Car Loans For Doctors

Discover your car finance options as a doctor or other medical professional and apply through Savvy today.

Written by 
Bill Tsouvalas
Bill Tsouvalas is the managing director and a key company spokesperson at Savvy. As a personal finance expert, he often shares his insights on a range of topics, being featured on leading news outlets including News Corp publications such as the Daily Telegraph and Herald Sun, Fairfax Media publications such as the Australian Financial Review, the Seven Network and more. Bill has over 15 years of experience working in the finance industry and founded Savvy in 2010 with a vision to provide affordable and accessible finance options to all Australians. He has built Savvy from a small asset finance brokerage into a financial comparison website which now attracts close to 2 million Aussies per year and was included in the BRW’s Fast 100 in 2015 as one of the fastest-growing companies in the country. He’s passionate about helping Australians make financially savvy decisions and reviews content across the brand to ensure its accuracy. You can follow Bill on LinkedIn.
Our authors
, updated on May 8th, 2024       

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Doctor driving car

Cars are often vital for doctors due to the demanding nature of their careers. From managing tight schedules to reaching patients, a reliable car can help medical professionals provide prompt service and quality care and achieve a healthy work-life balance.

If you are a doctor looking for a car loan, turn to Savvy. We are partnered with more than 40 lenders across Australia, allowing us to search and find a car finance solution tailored to your needs. Get started with a quote today.

What are my car loan options as a doctor?

As a doctor, you have several car finance options available to you. These include:

Personal car loan

personal car loan allows you to borrow money from a lender to purchase a new or used vehicle for personal use. Car loans offer flexibility and convenience, making them a popular choice for many doctors looking to finance their vehicle purchases. You can typically choose the loan term, repayment frequency and loan amount that best fits your budget and requirements, and shopping around can help you find even better terms. Furthermore, unlike certain commercial products, there’s no limit on how you use your car.

Chattel mortgage

Self-employed doctors can consider using a chattel mortgage to buy a car. This commercial vehicle finance option works in much the same way as a car loan – though you must use the car for business 50% of the time or more. Chattel mortgages can offer tax and GST benefits. You can claim for depreciation on your new car and all of the interest on repayments for the business portion of use, as well as also claim back all the GST on the purchase price the next time you file a business activity statement for your practice.

Novated lease

Novated car leases work in a slightly different way to chattel mortgages and vehicle loans. This is a three-way agreement between your employer, a lender and you as an employee to purchase a car through a lease agreement. You pay for the leasing costs of the car through your pre-tax salary, and then at the end of the term have the option to pay off the outstanding amount and own the car outright.

The type of finance you choose will depend on your circumstances, but in many situations you may find a traditional car loan to be the most convenient option.

How do car loans for doctors work?

Most car loans follow a pretty standard structure, meaning you won’t receive a different product for medical professionals such as doctor or a nurse compared to other buyers. These are the typical features of a car loan:

  • Secured loan: car loans are typically secured loans, meaning the car you purchase acts as collateral. If you fail to make payments, the lender can repossess the vehicle to recoup their losses. This allows lenders to offer lower interest rates compared to unsecured loans.
  • Interest rate: most car loans come with a fixed interest rate. This is the core cost of borrowing money for your car loan. Expressed as a percentage, it represents the annual fee the lender charges for using their money.
  • Loan term: car loan terms typically range from 1 to 7 years. A longer term translates to lower monthly payments but ultimately results in paying more interest over the total loan life. Choose a term that aligns with your budget and ensures you're comfortable with the total repayment amount.
  • Monthly payments: your car loan payment will consist of two parts: principal (the amount you borrowed) and interest (the cost of borrowing). You'll make fixed monthly payments throughout the loan term until the balance is paid in full.
  • Additional fees: in addition to the interest rate, car loans may have additional fees such as an origination fee (a one-time fee for processing the loan) and documentation fees. Be sure to factor these fees into your overall loan cost comparison.

What are the benefits of getting a car loan as a doctor?

Doctors often enjoy several benefits when obtaining a car loan due to their stable income and professional status. Some of the potential advantages include:

  • Favourable interest rates: lenders typically offer lower interest rates to doctors compared to other borrowers due to their high earning potential and stable employment.
  • Flexible repayment terms: car loans for doctors often come with flexible repayment options, allowing borrowers to tailor their loan term and repayment schedule to suit their financial situation.
  • Tax advantages: depending on the type of car finance chosen and how regularly the car is used for work purposes, doctors may be eligible to claim tax deductions for interest payments, depreciation and other expenses related to vehicle ownership.
  • Quick approval process: with their strong financial profile, doctors may qualify for fast approval and streamlined application processes, making it easier to purchase a vehicle when needed.
  • Opportunity for additional benefits: some car loan providers offer benefits and perks, such as discounted interest rates, fee waivers or complimentary insurance packages.

Car loan document requirements for doctors

Why do so many Australians choose Savvy?

Answers to your frequently asked car loan questions

Can I get a car loan if I’m working as a doctor on a temporary visa?

Yes – doctors can find a car loan when they’re on a non-resident visa. You may be asked to provide a deposit, and the loan term must finish at least a few months before your visa expires. You’ll need to be in solid employment and have an excellent financial record during your time in Australia. Lenders reserve the right to offer a shorter car loan for temporary visa holders.

What’s a residual amount?

Residual amounts are also called balloon payments. It’s when you choose to repay a percentage of your car loan or chattel mortgage at the end of your loan term instead of with regular repayments throughout the term. When the loan period ends, the residual becomes due. At that point, you can choose to trade up your car for a new model and use the remaining value of the vehicle to pay the residual, pay in cash or refinance the balloon payment and effectively extend the term. The primary advantage of an optional residual is your regular repayments will be lower.

Who owns the car during the loan term?

Whether you use a car loan or a chattel mortgage, you own the car during the term. With a novated car lease, the lender assumes all the ownership risks. You do have the chance to buy the car at the end of the term, but you don’t own the vehicle during the finance term.

Can doctors get low doc car loans?

Absolutely. Also known as self-declaration loans, these products are intended for situations where your practice financials may not meet traditional requirements. They use the chattel mortgage structure, with identical tax and GST benefits to a standard-document application. Lenders prefer asset-backed low doc car finance borrowers and will likely insist on a 20% deposit if that’s not the case.

Can I apply for a car loan outside working hours?

You can. If you’re doing unsociable shifts, you can sit down and upload documents plus fill in forms any time of the day or night, seven days a week. If you’re really busy and can only snatch a few minutes here and there, you can save and return to online applications, too. Lender assess applications during business hours and the majority get processed in one or two working days.

Can I use a trade-in vehicle with a car loan for doctors?

Yes. Whether you’re upgrading a business vehicle or using a secured car loan, you can still use a trade-in at the dealership.

Can I get a car loan as a medical student?

As a medical student you will likely undertake a range of placements in a number of different settings – making a set of wheels a necessity in many cases. It is possible to get a car loan as a medical student, but eligibility and terms may vary depending on factors such as your income and credit history. Using a guarantor and putting down a deposit are two ways to boost your chances of car loan approval as a student.

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