how many payments before repo


What is the average number of missed payments before a vehicle is repossessed?

How Many Payments Before Repo?

If you are struggling with car payments or have fallen behind on your auto loan, it’s important to know how many payments you can miss before your car gets repossessed. While the exact number of missed payments can vary depending on your lender’s policies and state laws, there are a few general rules to keep in mind.

Factors Affecting Repossession

Before we dive into the number of missed payments, it’s important to understand what factors can affect whether or not your car will be repossessed. These can include:

  • The terms of your loan agreement
  • Your payment history and credit score
  • The value of your car
  • The laws in your state regarding repossession

It’s also important to note that repossession is typically a last resort for lenders. They would prefer that you make your payments on time and in full, as this is how they make money. However, if you fail to do so, they may have no choice but to repossess your vehicle.

Number of Missed Payments

While it’s difficult to provide an exact number of payments you can miss before repo, most lenders will begin the repossession process after one missed payment. This is because your loan agreement likely includes language that allows the lender to repossess your car if you breach the contract in any way, including by missing payments.

That being said, some lenders may be more lenient and allow for a certain number of missed payments before attempting repossession. This may vary based on the individual lender’s policies and the value of your car. Additionally, some states have laws that require lenders to give you a certain amount of notice before repossessing your vehicle, even if you have missed payments.

What to Do If You’re Struggling with Payments

If you’re struggling to make your car payments, there are a few steps you can take to avoid repossession:

  • Contact your lender and explain your situation. They may be able to offer you a deferment or forbearance, which temporarily pauses your payments or reduces them to a more affordable amount.
  • Consider refinancing your auto loan to make your payments more manageable.
  • Look into selling your car and paying off your loan if you can no longer afford it.

Whatever you do, don’t ignore your lender or your late payments. This will only make the situation worse and increase the chances of repossession. Remember, your lender wants to help you avoid repossession, but they can’t do so if you don’t communicate with them.


In conclusion, there is no set number of payments you can miss before repossession. However, most lenders will begin the process after one missed payment, and it’s important to take action as soon as you start struggling with payments to avoid this outcome. Contact your lender, explore your options, and don’t ignore the problem.

The threat of repossession of your vehicle is a serious one. Knowing how many payments you need to make before you can be repossessed is an important step in avoiding such a situation.

Missing payments on a vehicle loan can cause financial hardship for many people, but the fact that repossession is still possible means it’s important to stay up to date on your payments. Here’s what you need to know about how many payments you must make before you can be repossessed.

In the United States, the laws governing repossessions vary by state. Generally, a lender must be at least a few months behind on their payments before they can be repossessed. However, some states have laws that allow lenders to repossess a vehicle after just one missed payment, so it’s important to know the laws in your particular state.

Besides being behind in payments, a lender may also have other grounds to repossess a vehicle. These can include fraudulent documents, forged or altered documents, or not meeting the terms and conditions of a loan agreement.

Once the lender has given the borrower notice of the potential repossession, the borrower has a certain amount of time to make the outstanding payments and get current on the loan. In some states, the law requires a minimum amount of notice be given to the borrower; in others, there is no time frame. The lender may also require additional payments to cover their costs of repossessing and possibly reselling the vehicle.

If you’re concerned about repossession, the best thing to do is stay current on your payments and speak with your lender if you’re having difficulty doing so. They may be able to help you find a solution that works for both of you.

In conclusion, how many payments you must make before you can be repossessed depends on the laws of your state, if your lender finds they have grounds to do so, and how quickly you can make the necessary payments once notification has been given. By understanding the requirements, you can protect yourself from the financial hardship caused by repossession.

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