Auto delinquencies fall for eighth-consecutive quarter

A new survey details the percentage of consumers who were delinquent in paying their car bills last quarter.

According to TransUnion, for the eighth-straight quarter, auto delinquencies in the U.S. fell, dropping from 0.58 percent in 2010 to 0.45 percent this year.

"The good news is that national auto delinquency rates are still at historic lows and should remain so this year as the demand forecast for new and used vehicles indicates continued growth," said Peter Turek, automotive vice president of TransUnion's financial services unit. "Lenders, consumers, and dealers are expected to benefit during this period of gradual recovery and expansion."

In addition to detailing the delinquency rate at the national level, the report also revealed delinquencies among the states. Fifteen experienced declines, most significantly seen in North Dakota, Minnesota, Montana and Alaska.

Delinquencies may have fallen in these states as a result of consumers being able to afford low-interest financing plans offered by dealerships. In order to be approved for these, however, consumers need to have clean credit. Borrowers should review their financial histories or apply for a free credit report prior to seeking out a loan to ensure they qualify for the best rates.