gives Westlake Financial an A rating, but not an accreditation. Westlake has been in business for 33 years. Over the past 12-month period, BBB has received about 300 complaints about Westlake Financial, and over the past three years roughly 800 complaints. We scanned the complaints and found that many seemed unreasonable. For example, one reads, “Making payments monthly for 3 years and only $1,500 has gone to the principle balance!” This is an argument with mathematics, not Westlake Financial in particular. Many other complaints had to do with customer service disappointments related to loan payoffs and title transfers.

Compare Loan Rates and Save

Don't settle for dealer financing, get loan quotes from multiple providers

Powered By:

Why Consider Westlake Financial for an Auto Loan

Those who have less than stellar credit will be pleased to know that Westlake Financial has no minimum credit score requirement. While that is always good news, your interest rate is going to vary based on your credit history. Information we found online indicates that those with excellent credit can likely get an APR under 2%. Those with poor credit may only be offered an APR of around 9%.

Read more on Average Auto Loan Rates here.

How To Apply for a Westlake Financial Auto Loan

Applying for a Westlake Financial loan starts at home. You fill in the blanks on a form and you are then prequalified. With this prequalification in hand, you can head to a local Westlake Financial affiliate retailer knowing what you should expect to get for a loan. The actual loan is written at the dealership.

Westlake Financial Auto Loan Details

We searched online for Westlake Financial auto loan details and found that the rates, maximum borrowing amounts and the length of the loans vary by credit score. Quite a bit. Loan terms are up to 72 months. The total amount offered may be limited due to your credit score. Rates change with time, and your rate will be impacted by many factors. So, be certain that you check carefully what your terms are, and be sure to shop your loan with your local credit union or your bank.

Westlake Financial has a handy inventory search tool. The company also allows you to do some armchair loan pre-approval work. Other than these advantages, Westlake Financial is going to be working through your retailer. That retailer is the only place to find out exactly what you will be offered. From our research, Westlake Financial seems to be a retail-support lender who also offers a consumer-facing web page to help build its brand. You won’t actually obtain your loan directly by working with Westlake Financial from home.

Pros and Cons

  • Handy inventory locator tool
  • Prequalification web portal
  • No minimum credit score required to apply
  • Rates will rise quickly for those with less than perfect credit
  • This is a company offering loans only through your local retailer, not directly to you like a credit union

Read more on our top recommendations for the Best Auto Loans here.

Compare Loan Rates and Save

Don't settle for dealer financing, get loan quotes from multiple providers

Powered By:


What credit score does Westlake Financial use?

Westlake Financial does not make loans based on only a credit score or one credit score in particular.

Is it easy to get an auto loan approved by Westlake Financial?

Yes, Westlake Financial has a reputation for being easy to work with. In addition to offering a pre-approval portal website, Westlake Financial also is not going to look at just one factor to decide whether to lend to you.

Does Westlake Financial require proof of income?

All lenders require that you disclose how you will pay for your auto loan. Those with hard to prove income sources (self-employed) will find Westlake Financial’s local retail outlet helpful in moving your application forward.

Does Westlake Financial require a down payment?

Nearly every lender is going to require that you have some skin in the game. Our research revealed that Westlake Financial usually requires at least 10% down.

If I use the Westlake Financial pre-qualification tool online will that impact my credit score?

It should not. Here’s what Westlake says about that; “Westlake allows you to browse vehicles you are approved on and personalize your financing terms and payment options without impacting your credit score.”

Editor's note and disclaimer: Car Talk is supported by our fans, readers and listeners. When you click on some of the links on our website, we may receive referral compensation. However, you should know that the recommendations we make are based on our independent editorial review and analyses.